‘Rose’s Ever After’ by Chrissie Bradshaw is the second book in The Colliery Rows saga. set in the North East of England in Northumberland and revolving around a small mining village and its residents.
We are in 1955, Rose is a young mum and married to Danny, her childhood sweetheart. Everything is perfect but for one thing. Her heart is with the animals. She misses them so much that when a chance to utilise the skills she has comes along at a farm, helping to care for older pit ponies she goes for it. Being the 1950s the fact she is working is looked down upon from many corners but she ploughs on regardless. Then then the worst blow ever comes to Rose and her family which leaves her facing heartbreak, shattered dreams and even hardship. As her life has turned a different corner she gains a chink of light from new challenges that give her a renewed purpose in life.
As with ‘Rose’s Choice’ I read this story in no time. I can understand why people liken Chrissie Bradshaw’s writing to Catherine Cookson. Her writing is just mesmerising. I was right back with Rose and every trial and hardship she had to face my heart was torn for this dignified, strong and loyal woman. I wished I could take some of her pain away somehow. She faces everything and gains even more inner strength from the direness she faces I am sure of it.
I loved being back with Rose and the Kelly’s. The way of life in the North East combined with real historical events mentioned really created the setting and sense of place for me too. Altogether a worthy follow on to ‘Rose’s Choice’ and one I got immersed in immediately again.
Thank you to Rachel’s Random Resources and Vallum Publishing for my copy of the book.