A powerful, page-turning saga set in turn-of-the-century Newcastle
More than a decade has gone by since Esther Cunningham, weakened by the consumption which would soon take her life, left her precious daughter in her mother's care. Now eighteen, Lorna Cunningham is eagerly awaiting the day when she can leave the Newcastle house in which she's known only heartache. The Arabian ancestry of the father she has never known has meant that she has been nothing more than an unwelcome guest in her grandmother's home, forced to take second place to her spoilt cousin, Rose, who has wanted for neither love nor material comforts.
Lorna takes comfort from her growing friendship with bookseller Edwin Randall, who shares her love of reading and inspires her with his passion to improve the terrible conditions of the Newcastle slums. But their relationship is overshadowed by Lorna's infatuation with the handsome and charismatic Maurice Haldane - the man Rose is determined she herself will marry and who has the power to change all their lives for ever...
'Romance, heartache and local history make a magical mixture...passion on every page' Northern Echo - Northern Echo
'An ultimately heartwarming tale. Unlike some sagas, all the main characters here are well drawn and their motivations clearly set down. Elsewhere, the baddies often have totally black hearts, and the goodies are angelic beyond belief, but Brown writes more subtly than that, which makes for a satisfying read' Historical Novels Review - Historical Novels Review
Benita Brown was born and brought up in Newcastle by her English mother and Indian father. She went to drama school in London where she met her husband who, also from Newcastle, was working for the BBC. Not long after, the couple returned to their home town and, after working as a teacher and broadcaster and bringing up four children, Benita became a full-time writer.