This is the story of a Northern middle-class family in the years before and after the First World War. Louisa Ashton is the matriarch of the family, with daughters Letty and Laura, sons Jim and Charles. Her children are now grown up and beginning to make their way in the world. War intervenes, and everything changes. We will follow the Ashton family closely with all its ups and downs as the pressures mount, and with them will come moments of sublime happiness, but also pain and tragedy, and many hard decisions to be made.
BECAUSE OF THE LOCKWOODS
Thea Hunter was denied the easy life by the lack of financial security after the death of her father, and bitterly resented the patronage of the Lockwoods. Everything that went wrong in Thea's life could be traced to the Lockwoods, and she was determined that one day she would even the score.
THE CLOSED DOOR AND OTHER STORIES
Dorothy Whipple's key theme is 'Live and Let Live' and what she describes throughout her short stories are people, and particularly parents, who defy this maxim. For this reason her work is timeless, like all great writing.
EVERY GOOD DEED AND OTHER STORIES
In this collection, the novella 'Every Good Deed', originally published in 1944 ? and nine short stories, show Dorothy Whipple at her best. Each story, although different in many ways, features at least one woman who is challenged by the choices and behaviour of another.
Set around the Great War, Jane Carter, a seventeen-year-old orphan, finds herself applying for a new position in a draper?s shop, the best in the Lancashire mill town of Tidsley. She soon rises from being a draper's assistant to having her own dress shop. But Jane pays for her success. She works hard, she is frustrated by the prejudices of the class system, and she has to deal with some difficult relationships.
This 1939 country-house novel is set at Saunby Priory, a large house somewhere in England which has seen better times. We are shown the two Marwood girls, who are nearly grown-up, their father, the widower Major Marwood, and their aunt; then, as soon as their lives have been described, the Major proposes marriage to a woman much younger than himself - and many changes begin.
SOMEONE AT A DISTANCE
Avery North has been contentedly married to Ellen for 20 years, they have two children and live in the rural commuter belt outside London. Then his mother advertises for a companion, and the French girl who arrives sets her sights on Avery, callously threatening the happy marriage.
THEY WERE SISTERS
Three sisters marry very different men and the choices they make determine whether they will flourish, be tamed or be repressed. Lucy's husband is her beloved companion; Vera's husband bores her and she turns elsewhere; and Charlotte marries Geoffrey, a boorish, hard-drinking salesman who evolves into a domestic dicator, and turns a high-spirited naive young girl into a deeply unhappy woman.