In his delicately insightful style, McCall Smith bring to life the dark and troubled time of World War II, setting this war-time romance in a small country village where everyone knows everyone else business.
Val Elliot is a land girl learning to work on the land under the grateful and gentle tuition of farmer Archie, whose nephew Phil has gone off to fight Hitler. She is considered as a bright intelligent girl, who if it was not for the War would have gone far with her education. She has been bought up with her Aunt, the local postmistress, and nephew Willie, who although considered ‘simple’, always seemed to understand far more about the land and life ever than given credit.
It is his placement on Ted Butters farm, a man who is hard and cruel, that proves to be the catalyst, for a working dog, aptly named Peter Woodhouse’s journey through life, to end up as the mascot for the American Reconnaissance Squadron based nearby, Val falling deeply in love and a friendship that was span the horror of the final days of Hitler’s reign in Europe, which would last right down the years to modern times.
The storyline is simple but so beautifully embellished that every page brings to life the hardship, love, fear, terror and happiness of a time in history which bought out the best and worst in humanity, allowing the passage of time to wind through the imagination, to gently captivating the reader.
The detail as always with the written word crafted by McCall Smith is as if a painter had taken a brush and captured in cameo, a time and place, painting it with the richness that is life in all its many guises.
Lovers of Alexander McCall Smiths’ cosy, intimate style will absolutely adore his latest offering.
|Author||Alexander McCall Smith|
|Distributor||New South Books|