The Gypsy's Tale by Sally Wragg

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The Gypsy's Tale by Sally Wragg

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Category: Historical Fiction
Rating: 3.5/5
Reviewer: Sue Magee
Reviewed by Sue Magee
Summary: You could read this book as a standalone, but you'll get more from it if you read it as the final part of the Loxley Trilogy, which spans the first half of the twentieth century. An enjoyable read.
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: 1774KB Date: July 2015
Publisher: Sally Wragg

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There's a new resident at Loxley. Bronwyn's niece, Lottie Colfax is tired of school, desperate to join up and 'do her bit', to the frustration of her family who hope that some time away from home will encourage her to see sense. But from her family's point of view there's a bad example at Loxley: Hettie, Duchess of Loxley has joined the WAAFS and is serving in London - usually driving people from place to place. Her grandmother's not at all pleased about this: Katherine sees Hettie's duty as being at Loxley. Nothing comes before Loxley in Katherine's view - even King and country must take second place. Fortunately Katherine doesn't know that Hettie is going to be doing something far more dangerous. In the meantime Lottie has discovered a secret in Loxley's cellars and met a young man who is also determined to join up, no matter what his mother says.

I had eight hours of train journeys in two days and I needed something enjoyable to read which would capture my interest but not suffer from regular interruptions. The Gypsy's Story was the perfect answer. I'd already read the first and second parts of the Loxley trilogy so I was well versed in the family relationships and general background to the story. You could read The Gypsy's Story as a standalone, but it would take you a little longer to get to grips with who's who and why some relationships are as they are. Besides, why deprive yourself of a good story? We've seen the Loxley family weather the storms of the First World War and the interwar years: now they're facing the different, but no less arduous challenges of the Second World War and Sally Wragg captures the atmosphere of the time perfectly.

Wragg captures the ageing Katherine perfectly too: the old termagant is getting more and more frail, but her demanding nature hasn't mellowed at all. Bronwyn, on the other hand, has aged well. It's a long time now since the death of the Duke (to her, just simply 'Harry'): she's beginning to accept that she's lonely and that there's one particular person to whom she's very attracted. It's not going to be easy though: Katherine would certainly oppose the match for a lot of reasons and Bronwyn isn't entirely certain if her feelings are reciprocated although there's one piece of very solid evidence that they might be.

I was slightly disappointed at a couple of coincidences of previous characters turning up in rather unusual places - occupied France was quite a large place to have an accidental gathering of old acquaintances, but then I can be rather picky about such things! It was an enjoyable read and perfect for my needs on those two days. I'd like to thank the publisher for sending a copy to the Bookbag.

If this book appeals you will probably also enjoy The Woman in the Picture by Katharine McMahon, Keep the Home Fires Burning: War at Home, 1915 by Cynthia Harrod-Eagles and The Silent Hours by Cesca Major.

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Buy The Gypsy's Tale by Sally Wragg at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy The Gypsy's Tale by Sally Wragg at


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