Claire paints a picture of Britain, specifically the Somerset levels in 1946, that is so far from life today that it could be in another country. The book is all about the tensions between the Polish soldiers from the second Polish Corps who are refusing to go back to Poland as it is now occupied, and the returning British soldiers.
Add in shortages, lack of housing, lack of work, difficulties in language, romance, and one of the coldest winters on record and it all makes an explosive mix.
The main characters are Wladyslaw Malinowski who is taken on by Billy Greer to help with the Withy harvest on his uncles farm in the heart of the Somerset levels. Then there is Lyndon Hanley the so called hero of the Burma Campaign, though his current behaviour is far from heroic. Finally there is Stella a local school teacher who has to choose between Lyndon and Wladyslaw..
The book has humour, and sadness and the death of one of the key characters triggers a series of events that bring the story to a tragic ending.
It is a very atmospheric, dramatic story and certainly an eye opener if life was really like that in 1946.
A book that can be well recommended as book 26 week 18 fiction 25 (8 on audio) non fiction 1 (falling slightly behind my target of just under two a week)
Dyslexic doodles on photography, food (growing, cooking & of course eating), faith and other fascinating things. This is a personal blog expressing my views.