Almost one month ago, one of my colleague-friend shared “Mersey Maids” with me. Before that, I never read Anne Baker or truly speaking, I never heard of her. As per my friend, “Mersey Maids” is really good book but in my opinion, definition of good book vary from person to person and interest of that person in that specific genre. When I started to read this book, I was thinking about genre of this book. Obviously, its fiction but what kind of fiction? Still I confused but I think, I will put it in Fiction-General category.
When widower Henry Knell loses his glove-making business to the Dransfields, his life is well and truly ruined. With his six young daughters, he moves into rented rooms in a Merseyside back street. Meanwhile, Hattie and Maggie, the eldest girls, are trying to hold the family together. Sophie Dransfields’ husband, Daniel, takes pity on the poverty-stricken Knells and offers Maggie a job as a maid in the Dransfields’ nursery. Here, Maggie came to know that Lenora Dransfields, wife of Stanley Dransfields and mother of Sophie Dransfields, did defraud her father and took over Knell glove factory.
When Maggie tells defraud story to her elder sister Hattie, She thinks that they are living in poverty and suffering because of Lenora’s cheat and decides to know, how it happened but destiny decided something else. Maggie’s beautiful blonde hair soon catches the eye of Sophie’s brother Tom. Hattie joins Maggie as Olivia’s, mother of Lenora Dransfields, maid when existing maid left Dransfields house for good reason. Luke – Tom’s elder brother – is equally enchanted by Hattie.
At some point, Maggie getting marry with Tom while Hattie cheated and pregnant by Luke. Tom and Maggie adopts Hattie’s child. Tom leaves house and family business for Maggie and starts his own cinema. Olivia is very good with Hattie and shares her secrets with Hattie where Hattie found, how her father cheated by Lenora and forced Lenora to pay difference to her father. History repeats when Adam, son of Sophie, decides to marry Becky, daughter of Maggie, and Lenora took over Tom’s cinema. Book covers almost 17 years of story. Story starts with Maggie’s entry in Dransfields house as maid to Marriage of Becky.
There is a fine line between Greed and Ambition. Ambition is like a life long goal you want to achieve while Greed is something like being selfish and wanting something to only yourself but someone can easily cross line from Ambition to Greed. Most of the time, Poverty leads a person from Ambition to Greed. “Mersey Maids” shows this difference through Lenora’s character. Some people still keep up ethics and family values in poverty which is fascinatingly described by Knell’s family where each member stands with family in good or bad.
Indeed, this book is not for all. Story is moving very slowly but it’s so much compelling.
Source [Wiki]: Anne Salmond was born just before the outbreak of World War I, the daughter of Geoffrey Salmond who later became the professional head of the Royal Air Force. She was educated at Lady Margaret Hall, Oxford, and lived with her father and mother in both Egypt and India. She married Valentine Baker (1910–1979), and lived in Salisbury.
Anne Baker writer of romantic novels, trained as a nurse in England. She then married and lived in Libya and Nigeria before returning to Birkenhead to work as a health visitor. She now lives with her husband in Merseyside.
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