A blog dedicated for readers of family sagas set mainly in the UK and Australia.
Blog posts will be from a group of saga authors such as AnneMarie Brear, Janet Woods, Gwen Kirkwood, Carol Rivers, Freda Lightfoot, Elaine Everest, Mary Wood, Jean Fullerton, Sheila Riley / Annie Groves, Kate Thompson and Fiona Ford.
Wednesday, 4 May 2016
Comfort for the Troops by Fiona Joesph
Recently I read Comforts for the Troops by Fiona Joseph and wrote a review for it.
A novel inspired by the female workers at Cadbury Chocolate
Factory during WWI, the novel centres on three female characters and their stories through
this difficult time.
Leonora is the character that has drive and determination to
be a forewoman of her section at the factory. However, her manner is cold and
her spine unbending when it comes to matters outside of the factory. Although a
hard worker, she finds herself overlooked for promotion and this makes her
Jessie is a married worker at the factory, whose husband is
housebound after an accident at his work. Jessie is the breadwinner, but
finding life outside of the home opens Jessie’s eyes to another world where she
can be free to find new interests. Sadly her new found freedom creates problems
in her marriage, which is suffering under the pressure of her long hours at the
factory and her husband’s long convalescence and his struggle to regain his
focus and independence.
Finally we have Mary, the boisterous and fun-loving woman
who has a sense of family duty and a bucketful of courage. Her adventurous
nature gives her an instant friendship with Jessie but earns the disapproval of
It takes the climatic events in each of these three women’s
lives to make them realise that what they were striving for, isn’t always
Leonora has to learn humbleness to truly understand her role
at the factory and in her life.
Jessie must learn compromise and forgiveness to find the
happiness she seeks.
While Mary learns that her eagerness to make things right
isn’t always the correct way to do things and sometimes you have to let others
Comforts for the Troops is a gentle and interesting read. I
enjoyed the three women’s situations. Although I felt at times that each story
could have had a little more depth. I would have preferred more back story to
each woman. Apart from Mary, we know nothing of Leonora or Jessie’s background
really, just the odd comment, but nothing substantial.
In general though the
plots worked and the story flowed. The story set in the Cadbury’s chocolate
factory was unique, as everyone has heard of Cadbury’s chocolates. I can tell
the author did her research and put much effort into getting the historical