Rosie Goodison is not one to shy away from life’s problems. Whether it’s finding work or challenging injustice, she squares her shoulders, sets her chin high and faces it full on. Born at the end of the nineteenth century, in the rural south of England and sent into service aged just twelve, Rosie quickly discovers that many people spend their lives toiling for very little reward, whilst others ‘have it all’.
Whilst working as a housekeeper Rosie starts to learn more and more about the world, gleaned from overheard conversations and discarded newspapers. This prompts a thirst for knowledge that will prevail for the rest of her life.
Rosie aspires to have a better life than that of her parents: better living and working conditions, better education for her children, to be able to vote, to be able to control how many children she has…
Without realising it, this young woman is blazing a trail for all of those who are to come after.
Whilst working in London, Rosie meets her sweetheart Jim, but The Great War puts paid to their plans, and she, along with the rest of society, must try to deal with the horrors and losses.
All that remains of Rosie now is a quartet of paintings in an art gallery. The artist is now famous, but the model is unnamed and forgotten; nobody of consequence.
But everybody has a life story.
I do like a good historical read especially when it is something I am interested in. This is Southern England up until 1939 and we see how Rosie Goodison copes with life as a twelve year old girl. It is a tale about a young girl who makes the best of what life throws at her. I found her a strong and determined young girl. The descriptions are very well detailed and very informative. I felt I learnt a great deal about that era from this book. I liked the dialogue too it made it more realistic. I hope there is a book two as it seemed like the ending wasn’t really finished with yet.
I received an advanced reading copy of this book for a honest review.
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