Christmas at Woolworths by Elaine Everest
Even though there was a war on, the Woolworths girls brought Christmas cheer to their customers
Best friends Sarah, Maisie and Freda are brought together by their jobs at Woolworths. With their loved ones away on the front line, their bonds of friendship strengthen each day. Betty Billington is the manager at Woolworths, and a rock for the girls, having given up on love . . . Until a mysterious stranger turns up one day – could he reignite a spark in Betty?
As the year draws to a close, and Christmas approaches, the girls must rely on each other to navigate the dark days that lie ahead . . .
With so much change, can their friendship survive the war?
I picked up this book before Christmas last year from a book stall at a Christmas fair but I never got around to reading so it was added to my Christmas list for this year and finally I have managed to read it.
I will be honest I struggled at the beginning of this book and I wasn’t entirely sure I would continue reading it but thankfully I carried on as I could see it was going to be a good story. The reason I struggled was due to Everest’s writing style, when there are a lot of characters all talking Everest doesn’t make it very clear who is saying what and in several instances there aren’t even quotation marks to show there is a dialogue going on which really put me off. However, once I got used to it I soon got into the story.
My favourite character of the book is Ruby who is Sarah’s grandmother. Ruby looks after everyone and includes everyone as family even people she has just met. If she sees they need help she is there doing whatever needs to be done. She is also a big believer that any problem can be solved with tea and is regularly making a brew.
Freda is a wonderful character who I really felt for as she seems to get the worst luck in this book but bless her all she wants to do is do her part for the war effort and keep on going. Sarah who is married to a Spitfire pilot and has a baby daughter is also the same and happily goes the extra mile for anybody in need.
I will be honest I would have loved a bit more about Betty because she was a fantastic character that I really wanted to see more of. Betty is a leader and a strong woman who is a true friend to Sarah, Maisie and Freda.
This book is detailing the run up to Christmas through these friends’ lives and it is beautiful and really enjoyable. I absolutely loved the story and the excessive use of tea because as a massive tea drinker myself I believe that tea solves most problems. I give this book 4 out of 5 Dragons just because I struggled with Everest’s writing style but I do intend on reading the rest of the series.
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About the author
Elaine Everest was born and brought up in northwest Kent and has written widely – both short stories and features – for women’s magazines. When she isn’t writing, Everest runs The Write Place creative writing school in Dartford Kent, and the blog for Romantic Novelists’ Association.