WW1 marches on, but Violet faces her own battle at home
July 1916. Young mother, Violet Jones, lives a tough life in the Rhymney Valley, caring for 4-year-old Clarice and baby Benjy on her own while soldier husband Charlie fights on the Front Line. But when tragedy strikes, Violet’s life becomes even harder.
While they may be far from the battlefields, the effects of WW1 take their toll on the small mining community of Dorcalon, with food becoming scarce and more and more of their young men losing their lives.
With very little money coming in, and two babies to care for, Violet takes in a relative to help make ends meet. But far from easing her burden, it might turn out to be the worst decision she’s made.
As the Great War takes its toll on the nation, Violet faces her own battle. All alone in the world, can she protect her children, and herself? And will she ever find joy out of the depths of despair?
A captivating, emotional saga set in WW1 – will tug on your heart-strings and bring a tear to your eye. If you like Nadine Dorries, Rosie Goodwin or Sheila Newbury you will adore this beautiful Welsh saga.
Francesca Capaldi takes us back in time to life in Rhymney Valley in Wales. Dorcalon is a small village where life centres around the mine although the mine is more in the back ground with the author focusing on the residents themselves.
You get a real sense of how hard life was for many during WW1. Many of the men had gone off to fight leaving the women to do more at the mine as well as trying to make ends meet and look after the family home and inhabitants. Violet is one such character that we meet and I felt for this young mother who has so many issues to face. One being her over bearing mother in law who made my blood boil so many times when reading about her.
There is a fair bit of drama that unfolds within the village and it was like watching your favourite soap at times to see if certain characters were going to get away with their actions or if they would be found out. I loved the sense of community and the friendships, although at times some of these were put under strain.
War in the Valleys is another great story by the author that captivated my mind and heart. There is some great characterisation that had me go through so many emotions as these characters lives got under my skin. It’s a great insight into how people lived in those days and didn’t envy the women keeping house without all the mod cons we have nowadays. A must read for historical fiction fans who love to be transported to a time gone by where emotions are high and friendship and hope is strong.
My thanks to Hera Books and NetGalley for an advanced readers copy of this book. All opinions are my own and not biased in anyway.
Several years ago, Francesca Capaldi pursued a childhood dream and joined a creative writing class. Lots of published short stories, a serial, and four pocket novels later, she’s now explored her mother’s ancestral history for a series of novels set in a Welsh colliery village. A history graduate and former teacher, she hails from the Sussex coast but now lives in Kent with her family and a cat called Lando Calrissian.