The Women of Mulberry Lane by Rosie Clarke – extract

Rosie Clarke is the author of New Arrivals at Mulberry Lane,  The Girls of Mulberry Lane and A Wedding at Mulberry Lane. Her latest novel, The Women of Mulberry Lane was published by Aria Fiction on 1 August 2019.

Aria have kindly allowed me to share an extract from the novel with you.

Peggy met Maureen as she was leaving the corner shop a few days later and her friend had the new baby in the pram. Peggy cooed over the lovely little boy, saying that he was going to be just like his father.‘Have you been in to the clothes shop yet? Maureen asked and Peggy nodded.‘Yes, I bought something the other day.You’ve got some nice things in, Maureen.’‘Vera is trying to take only good things, because we don’t want rubbish. Some women are annoyed when we refuse their things, but Vera advises them to try the market.’‘How is it going? Are you selling much?’‘We’ve had a reasonable turnover. It just depends what people bring in. Some women have lovely things they just don’t want and they go as soonas they’re put out, but other things hang around for ages. If I bought them I might be out of pocket, but by taking commission and paying when they sell I can’t lose.’‘What a good idea,’ Peggy exclaimed and nodded.‘Oh, before I forget, I’d love you and Gordon to come to the Christmas Eve party –do you think he will feel up to it?’‘I’m not sure,’ Maureen said and Peggy thought she looked anxious. ‘Some days he seems to be a lot better –and others he slides right back. The infection from the wound has healed, but it is taking time to get his leg working properly. He refuses to use the wheelchair the hospital loaned us and that means he stands too much and his leg just gave way the other day and he went down on his backside at the foot of the stairs.A few bruises, but it made him angry…’‘Yes, I can see how it would,’ Peggy said and smiled. ‘Men and small boys are much the same. They think they can do more than they can and when they take a tumble it hurts their pride more than anything else.’‘Freddie been up to his usual mischief then?’‘He never stops,’ Peggy laughed, because she was proud of her adventurous son. ‘He tumbled all the way down the stairs yesterday and never shed a tear. Maggie was at the top of the stairs and so wasFay. I think one of them may have pushed him, but he just glared up at them and didn’t say a word.’‘Oh dear, I don’t envy you that problem,’ Maureen sympathised. ‘I’m lucky. Shirley dotes on both her brothers and Robin does whatever he can manage of what she does. He follows her everywhere when she’s home from school, but it makes things easier for me, because she’s such a help…’Peggy nodded. There had been a time when Shirley was a spoiled only child and she’d made life difficult for Maureen, but a spell away from home and some harsh treatment from her grandmother’s relations had made her realise how lucky she was. Maureen had taken care of her long before she’d fallen in love with Shirley’s father, Gordon, and married him, and the girl was devoted to her.The two friends parted on the best of terms as always. Peggy reflected that in all the time she’d known Maureen they’d never had a cross word and that was unusual. She and Janet had argued more than once, but Maureen had always been there for her, even though she’d had her share of problems.

About the book

Love and heartbreak, birth and death, joy amid hardship, are all here in the gripping fifth novel about the people of Mulberry Lane during World War Two. The war is nearly over –or is it? The women of Mulberry Laneanxiouslywait for news. Peggy doesn’t know if she’ll ever again see Able,the American father of her twins, while a very odd letter from estranged husband, Lauriethreatens to set the cat among the pigeons. Rose can’t stop loving Jimmy while Tom can’t stop loving her. Will Gordon never again be the man he once was? Can he be a proper husband to Maureen and if he can’t, what will become of their marriage? The men, women and children of Mulberry Lane fight on with indomitable spirit, as the endgame of the Second World War enters its most deadly phase.

About the Author

Rosie is happily married and lives in a quiet village in East Anglia. Writing books is a passion for Rosie, she also likes to read, watch good films and enjoys holidays in the sunshine. She loves shoes and adores animals, especially squirrels and dogs

*I was asked to host this extract to help promote The Women of Mulberry Lane. I did not receive a copy of the book or any payment for hosting this content*

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