Dear Mrs. Bird. (Emmy Lake Chronicles #1) A.J. Pearce. 2018. 281 pages. [Source: Library]
First sentence: When I first saw the advertisement in the newspaper I thought I might actually burst.
Premise/plot: This one is set in London in 1941. Emmy Lake, our heroine, has big dreams. She'd love nothing more than to be a journalist, a war correspondent to be precise. A misunderstanding at a job interview leads to somewhat comic results. She's hired as a typist at a journal, sure, but it's the Woman's Friend magazine. And she'll be working for Mrs. Henrietta Bird, the advice columnist. She'll be reading all the letters that come in and throwing out all the INAPPROPRIATE ones. You see, Mrs. Bird has a long list of subjects that are TABOO. Emmy doesn't find the letters inappropriate or scandalous. She finds them honest and refreshing. Real women--of all ages--in real situations feeling perplexed and troubled. But how can she help when she's under direct orders to throw them straight into the trash?!
Well, Emmy CAN'T throw some of the letters away. She cares too much. And Mrs. Bird, well, Mrs. Bird (in Emmy's opinion) doesn't care at all. Is it worth risking her job to help these women?
When she's not working for Mrs. Bird, she's a volunteer telephone operator for the Auxiliary Fire Service. The novel shows her at work in both places....and also follows her personal life.
My thoughts: I really enjoyed this one. It was so good. Especially if historical fiction set in London during World War II is one of your favorite sub-genres. (It's one of mine.) I loved meeting Emmy and her roommate, Bunty. I loved being immersed in this world. There's a hint of romance--but only the lightest trace. I would say that FRIENDSHIPS and the WAR matter more than romance.
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