About The Book:
We stand in the back of the hall as the children troop in. Big ones, little ones. Straggly hair, cropped hair, curls… the adults surge forward to choose and soon there is just one child left, a little girl sitting on the floor. She is thin as a string bean and her sleeve is ragged and damp – like she’s been chewing it.
1939. War has broken out – hundreds of children are evacuated to the countryside to keep them safe from the bombs raining down on the cities. Wrenched from her family in the East End and sent more than a hundred miles away, seven-year-old Pearl Posner must adapt to a new life away from everything familiar.
Vivienne didn’t ask for an evacuee child. In fact, she’s not sure her heart can take it. So many years, so many disappointments… Vivi’s ability to feel love left her the day she learned the truth about her husband Edmund, and when she made the worst decision of her life and left her cherished sister to her fate. But like it or not, Pearl is here to stay, and what with the rumours about what’s happening to children in mainland Europe, it might be the last safe place for her.
As Pearl and Vivi learn how to live together, they discover that they have a connection that runs more deeply than they could ever have guessed – from before Pearl was born, and deep into Vivienne’s past. And will it be Pearl – the little girl who says so little and sees so much – who forces Vivi to finally confront what happened in her marriage… and to the long-lost sister she loved so dearly and let fall so far, just when she needed Vivi most?
A beautiful and emotional wartime historical novel – heartbreaking, moving and unforgettable. Perfect for fans of Orphan Train and Before We Were Yours.
When I was Yours by Lizzie Page is an immersive story set during WWII. During this time, children are being sent from London to the countryside for safety. Vivienne Lowe does not want an evacuee child , but fate has a way of stepping in and she soon finds herself a host to a seven year old Jewish girl, Pearl Posner. In Pearl, Vivienne slowly starts to find herself and opens herself up to love which she neither wants or thinks she deserves. Little does Vivienne know, but Pearl is going to bring Vivienne back to a past she has never forgotten or forgiven herself for. Will Vivienne finally find her way out of all of the hurt in her past?
There is something about WWII novels that has a certain quality to it that remarkably atmospheric and beautiful even though it is set during a horrible war. People were so different back then and you can really see the determination in people to help during the war effort. Lizzie Page really poured her heart out in this story especially when it came to both Vivienne and her sister, Olive. Vivienne is the more practical of the two. She has her heart set on marrying Edmund, the best friend of her cousin, even though her sister, Olive thinks Edmund is the wrong one for her. Olive is the artist, I would say she is more of a rebel and doesn’t quite fit into the norm of women during that time period. Olive is an artist and is passionate and determined. Often times it leads to both sisters butting heads and not seeing eye to eye.
This story is told in dual timelines, during the the start of WWI and in the present right at the beginning of WWII in 1939. While I loved the present story, my heart really went out to the women during the war effort in 1914. Lizzie Page really showed what is was like for women who became nurses to help soldiers in distress. You can really see the research and the love that went into the writing and it really shines through page after page. I loved learning about FANY, a first aid nursing Yeomanry which was an all female registered charity.
I will admit that at first, I did feel sorry for Vivienne as she seems to be trapped in a loveless marriage and I felt like she had no backbone, which for a good part of the story she doesn’t. But, slowly I started to see her growth as both a woman capable of love, capable of making friends and having a life outside of her marriage and finally, finding it in her heart to love a child, something she never had during her marriage.
If you love an immersive war time story, I encourage you to read When I was Yours. It is heartbreaking and uplifting at the same time. Lizzie Page shows true strength and perseverance at the heart of this story. This is definitely a story to be remembered.
About The Author:
I love reading ALL the books, and I’ve always loved reading the adventures of women in the past so it seemed natural to me to write historical fiction.
I live with my family by the sea in South East England. And with my dog. How did I forget my dog? I love traveling and have enjoyed living in Tokyo and Paris. I’ve had lots of different jobs from waitressing and teaching to admin and bingo-calling – but being a writer is my absolute favorite.
I’d love to hear what you think of my books – feel free to send me a message on twitter @LizziePagewrite