A Place to Call Home

A Place to Call Home

Val Wood

Fiction

Ellen thought she'd always live in the remote, pretty coastal village where she grew up. After all, her husband, Harry, works on a farm where he's guaranteed a job and home for life. But when the old landowner dies and the couple and their young children are forced from their cottage, the future is suddenly bleak. Rather than stay – and starve – in the countryside they love, Harry sets out to find a job in the factories and mills of nearby Hull, and Ellen must leave behind everything she's ever known to follow her husband and build a new life for her family on the unfamiliar city streets.The road ahead is full of hardships and challenges. But with love and determination, they make the best of things, forging friendships with other newcomers and refugees; even helping them to succeed in their new surroundings.Then tragedy threatens Ellen's fragile happiness. How much more can she sacrifice before they find a place to call home? Val...
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Annie

Annie

Val Wood

Fiction

Can her courage lead her to a life of happiness? Annie Swinburn is harbouring a terrible secret. She has killed a man. The man was evil in every possible way, but she knows that her only fate if she stays in the slums of Hull is a hanging. And so she runs. As fast as she can, and as far as she can – up the river, along hidden paths of the Humber and into a new and familiar territory where she can start a new life. There she meets Toby Linton – a man born into a good life but now estranged from his family. He and his brother Matt earn a dangerous living as smugglers, but Annie soon realises they have more in common than she thought. And this new way of life might just offer her the chance of love, in spite of all the tragedy that has gone before... If you enjoy books by...
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Fallen Angels

Fallen Angels

Val Wood

Fiction

After her dastardly husband Billy tries to sell her at a wife sale, Lily Fowler finds herself alone, frightened and heavily pregnant on the streets of Hull. Her brave attempts to find work are futile and when she is turned away from the workhouse and other such establishments for women in her "condition", Lily is forced to swallow her last iota of respectability and work in a brothel in Leadenhall Square.Unexpectedly things begin to look up. Lily sees potential where others can only see destitution and ruin and soon forges strong relationships with the other women there. They are all good-hearted women who have fallen on hard times and together Lily and her "fallen angels" outwit the low-life brothel-keeper and work to turn the house in Leadenhall Square into something altogether more respectable. And before any of them know it, doors swing open, lost loves are recovered and the happy endings none of them dared to dream of begin to materialise ...
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The Kitchen Maid

The Kitchen Maid

Val Wood

Fiction

Jenny is determined to make her own way in the world, and she secures a job as the kitchen maid in a grand house in Yorkshire. Gradually, she gains the attention of the young master of the house, and they fall in love.But their hopes and dreams turn to nightmares, culminating in a scandal that will force Jenny to leave behind everything she knows.Cast aside by her own family, Jenny faces many difficulties until an usual promise changes the course of her life. Jenny the kitchen maid becomes the mistress of her own grand house. Although she tries to fit in with this new world, however, she never forgets the words that the gypsy told her: that one day she will return to where she was once happy - and discover her true love . . .If you've liked books by Katie Flynn and Dilly Court, you'll love Val's heartwarming stories of triumph over adversity.
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A Mother's Choice

A Mother's Choice

Val Wood

Fiction

For ten years, Delia has had to fend for herself and her son Jack, and as a young unmarried mother, life has never been easy. Every new coat and pair of shoes was bought with what little money she could scrape together as a singer on the stage. But when the theatre work dries up, Delia faces a dilemma: continue the search for employment with no knowing whether she'll find the stability and security her son needs, or return to the place that should be home . . . where only spite and hatred await them. Desperate now, a chance encounter suddenly presents a lifeline. But Delia is faced with an impossible, heart-wrenching choice. Can she bear to leave Jack behind, hoping another family will care for him? Will they ever be reunited? What else can a mother do to give her son the life he deserves?Val Wood's wonderful historical sagas are perfect for readers of Dilly Court, Maggie Hope and Rosie Goodwin.
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Rosa's Island

Rosa's Island

Val Wood

Fiction

Rosa grew up an orphan in a remote, watery island fastness on the wild East coast of Yorkshire. Taken in as a small child by the motherly Mrs Drew, she realised as she grew up that this large and seemingly close farming family contained many troubled souls. Mr Drew, whose religious fervour held a dark secret; Jim, the eldest son, who was terrified of something from his past; Delia, longing to escape from the island; and tall, handsome, confident Matthew, who wanted only one thing - Rosa herself.But Rosa's background was one of mystery. Her mother, before she drowned in the dyke near their home, had always promised that one day Rosa's father would return to her - a handsome Spaniard, with jewels and silks in treasure chests, sailing in on a ship with golden sails. Mr Drew knew the secret of Rosa's past - and so did the two mysterious Irishmen, who came back to the island after many years and who threatened everything which Rosa held most...
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The Songbird

The Songbird

Val Wood

Fiction

The choice was hers - fame and fortune or true love.Poppy Mazzini, born in Hull over her father's grocery shop, lives up to the promise of her fiery red hair and Italian ancestry. Her lovely singing voice and good looks lead her to her great ambition - to go on the stage and see her name top of the bill. She becomes a music hall star both in her native town and in the south, after an appearance in the theatre at Brighton - she even performs in Paris, to tremendous acclaim. But when her first love, an ambitious shoemaker in her home town, becomes engaged to someone else Poppy is devastated. She disappears, believing that she will never return to her life of stardom. But her fame cannot be kep a secret...
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The Innkeeper's Daughter

The Innkeeper's Daughter

Val Wood

Fiction

Holderness, 1846.For reliable, thirteen-year-old Bella, life isn't turning out quite as she'd hoped. She lives at the Woodman Inn - an ancient hostelry run by her family in the Yorkshire countryside - surrounded by two older brothers who never pull their weight and a flighty younger sister. When Bella learns not only that her father is seriously ill, but that her mother is expecting a fifth child, her dreams of leaving home to become a schoolteacher are quickly dashed.Times are hard, and when their father dies Bella also has to take on the role of mother to her baby brother. Her days are brightened by the occasional visit from Jamie Lucan - the eighteen-year-old son of a wealthy landowner in a neighbouring coastal village. Also grieving the loss of a parent, Jamie has more in common with Bella than she thinks.When her mother announces out of the blue that she wants to move the family to Hull, Bella is forced to leave...
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Nobody's Child

Nobody's Child

Val Wood

Fiction

When Laura Page returns to the remote Holderness village of Welwick, it is to try and discover the mystery of her mother Susannah's early life. Now a prosperous businesswoman in Hull, Susannah never speaks of her childhood, when she was brought up with the terrible stigma of bastardy – of being nobody's child.Susannah's own mother, Mary-Ellen, born into poverty and living in a labourer's cottage, had the misfortune to fall in love with a local landowner's son. She was his one and only great love, but was unable to acknowledge their child and had to watch her growing up in hardship. As the years passed and Laura began to be curious about her mother's past, so too did she become aware of the mystery about her own father.
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Every Mother's Son

Every Mother's Son

Val Wood

Fiction

Harriet and Fletcher Tuke have worked hard to raise their children well. Daniel, the eldest son, has always accepted that his birth father died soon after he was born, and Fletcher has raised Daniel as his own. But as Daniel comes of age and begins to fall in love with childhood friend Beatrice Hart, he can’t help but wonder about his heritage – his olive skin and dark eyes reminding him daily of the difference between him and his siblings, and between his and Beatrice’s families. Meanwhile, shocking truths about Fletcher’s own family line are suddenly brought to the surface, revealing a connection between the two families. Daniel’s wish to learn about his bloodline takes him to Europe, where decisions about his future take shape. But will it be one he can share with Beatrice? And as Harriet hopefully awaits his return back home on the farm, she could never imagine that answers to questions about her own family are also just on the horizon. If you enjoy books by Katie Flynn and Dilly Court, you'll love Val's heartwarming stories of triumph over adversity. 'Full of characters the reader will care about . . . a heart-warming story filled with compelling action' Rosie Goodwin
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Homecoming Girls

Homecoming Girls

Val Wood

Fiction

SynopsisHull, 1874. The beautiful, mysterious Jewel Newmarch, adopted as a baby, turns heads wherever she goes - her exotic looks point to her origins far away from the streets of Hull. Even at her cousin Elizabeth's wedding, she is the belle of the ball. But as she looks on at the happy, newly-married couple she feels a restlessness and intense longing to know her own roots. And so she decides to return to her birthplace in America, taking the bride's twin sister Clara as her companion. In discovering the mysteries of Jewel's past the girls realise that this is a life-changing voyage of discovery for both of them, as they learn important lessons about family, friendship, love and home. But most importantly, love...
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Rich Girl, Poor Girl

Rich Girl, Poor Girl

Val Wood

Fiction

About the BookChristmas 1860. Polly, already living in grinding poverty, finds herself alone on the streets of Hull when her mother dies in childbirth. Rosalie, brought up in affluence and comfort on the other side of town, loses her own mother in similar circumstances and on the same day. Polly takes a job as scullery maid in Rosalie's lonely house, and the two girls form an unlikely friendship. Travelling together to the North Yorkshire Moors they discover a new kind of life and find unexpected joy and fulfilment.
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No Place for a Woman

No Place for a Woman

Val Wood

Fiction

When Lucy's parents are killed in a train crash, her kindly uncle steps in to look after the little girl – to the initial apprehension of his wife and her son. However, Lucy's sweet, spirited charm slowly wins over her new family, and as she overcomes the trauma of her childhood, she grows up inspired to become a doctor, just like her father.But studying medicine in London takes Lucy far from her home in Hull and the people she loves, and she has to battle to be accepted in a man's world.With the dark clouds of the First World War gathering on the horizon, an even greater challenge approaches. Can a woman find her place on the front line of battle? Will Lucy be able to follow her dreams – and find love – in a world shattered by war?
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The Maid's Secret

The Maid's Secret

Val Wood

Fiction

An exclusive short story from the much-loved author Val WoodThe truth could change the lives of all those around her . . .Ellen has worked as a servant girl since she was twelve – her mother had always taught her that she must earn her own keep until she finds someone to marry. After a year of back-breaking work, a chance encounter leads her to a new position as kitchen maid at Hart Holme Manor – the grandest estate around for miles. There, against the wishes of the household, she befriends the owners' son, Christopher. If the true nature of their closeness were ever revealed it could not only jeopardise both Christopher and Ellen's positions, but carry consequences that could affect the rest of their lives . . .If you enjoy books by Katie Flynn and Dilly Court, you'll love Val's heartwarming stories of triumph over adversity.
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