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For twenty-five years Ken McCoy ran his own engineering company. During this time he also worked as a free-lance artist, greeting card designer and after-dinner entertainer. He has appeared on TV, radio and as a comedian. He is married and had 5 children and 6 grand-children.
Seeking refuge from the London Blitz by moving to Leeds, kindly landlady Liz Morris befriends them: the scarred, wisecracking man, who isn't afraid to overstep the mark if the cause is a good one, and his clever and resilient little girl. Billie needs every ounce of courage she possesses when her father joins the Army just before the D-Day landings and fails to return. Though Liz is happy to raise the child as her own, Billie is claimed by her Uncle Cedric, an outwardly respectable and prosperous solicitor. But he is also a ruthless criminal mastermind who will stop at nothing to secure the fortune to which Billie is sole heiress. Confident of his superior strength and cunning, he foolishly overlooks the fact that she is her father's daughter: resourceful, quick-witted, and ready to seize any chance she can to escape his deadly clutches and return to her beloved Aunt Liz.
Eleven-year-old Billy Clegg and his big sister Peggy disappear from their home in Leeds after a suspicious fire in a local mill. The owner says the children caused it by lighting fireworks on Mischief Night. Their widowed mother Betty, badly injured in the incident, doesn't know if her children are alive or dead. She prefers to think of them as being elsewhere. Following a series of accidents and adventures, the resourceful duo find themselves a long way away from bleak post-war Britain, earning a living in an entirely unexpected way. They make a success of their new lives but both of them are haunted by memories of the fire and the possibility that they caused their own mother's death. It takes all the ingenuity of Betty's two determined suitors to reunite the family - and the complications don't end there. Fans of Jessica Blair and Dilly Court will enjoy the latest heart-warming nostalgic story from Ken McCoy.
1914. Mining engineer Tommy Birch goes off to war, leaving his new wife Rita behind in Pontefract. On the front line, Tommy runs afoul of a German mine and is reported as missing, presumed deceased by his fellow soldiers. But Tommy isn't dead. Found behind enemy lines, wearing only a pair of boots stolen from a dead German, Tommy is picked up by the enemy who believe him to be one of their own. He spends weeks recuperating in a German military hospital, where he meets, and quickly falls in love with, a nurse named Anna Kohler who tends him back to health. Meanwhile, back in Pontefract, Rita is living with Tommy's family when she receives notification that Tommy has been killed in action. But his body still hasn't been found, and Rita never gives up hope that Tommy is out there somewhere, so great is her love for him. Will Rita ever be reunited with Tommy, or is she destined to spend a lifetime wondering if her husband is still alive?
Lucy Bailey is not a girl to take no for an answer. When she asks her friend Billy Wellington to help her rescue a stray dog, she has no idea of the potential repercussions. A serious crime is committed while Billy is absent from the children's home where he lives and, when suspicion falls on him, the police decide that the safest thing for everybody is to lock him away in a mental institution. Lucy refuses to believe that Billy has done anything wrong, and enlists her cool-headed teenage brother Arnold to help. DI Daniel Earnshawe, who has his own doubts about the police's conclusions, turns out to be unexpectedly helpful, and Billy has someone else on his side too: Helen Durkin, a beautiful, damaged girl who has been seeking to make amends for her past. With so many daring and resourceful people battling on his behalf, it looks as though Billy's freedom will soon be won - before an unexpected development sees Arnold too fall foul of the law. Refusing to give up hope of winning freedom for them, Lucy chases up the few remaining clues while Daniel and Helen resort to an alternative form of justice . . .
When Lily Robinson sees the telegraph boy cycling down Perseverance Street, she knows that he's coming to deliver bad news. Clutching the telegram in her trembling hands, at eight months pregnant and mother to three-year-old Michael, Lily learns that she must now face life as a widow. Fortuitously, she is soon visited by acquaintances, Bernard and Edith Oldroyd, who, hearing of her plight, offer to take Michael home with them for the weekend and Lily gratefully accepts. But to her horror, just days later, the Oldroyds disappear, along with her son. With the help of her redoubtable Auntie Dee and ex-Special Forces soldier, Charlie Cleghorn, Lily takes the investigation into their own hands, scouring the country and, ultimately, war-torn Europe in search of Michael, doing everything in her power to bring him home.
When Susan, Jimmy and Billy Bairstow are found alive in their bombed home, they are nicknamed 'the miracle children'. But losing their parents and having to live with their Aunt Dorothy doesn't feel very lucky. Especially when, unable to cope with all three children, Dorothy sends Billy to an orphanage. Susan and Jimmy are shocked and lonely, and when they then hear that Billy has died, they decide to run away. It is on this same adventure that they meet Freddie. Susan feels the first stirrings of love for the young serviceman but chances are they will never meet again - Freddie is off to war. Susan and Jimmy reluctantly return to Dorothy's house, but there are silver linings in the clouds ahead - including their aunt's revelation that Billy is alive. Only now it will take all of their strength and courage to find their little brother and bring him home.
Hope Street may be just an ordinary terraced street in Leeds, but it's the world to Maggie Fish. And when her father returns home from the war the whole family looks forward to happier times. But then Maggie's mother dies giving birth to a little boy, leaving Johnnie Fish a bitter widower. He can never look at his son without remembering that this child caused his wife's death. By contrast, Maggie can do no wrong in her father's eyes and he pushes her forward to sing at Hope Street Working Men's Club. Fifteen-year-old Maggie has her first taste of show-business - and she wants more. With the help of Charlie Chipperfield, a talented piano-player, new vaudeville act - Fish and Chipperfield - is born. But the clubs in Yorkshire only offer them a limited audience and musical tastes are changing. It may spell the end for their double act, but for Maggie the road to fame and fortune is only just the beginning . . .
When Annie Jackson's father doesn't return from war, her mother remarries. But while the outside world thinks Leonard Spode is a loving husband and father, behind closed doors he reveals his true colours - and Annie is forced to grow up very quickly. In her brave attempts to expose Spode for the monster he is, she finds himself branded a trouble-maker, and sent to a children's home - where she discovers she is pregnant. One thought keeps Annie going: that Spode will one day be brought to justice. If not in her lifetime, then in her daughter's, to whom she plans to tell the full story on her 18th birthday . . . Set in post-war Yorkshire, ANNIE'S LEGACY is a powerful story of one girl's battle against all that life throws at her, and her determination to have the last word.
On the day of his dad's funeral, ten-year-old Jacky Gaskell meets Frank McGovern for the first time. For when Frank is hanged for a murder he did not commit, Jacky's mother Maureen feels she must tell Jacky the truth: Frank was his real father. On the day of the execution Maureen loses the only man she ever truly loved and must now raise her three children, Brian, Ellie and Jacky, alone. Once the scandal gets out, there is little sympathy from the neighbours, and Jacky has a hard time at the local school from children and teachers alike. And there is little comfort to be had at home as Brian suddenly turns against his younger brother, constantly provoking arguments and fights. Although he only met Frank briefly, Jacky is convinced he was innocent and feels duty bound to clear his name. Enlisting the help of his sister Ellie, the pair embark on a series of plans and stunts to bring the real killer to justice. However, when their actions backfire, they not only attract the attention of the police, but the more sinister attentions of the real murderer, who will stop at nothing to silence the Gaskells.
The only life Dove McKenna has ever known has been one of the open road. Living with her parents and her brother in a show wagon, travelling from town to town, performing for folk happy enough to pay them for their entertainment, whilst dismissing them as 'gippos' and 'thieves' behind their backs. But it is not until after their mother's death that they settle in one place long enough for Dove to really feel her difference. The McKennas set up camp on a patch of barren land just outside Leeds and Dove and Henry finally get the chance to go to school. And though at St Joseph's they encounter prejudice from pupils, teachers and parents, they find friendships too. Dove begins to dream of acceptance and perhaps even a better home life. For, when sober, their father is an amiable enough soul, but when drunk he can be a monster. And Malachy McKenna is drunk more often than not . . .