Mary Jane Staples - Author

About the Author

Mary Jane Staples was born and brought up in the Walworth area of South London. She now lives in Surrey and is the author of over thirty bestselling novels about cockney life, many of which feature the well-loved Adams family.

Featured books by Mary Jane Staples

A Sister's Secret

A Sister's Secret

Author: Mary Jane Staples Format: Paperback Release Date: 21/11/2013

An impetuous decision to marry has left the young Lady Caroline widowed and with two estates in her name. She is now in a position to live her life to the full, socialising with London's finest aristocracy, but her unhappy experience has put her off marrying again. Her younger sister, Annabelle, on the other hand, is falling in love with a man who is notoriously unfaithful. But Annabelle refuses to believe it, so Caroline knows she must intervene before she sees her sister fall victim to the same miserable fate she experienced. And so she hires the charming Captain Burnside, a retired British Army officer, to distract her. An adventurer who is both charming and witty, he seems the perfect man to tear Annabelle away from her infatuation. But things don't go quite according to Caroline's plan.

Other books by Mary Jane Staples

Ups And Downs

Ups And Downs

Author: Mary Jane Staples Format: Paperback Release Date: 27/07/2018

As the 1950s progress, several unexpected happenings ruffle the usually calm atmosphere of Adams family life. Sammy and Boots are troubled by the first stirrings of industrial unrest, as the unions start to flex their muscles and old loyalties change, while an attractive new employee causes Sammy some troubles of a different kind. The older generation are more than a little surprised at what they see around them as society moves on and the lives of the youngsters are being taken over by rock 'n' roll. Young Emily, still only thirteen but old beyond her years, catches the eye of a teddy boy, while Linda is pursued by a smooth-talking young man. But good sense and good luck prevail, and the Adams family find the strength to cope with these challenging times.

A Sister's Secret

A Sister's Secret

Author: Mary Jane Staples Format: Paperback Release Date: 21/11/2013

An impetuous decision to marry has left the young Lady Caroline widowed and with two estates in her name. She is now in a position to live her life to the full, socialising with London's finest aristocracy, but her unhappy experience has put her off marrying again. Her younger sister, Annabelle, on the other hand, is falling in love with a man who is notoriously unfaithful. But Annabelle refuses to believe it, so Caroline knows she must intervene before she sees her sister fall victim to the same miserable fate she experienced. And so she hires the charming Captain Burnside, a retired British Army officer, to distract her. An adventurer who is both charming and witty, he seems the perfect man to tear Annabelle away from her infatuation. But things don't go quite according to Caroline's plan.

Out Of The Shadows

Out Of The Shadows

Author: Mary Jane Staples Format: Paperback Release Date: 15/07/2013

Times move on for the Adams family in south London, and as business prospers, there are new worries to deal with. A young woman arrives who is intent on ruining Sammy Adams' winter fashion show, and Sammy must deal with her unwelcome attention. Boots has to find a solution when one of his female employees tells him about a sinister visitor, but he doesn't realize that his family are being observed. Out of the shadows come dark and mysterious figures from the past who intrude on Boots, Polly and the twins, and his adopted daughter Rosie.Meanwhile Rosie has her hands full as her daughter Emily continues to rebel against everything around her. How will the Adams family cope, as trouble seems to lurk around every corner?

A Sign Of The Times An Adams Family Saga Novel

A Sign Of The Times An Adams Family Saga Novel

Author: Mary Jane Staples Format: Paperback Release Date: 04/02/2013

It's 1959, and Boots Adams and his wife Polly are at their favourite Camberwell pub when they witness with horror a sudden and vicious attack on the barman, Joe, by a knife-wielding thug. Is this a sign of the times?Is contempt for old traditions and enthusiasm for everything new and fashionable going to threaten the Adams family and their easy-going existence? While Gemma is courted by one of the young men who works for her father, her twin brother James finds himself affected by his girlfriend's intriguing family secrets.And just who is the mysterious new student from Finland who arrives at Gemma's college?

Love for a Soldier

Love for a Soldier

Author: Mary Jane Staples Format: Paperback Release Date: 08/11/2012

France, 1918. Sophia, the rebellious daughter of a distinguished German general, is on her way to the town of Douai to elope with the man of her dreams - a young army officer - against her parents' wishes. On her way, she witnesses a dramatic battle in the skies that leaves an English pilot without a plane and under the misapprehension that Sophia is on his side. She has no choice but to agree to assist him in his attempt to avoid capture, and he joins her in the family car she has stolen, trailed by both the German Army and a staff officer under strict instructions from Sophia's father to bring her home. With their pursuers hot on their heels, how will Sophia explain her behaviour, protecting a man she is supposed to hate? And after sharing so many adventures, will she be able to turn the flying officer in when the time comes?

Nurse Anna's War A First World War Saga

Nurse Anna's War A First World War Saga

Author: Mary Jane Staples Format: Paperback Release Date: 24/11/2011

Brussels, 1915 It is a frosty April evening in occupied Belgium when a beautiful young woman finds herself on the run from the enemy. Also being pursued is Ned Scott, a British army major who has been badly injured. The pair find themselves at a hospital run by the famous Edith Cavell, who agrees to treat the major while offering them both refuge and a false identity - she names the young girl Anna. However it seems no one is safe, and as details of Anna's true identity emerge, the enemy's net tightens. Meanwhile, the major is torn between his desire to stand by brave Edith and the knowledge that he must escape. Closely watched wherever they go, is there anyone these three people can trust? And will love have the power to overcome the horrors of war?

Year Of Victory An Adams Family Saga Novel

Year Of Victory An Adams Family Saga Novel

Author: Mary Jane Staples Format: Paperback Release Date: 31/07/2011

The seemingly endless war was at last coming to a conclusion. But for the country and for the Adams family, there were still many tribulations to be overcome. Flying bombs - the deadly V1 buzzbombs - appeared over London, causing dreadful destruction, and the struggle continued to overcome the most powerful war machine the world had ever known. But amongst the Cockney community there were lighter moments, too. For Felicity, Eloise and Lizzy Somers there was the happiness of knowing that their menfolk were safe and well. Daniel Adams and his American girlfriend even had a brief meeting with Winston Churchill himself. And as the Third Reich began to show signs of collapse, the scent of victory was in the air.

A Wartime Marriage

A Wartime Marriage

Author: Mary Jane Staples Format: Paperback Release Date: 28/02/2011

It is 1918; the Kaiser's empire is about to fall and Captain Harry Phillips, a prisoner of war in a Romanian hospital, has had a very hard time of it. Then, out of the blue, comes an offer he can't refuse, a ticket home to his beloved England and to the arms of his much missed fiancee Elizabeth. But this ticket comes with a heavy price to pay; Harry must marry beautiful, headstrong Princess Irena of Moldova, who's only hope of survival is to leave the country and he must risk both their lives by escorting her back to England. As they set off on their long and treacherous journey with enemies at every turn, Harry begins to realise that Irena is not only dangerous but extremely precious cargo.Will he sacrifice everything for this wartime marriage?

Sons And Daughters

Sons And Daughters

Author: Mary Jane Staples Format: Paperback Release Date: 31/01/2011

By the year 1949, life in Walworth has almost returned to normal. Sammy and Boots, now in a highly successful partnership, are rebuilding the old family firm. But an old enemy resurfaces - Mr Ben Ford, better known as the Fat Man, who seems determined to ruin the various branches of this growing business. It takes all the well-known Adams ingenuity and determination to outwit the thugs in the Fat Man's pay. Meanwhile, an attractive blonde woman shopping in the market has caught Boots's eye. But Polly does not need to feel apprehensive - the sight of this woman has stirred the worst of memories for Boots, from the darkest days of the war. And on a happier note, there is some surprising news for Chinese Lady - news which will affect the whole of the Adams family.

The Way Ahead

The Way Ahead

Author: Mary Jane Staples Format: Paperback Release Date: 30/12/2010

It is 1944, and the Adams family, along with the rest of the people of the United Kingdom, are beginning to weary of the seemingly never-ending war against Hitler's Germany. Bobby Somers and Helene, living dangerously in the French countryside with a group of Resistance fighters, find themselves in great peril. Boots returns from the war in Italy, to the delight of Polly and their two little rascals, twins James and Gemma - but he brings with him a German prisoner who has a horrifying story to tell of the concentration camps. And while Sammy and Susie Adams are keeping the family business going as best they can during the privations of wartime London, their son Daniel catches the eye of a lively young American girl who brings a welcome breath of fresh air to the Adams household, so many of whose younger members are doing their bit for the war in various far-flung places of the world. As plans for the long-awaited invasion of France get under way there is excitement and danger, but love continues to blossom in the most difficult of circumstances.

On Mother Brown's Doorstep

On Mother Brown's Doorstep

Author: Mary Jane Staples Format: Paperback Release Date: 02/11/2010

The big event of the Walworth year was to be the wedding of Sammy Adams, King of Camberwell, to Miss Susie Brown. Everyone was looking forward to it, and Susie was particularly overjoyed when her soldier brother suddenly turned up on leave from service in India in time for the approaching 'knees-up'. The reason for Will's extended leave wasn't so good, for bad health had struck him and he didn't know how long the army would keep him, or how he could find a civvy job in the slump of the 20s. When he - literally - picked Annie Ford up off the pavement in King and Queen Street, his worries were compounded, for Annie was a bright, brave, personable young woman and Will knew that if he wasn't careful he'd find himself falling in love. And over Walworth hung a greater anxiety - the mystery of three young girls missing from their homes - a mystery that was to draw closer and closer to the Adams and Brown families, and finally culminate - along with Will's personal problems - on the night of the wedding.

Missing Person

Missing Person

Author: Mary Jane Staples Format: Paperback Release Date: 02/11/2010

The house in Caulfield Place, off Browning Street in Walworth, was haunted, or at least that's what the street kids said. So when two men, a woman, and a parrot moved in, everyone was very interested, especially fourteen-year-old Cassie Ford, who was particularly fascinated by the parrot. And it was just about this time that Mr Finch, Chinese Lady's husband, and Boots's stepfather, began to get mysterious telephone calls. Mr Finch had never told the rest of the Adams family - except for Boots - the secrets of his past, or what kind of work he did for the government, and he decided not to tell them about the slightly sinister telephone calls either. It was when he took Chinese Lady on a summer's day jaunt in his Morris motorcar that things began to happen. For, in the Hog's Back Hotel, Chinese Lady went to the cloakroom, and when she came back Mr Finch had vanished. It took all of Boots's ingenuity to discover what had happened, and Cassie's knowledge of the Caulfield Place parrot was to prove a vital clue in unravelling the mystery.

Churchill's People An Adams Family Saga Novel

Churchill's People An Adams Family Saga Novel

Author: Mary Jane Staples Format: Paperback Release Date: 02/11/2010

In 1941, the United Kingdom was in desperate straits, standing alone with its troops against the colossal war machine of Nazi Germany. There was always Prime Minister Winston Churchill, however, who growled his defiance to Hitler and induced in his people a determination to endure. The Adams family shared that determination and their own kind of optimism. Emma went happily into her marriage with Jonathan, while Boots's son Tim, in between his hazardous exploits as a Commando, helped his fiancee Felicity in her courageous fight against blindness, the result of a terrible injury in the bombing. Rosie Adams was due to marry Matthew Chapman from Dorset, but Chinese Lady was unsure about it. He seemed a fine enough man, but what with a lame leg that prevented him from doing his bit for his country, and the uncertainty of his garage business, she felt that he was hardly the ideal choice for such an eligible young woman as Rosie. As for Boots and his new wife Polly, they came up with some very unexpected news for the family...

Natasha's Dream

Natasha's Dream

Author: Mary Jane Staples Format: Paperback Release Date: 15/07/2010

1925, a damp wintry night in Berlin. Englishman Philip Gibson, in Germany to seek the answers to a tantalising mystery surrounding the Grand Duchess Anastasia, witnesses an attack on Natasha, a young woman who has fled from Russia. When Philip takes the fragile, lonely Natasha in to help her recuperate, she quickly falls for his kind and caring nature. But when further threats are made on her life, Philip finds himself at the heart of another mystery. What is it that links Natasha to this mysterious, damaged woman? And will her love for Philip survive the secrets that will be unearthed?

Escape To London

Escape To London

Author: Mary Jane Staples Format: Paperback Release Date: 30/06/2010

Austria, 1938. Anne von Korvacs watches in horror as Hitler's tanks roll through the streets of Vienna, amid crowds of cheering supporters. Her embittered ex-husband, now a fervent member of the Nazi cause, is among the cavalcade - he is burning with hatred for Anne, seeing her as a symbol of the old Austrian empire he once served. A chance encounter with a British journalist leaves Anne with a secret that must be smuggled out of the country, and Anne knows that she must forsake her beloved Vienna and with her children flee to Britain. In a thrilling journey that will separate sisters and brothers, parents and children, Anne and her family escape to freedom, to dream of a reunion in far-away London. Mary Jane Staples introduces a cast of gloriously warm characters in this wartime romantic adventure.

Ghost Of Whitechapel

Ghost Of Whitechapel

Author: Mary Jane Staples Format: Paperback Release Date: 08/12/2009

When fiery Bridget Cummings advertised for a lodger, she did not expect a policeman to apply for the room. She wasn't fond of the coppers, believing them to be traitors to the poor of Whitechapel, but her younger brother and sister moved P.C.Fred Billings in the moment Bridget's back was turned, and she seemed to have little say in the matter. Still, she had to admit that she was glad of his company in the walk back from her late-night washing up job, particularly when a young girl was found in a nearby street with her throat cut. The discovery of the body of Maureen Flanagan, who was, the neighbours believed, a respectable woman, naturally stirred memories of Jack the Ripper. His horrific crimes had shocked the neighbourhood only twelve years before., but Chief Inspector Dobbs of the City of London Police believed, like most other police officers, that the Ripper was dead. But when a second body was discovered, and Bridget noticed a strange man following her, the neighbourhood was alert to the possibility that the terror had returned...

The Homecoming

The Homecoming

Author: Mary Jane Staples Format: Paperback Release Date: 08/12/2009

It is 1946, and with the war at last at an end, members of the Adams family who had been serving with the forces begin to come home. Boots is reunited with Polly and their twins, his son Tim returns to the welcoming arms of Felicity, and with so many others coming back, Chinese Lady finds herself once more the watchful matriarch of the family. But grandson Daniel is still serving in an army unit out in Palestine, where he is caught up in life-threatening circumstances, and his American fiancee, Patsy, counts the days until his return. Boots, Polly and Mr Finch attend the Nuremberg trials, where they discover the full horrors of the Third Reich and witness Germany's major war criminals being brought to justice. And while the new Labour government struggles with the problems of a country drained by the war, Sammy pursues his business interests with post-war energy and unfailing optimism.

The Longest Winter

The Longest Winter

Author: Mary Jane Staples Format: Hardback Release Date: 04/12/2009

When Baroness Sophie von Korvacs meets British painter James Fraser one hot summer's day in Vienna, the attraction is instant. A whirlwind romance follows, with Vienna bathed in the brilliance of the last days of the emperor. And when James proposes to Sophie it seems a fitting end to that wonderful, enchanting summer. But darker days are on the horizon as Europe teeters on the brink of war. James must make the ultimate choice: love for King and Country or love for Sophie. Before he knows it, his difficult decision is made for him, and he and Sophie are on opposite sides of a bloody and devastating conflict. Four bleak years of fighting and death roll by. Will Sophie's long winter ever end and can their love conquer all?

The Longest Winter

The Longest Winter

Author: Mary Jane Staples Format: Paperback Release Date: 03/12/2009

When Baroness Sophie von Korvacs meets British painter James Fraser one hot summer's day in Vienna, the attraction is instant. A whirlwind romance follows, with Vienna bathed in the brilliance of the last days of the emperor. And when James proposes to Sophie it seems a fitting end to that wonderful, enchanting summer. But darker days are on the horizon as Europe teeters on the brink of war. James must make the ultimate choice: love for King and Country or love for Sophie. Before he knows it, his difficult decision is made for him, and he and Sophie are on opposite sides of a bloody and devastating conflict. Four bleak years of fighting and death roll by. Will Sophie's long winter ever end and can their love conquer all?

The Summer Day is Done

The Summer Day is Done

Author: Mary Jane Staples Format: Paperback Release Date: 16/07/2009

When young British agent John Kirby comes to Russia in 1911 he is there to work and to explore a new and exciting country. He does not expect to fall in love, but an invitation to a ball from the Tsar changes all that and, after an evening of dancing and romance, John and the Tsar's eldest daughter, Olga, are totally captivated by one another. Soon John is spending more time with Olga and her family, wonderful, long peaceful summers of tennis parties and picnics. But just as love begins to blossom between the pair, a cruel blow is dealt, John is forced to return to England and Olga and her family are caught up in the bitter and bloody war of 1914. Will John and Olga ever be reunited? Can their love survive the odds? Or will tragedy, pain and longing destroy them both?

Fire Over London A Novel of the Adams Family Saga

Fire Over London A Novel of the Adams Family Saga

Author: Mary Jane Staples Format: Paperback Release Date: 13/04/2009

The war is only into its second year, but already it has claimed one victim from the Adams family. Emily, Boots's cherished wife, has died in an air-raid,and the whole family mourns her. But for Polly Simms the prospect of a new life dawns, while the members of the younger generation who are in uniform, and doing their bit for King and Country, have their own problems to contend with. Tim has been posted to Scotland, to train as a Commando, and has met the lovely young officer Felicity; Eloise, now a sergeant in the ATS, is enjoying her new job as driver to the formidable Major Lucas. And has Rosie, now commissioned, lost her heart at last? The Blitz all but destroys the factory in Shoreditch, but Sammy and Tommy Adams manage to find some alternative accommodation. And love is in the air - for young and old alike - as the Adams family refuse to let Hitler get the better of them.

Katerina's Secret

Katerina's Secret

Author: Mary Jane Staples Format: Paperback Release Date: 04/12/2008

Charming, handsome Edward Somers has been recovering from his wartime injuries in a small hotel in the South of France where he is an extremely popular guest. One day, he happens upon a nearby villa, within which lives a mysterious and beautiful countess, Katerina, who does not appear to be allowed any visitors. Edward manages to break through to her and soon the pair develop a wonderful friendship. As each day passes the pair grow closer and closer but Edward soon finds there is more to Katerina than meets the eye. Why is she confined to the villa, guarded by a man with a rifle? Who is observing her with a telescope? Why is she so reluctant to be photographed? Soon a sinister chain of events begins to unfold, and several attempts on Katerina's life are made. Must Katerina always be on the run? Constantly forced into hiding, will she ever find the love she craves so dearly?

The Price Of Freedom

The Price Of Freedom

Author: Mary Jane Staples Format: Paperback Release Date: 27/08/2007

South London in the 1930s ...and Mrs Hilda Jones is fed up with her dull husband. She thought marrying would liven him up, but after twenty-five years he's just as boring as the day she married him , and now she wants to lead her own life. Her newly-married daughter, Olive, is shocked, but Hilda is adamant. Meanwhile, a heavy East End gang has moved into the area from Shoreditch, and has established a lucrative protection racket, bringing drama and anxiety to this closely-knit neighbourhood.

The Soldier's Girl

The Soldier's Girl

Author: Mary Jane Staples Format: Paperback Release Date: 28/08/2006

Young Maisie Gibbs is a conscientious young woman, though life is harder since both her parents passed away. She is relieved when she finds a position as a housemaid in Kensington, under the watchful eyes of the formidable housekeeper, Mrs Carpenter, and she quickly settles in. When she meets a handsome young soldier, she is tempted to give him his marching orders. But gradually Corporal Daniel Adams starts to win her over. When tragedy strikes the Fairfax household, Maisie is lucky she has Daniel to rely on - a good sign of things to come? A delight for fans of the Adams family - the heartwarming story of Daniel and Chinese Lady.

Family Fortunes An Adams Family Saga Novel

Family Fortunes An Adams Family Saga Novel

Author: Mary Jane Staples Format: Paperback Release Date: 01/01/2004

The 1950s are in full swing, and the Adams family is blessed with many new additions. Chinese Lady now has so many grandchildren that even she can sometimes scarcely remember them all. Boots and Sammy are kept up-to-date by the Adams youngsters , some of whom are now working in the family business. But they also welcome newcomers , including the lovely Anneliese, whose German ancestry makes her less than popular with some of her South London neighbours, and Joe and Hortense , newly arrived from the West Indies and working hard for Matt and Rosie on their farm in Kent. Sammy, meanwhile, has trouble with the newly-formed trade union at his factory, and the shadows of the war continue to haunt the family when Felicity's hopes for an operation which will save her sight are threatened by an extraordinary revelation. But the Adams family is still full of hope and promise for the future.

Spreading Wings A Novel of the Adams Family Saga

Spreading Wings A Novel of the Adams Family Saga

Author: Mary Jane Staples Format: Paperback Release Date: 15/09/2003

Sammy Adams is always on the look-out for a new business opportunity. When he hears from his son David about the new-fangled supermarkets that are becoming all the rage in America, he immediately starts looking for a suitable site in South London. Meanwhile, legacies of the last war continue to haunt the Adams family. The mystery of Katje Galicia, the Polish woman who knows something of Sir Edwin Finch's past, becomes a major police enquiry while a beautiful German girl appears, bringing wartime memories back to Tim Adams and his wife Felicity. Tim and Felicity have much to rejoice over, while the younger members of the Adams family are starting to spread their wings.

Changing Times

Changing Times

Author: Mary Jane Staples Format: Paperback Release Date: 01/01/2003

It is 1953 - Coronation year - and like all of Cockney London the members of the Adams family are looking forward to the celebrations. Chinese Lady, now Lady Finch, worries that her friends will think she is too grand to mingle with them . But her husband has a more pressing worry - the sudden appearance of the lovely but mysterious Katje Galicia, who knows more than she should about his own chequered past. Young Jimmy Adams, meanwhile, is enjoying working at the family clothing factory, where at the retirement party for two of the oldest employees, Bert and Gertie Roper, he meets their lively granddaughter Clare. Before long he has offered her a job on the switchboard, and has hopes of seeing her after working hours as well. And brave Felicity, blinded in the blitz, thinks she notices a glimmer of light appearing in her dark world - but dare not tell her husband, in case it is just her imagination... With the young Queen now on the throne, times are changing for the Adams family.

Appointment At The Palace An Adams Family Saga Novel

Appointment At The Palace An Adams Family Saga Novel

Author: Mary Jane Staples Format: Paperback Release Date: 01/09/2002

Excitement is running high in the Adams family. Mr Finch, after a long career in secret government work, is to be knighted - which means that Chinese Lady will become a real 'Lady'! What with having to find a new outfit suitable for the occasion, and worrying about whether she'll have to curtsey to the King, the redoubtable matriarch of the Adams family scarcely knows if she's coming or going. Her grandson Paul, meanwhile, working for the Young Socialists, is worried at what his fiery colleague Lucy will say if she learns that he has titled connections. And Sammy, trying to rebuild his clothing business after the War, is horrified at the growing fashion for denim jeans, which even the young ladies of the family seem to be wearing. Should he forsake his beliefs that girls should dress like girls and start stocking these objectionable garments? All differences are resolved, as the great day dawns when the Adams family goes to the Palace for their proudest moment.

Tomorrow Is Another Day An Adams Family Saga Novel

Tomorrow Is Another Day An Adams Family Saga Novel

Author: Mary Jane Staples Format: Paperback Release Date: 01/01/2000

From autumn 1941 to the first months of 1942, the war continued to affect the lives of the Adams and Somers families. It was not so much the war, however, as a succession of tragic domestic events that brought a sad and lonely little girl called Phoebe into the care of Susie and Sammy Adams, reminding them of the entry of Rosie as a child into the lives of Boots and Emily. Much needed to be done to cure little Phoebe of her sadness, and it proved a difficult time for Susie and Sammy. Further shadows fell when news came that Tim was a prisoner of war, and that Japan had attacked the American fleet in Pearl Harbour and British bases in the Far East. But Boots's French-born daughter Eloise had her dearest wish come true when she married Colonel Lucas of the Commandos in Alexandria.

Bright Day, Dark Night A Novel of the Adams Family Saga

Bright Day, Dark Night A Novel of the Adams Family Saga

Author: Mary Jane Staples Format: Paperback Release Date: 01/09/1999

It is summer, 1941, and the country is still at war. In the Devon village of Ashleigh, however, evacuees from the London blitz are living in an atmosphere of rural peacefulness, although Daisy Ricketts of Bermondsey isn't sure if she'll ever get on with carping Mrs Mumford, the subject of whispers because of her husband's mysterious disappearance. David, the elder son of Tommy and Vi Adams, meets Kate Trimble, a cockney girl from Camberwell who has just arrived in Ashleigh with her aunt. Kate is imaginative and precocious, while David is happy-go-lucky , and as the war is directly affecting the lives of so many other members of the Adams family, Kate and David establish a friendship in the summer sunshine of Devon. But as their friendship develops some exciting undercurrents, an incident occurs which brings home to them the darker intrigues of wartime and provides a devastating shock to everyone.

The Family At War An Adams Family Saga Novel

The Family At War An Adams Family Saga Novel

Author: Mary Jane Staples Format: Paperback Release Date: 01/01/1998

It was 1940, and many of the younger members of the Adams family were caught up in the war in France. Boots, now a Major and on the staff of General Sir Henry Simms, was one of the thousands of British troops trying to escape in the armada of little boats from Dunkirk. His son Tim and nephew Bobby were also struggling to reach the coast and safety, while Eloise was with the ATS awaiting the homecoming soldiers at Portsmouth with a comforting cup of tea and a ticket home. Boots and Tim both made it safely back, but of Bobby there was no sign, and the family all feared the worst. In a farm some miles from Dunkirk, however, Bobby was alive but injured, and trapped by the advancing Germans. The farmer and his wife offered him refuge but Helene, the farmer's independent-minded daughter, was scathing about the retreating British army and gave the brave, joking young sergeant a hard time. Working in the fields, dodging the German soldiers, Bobby was desperately looking for a way to escape and Helene, despite her hostility, found herself increasingly anxious to help the Englishman to get back home. Their adventures were to thrill the Adams family when they came to hear about it.

The Last Summer

The Last Summer

Author: Mary Jane Staples Format: Paperback Release Date: 01/01/1997

Job and Jemima Hardy weren't Londoners by birth. They had both lived in a Sussex village until lack of work had sent Job and the family to Walworth - to a house in Stead Street. They got it cheap because of the poltergiest but they were sensible folk and decided that eight shillings a week rent was a bargain and - well - if the floors and doors sometimes moved a bit, they could live with it. They settled quickly into London life - particularly Jonathan, the eldest. Jonathan got a job at Camberwell Green and it was there, in Lyons teashop, that he met Emma Somers, niece of Boots Adams. Over a long and hazy summer - the summer of 1939 - the two young people met, always at lunchtime, and never allowing their friendship to progress too far. Then, as the clouds of war gathered over Europe, Jonathan got his call-up papers. And the first alarms of conflict began to affect the Adams family in other ways. Boots, on the Officer's Reserve list, was called onto the staff of General Sir Henry Sims, and Polly Sims herself joined the Auxiliaries. Suddenly there was only a little time left for people to lead ordinary lives - and Jonathan Hardy and Emma Somers had to make decisions about their future.

The Young Ones

The Young Ones

Author: Mary Jane Staples Format: Paperback Release Date: 01/01/1996

Once they had been called Orrice and Effel, two bedraggled, scruffy waifs who lived rough off the streets of Walworth. Now they were Horrace and Ethel Cooper, grown up - quite respectable really - and living with their adopted parents, Jim and Rebecca Cooper. When Horrace saw the pretty girl who worked as a shop assistant in Adams (Ladies Fashion Modes) he was quite bowled over and knew he had to meet her. From then on he was in and out of the shop, buying hats and stockings and ribbons, trying desperately to persuade Miss Sally Brown to come out with him. And while he was laying siege to Sally, his sister Ethel was listening to her poet boyfriend spouting forth his romantic verse. But Ethel's involvement with the poet was to end more dangerously and dramatically than either she or Horrace had imagined and several quite startling events were to happen before Horrace and Ethel's affairs were resolved.

Echoes Of Yesterday A Novel of the Adams Family Saga

Echoes Of Yesterday A Novel of the Adams Family Saga

Author: Mary Jane Staples Format: Paperback Release Date: 01/10/1995

It was June 1916 when Sergeant Boots Adams of the Royal West Kents, together with his men, was billeted on the Descartes farm in Northern France. It was a short break from the turmoil and horror of the trenches, and Boots and his men, in return for their free billeting, were to help the farmer in his fields. It came as something of a surprise to discover that the land was being managed by a young French war widow, Cecile Lacoste and, to the distant sound of guns, a brief wartime friendship flared between Boots and Cecile. The friendship was cut brutally short when, once more, the West Kents were called back to the trenches and Boots suffered an injury that was to take him home to London, to Sammy and Chinese Lady, and all the valiant cockney friends of Walworth who were to help him through the darkest period of his life. It was to be many years before Boots' friend, Miss Polly Simms, visiting the old battle haunts of France, stumbled once more upon the Descartes farm, and the memories of the past were rekindled.

Pride Of Walworth

Pride Of Walworth

Author: Mary Jane Staples Format: Paperback Release Date: 01/01/1995

There was a new family in Browning Street, Walworth - the Harrisons. Respectable and well-behaved, the only thing unusual about them was that Mr Harrison was never there. He was a sailor, said Ma Harrison, away fighting pirates in the China Seas. Actually, 'Knocker' Harrison was in Marsham Gaol - he had unfortunately burgled a lady's suite when she happened to be there. Pa wasn't really a very good burglar. When young Nick Harrison, eldest son and heir of Ma and Knocker, met Annabelle Somers he found himself in a very difficult situation. For seventeen-year-old Annabelle was a peach of a girl, was related to the highly respectable Adams family, and was really quite keen on Nick, very interested in him and in his family. What with keeping Annabelle at arm's length in case she found out about Pa, and with the problems of running the Browning Street Rovers football team (the ball was owned by Chrissie Evans who laid down her own rules about the team) Nick sometimes wondered if his life would ever be sorted out.

A Family Affair

A Family Affair

Author: Mary Jane Staples Format: Paperback Release Date: 01/01/1994

1926 was the year of the General Strike, but Adams Enterprises, under the wily management of Sammy Adams, youngest entrepreneur in Walworth and Lambeth, was doing very well. All the Adams brothers worked in the business, and so did two of the wives, Emily and Susie. There was just one dark cloud on the horizon - the impending trial of Gerald Ponsonby. Boots had been the one responsible for catching the murderer, and Ponsonby hated Boots and, indeed, the entire Adams family. He was determined to get his revenge and make them suffer. When a dapper, quiet, but rather odd lodger turned up at Doreen Paterson's house, nobody thought anything was amiss. It never occurred to Doreen - who worked for Boots in Adams Enterprises and thought him just wonderful - that the strange lodger might be plotting the downfall of the irrepressible, outrageous, and larger-than-life Adams clan.

The Trap

The Trap

Author: Mary Jane Staples Format: Paperback Release Date: 01/09/1993

When Jamie Blair, twenty-four, unemployed, and back from the trenches, took lodgings at Larcom Street in Walworth, he had no idea he was walking into a trap. The house was owned by Henry Mullins, big, burly, and a hard drinker. Henry made life hell for his four stepchildren who looked half-starved and frequently got bashed. Seventeen-year-old Kitty was the one Jamie felt most sorry for. She took the brunt of Henry Mullins' bad temper whilst trying to protect her sisters and brother. When Mullins suddenly died - in somewhat suspicious circumstances - Kitty realised they could be in trouble. If she wasn't careful the authorities would take the younger children away - split the family up. She wasn't having that, not after all they'd gone through, and nice, kind Jamie Blair was the one to save them. Too late Jamie found himself with a ready-made family and a stubborn and fiery young termagant called Kitty who was determined not to let him go.

Sergeant Joe

Sergeant Joe

Author: Mary Jane Staples Format: Paperback Release Date: 01/10/1992

Everyone liked Sergeant Joe. From the huge jolly Beavis family with whom he had lodgings in Newington Butts, to Mr George Singleton, Charing Cross Road bookseller, who employed Joe in a little lucrative and harmless forgery, Sergeant Joe was a univeral favourite. Quite a few people wondered why he didn't get married. But it wasn't until he bumped into Dolly Smith - quite literally in a London pea-souper - that he met a girl who made an impression on him. Dolly was quick, lively, and full of cockney cheek. She was also a little frightened - running from a vicious-looking thug and a sinister foreigner who seemed to think she had stolen something valuable. When Joe took Dolly under his wing he thought he was just helping her in a momentary predicament. He didn't realise his peaceful existence was going to be wrecked. For Dolly was both bewitching and beguiling - and she was also involved in something quite dangerous that was finally to give Sergeant Joe the surprise of his life.

The Pearly Queen

The Pearly Queen

Author: Mary Jane Staples Format: Paperback Release Date: 01/01/1992

The Pearly Queen was really Aunt Edie. She was thirty-nine, had a good job in a factory, lived in a flat off Camberwell Green, and had never married. Her fiance had drowned in the Thames when she was a girl and since then she had been on her own, though not from choice. Everyone loved Aunt Edie - but especially the Andrews family. Jack Andrews was having a tough time. He'd come back from the First World War to find his wife had 'got religion'.She'd got it so badly that she finally went off, left Jim and the three children and joined Father Peter's League of Repenters. She never really came home again. Jack and the children managed as best they could, but things were pretty tough when Aunt Edie turned up. The first thing she did was give her cousin, Maud Andrews, a piece of her mind for running off and leaving her family. But when that didn't do any good, Edie moved in and took over the Andrews family. For the first time in years life began to look good again. Aunt Edie was warm, generous, kind, and, above all, she was their very own Pearly Queen.

Rising Summer

Rising Summer

Author: Mary Jane Staples Format: Paperback Release Date: 01/09/1991

Tim Parkes was three when his parents were killed in a train crash and he went to live with his Aunt May, first in New Cross, and then to Walworth where the living was cheaper. They managed splendidly - and then came the war. Tim Parkes became Gunner Parkes and Aunt May spent most of her nights in the Walworth air raid shelters with Tim keeping an eye on her whenever he was able. When he got posted to Suffolk he wasn't too pleased - Suffolk was Country, not like London at all. But in fact there were a lot of things about Sheldham that reminded him of home - the Walworth evacuees for a start. Those of them that weren't creating havoc in the Suffolk village were creating havoc in Tim's life. Minnie Beavers - ex-Camberwell - was fifteen, pert, pretty, and wildly in love with Tim. She was determined to inveigle him into marriage the minute she was old enough. Tim was equally determined to escape and choose his own girl. By the time Tim had gone away to fight the war, and Minnie had joined the WAAF, a great many things had changed in both their lives.

The Lodger

The Lodger

Author: Mary Jane Staples Format: Paperback Release Date: 01/03/1991

Maggie Wilson was only thirty-three, but life in the teeming streets of Walworth was not that easy in 1908 - not if you were a widow with four young daughters. It was pretty much a hand-to-mouth existence and without the lodger Maggie really wouldn't have managed at all. Constable Harry Bradshaw thought the Wilsons were a gutsy and brave little family - from the youngest and cheekiest, Daisy, up to the elegant Trary, thirteen-years-old and quite the young lady. But the one who won most of his admiration was Maggie herself, fighting her lonely battle against total poverty. And his fears for her concerned more than just their lack of money. For a murderer was loose in South London - a rather sinister strangler who obviously knew the local streets and alleys very well indeed. A full scale investigation was put in hand, and Harry was told, in particular, to inquire into any new lodgers who had moved into the district. And there was something very peculiar indeed about Maggie Wilson's lodger.

Two For Three Farthings

Two For Three Farthings

Author: Mary Jane Staples Format: Paperback Release Date: 01/08/1990

Horace was ten, Ethel seven, when Jim Cooper, home from the trenches, minus an arm and just about managing on his own, found them huddled in a doorway on a wet night in Walworth. Slightly against his better judgement he took them in, fed them cocoa, and put them to sleep in his bed. A few days later he found that - somehow - he had become the unofficial guardian of Horace and Ethel. It was him, the orphanage, or separation for the gutsy little pair who would have to be farmed out to anyone who would take them, and Jim felt a sudden affinity for the two cheeky cockney kids. The first thing he had to do was find fresh lodgings for them all. Miss Rebecca Pilgrim was a woman of strict Victorian principles, eminently respectable, and determined to keep her privacy intact. She had reckoned without her new lodgers - Horace, Ethel and, above all, the irrepressible Jim Cooper. And thus began the humanizing of Miss Pilgrim, who turned out to be younger, prettier, and far gentler than any of them had suspected.

King Of Camberwell A Novel of the Adams Family Saga

King Of Camberwell A Novel of the Adams Family Saga

Author: Mary Jane Staples Format: Paperback Release Date: 01/02/1990

Sammy was the sharp one of the Adams family.Since he was nine-years-old - when he'd charged his mother interest on a loan to make up the rent money - he'd been busy setting up deals and expanding the family business - a china stall in East Street market. But as his mighty empire grew - two shops and a factory in Shoreditch - so did the determination of his assistant, Susie Brown. Susie adored Sammy - although she thought he needed a bit of work done on him, a few rough spots knocked off - and she had decided, quite early on, that Sammy was going to marry her.But Sammy, rapidly becoming the King of Camberwell, and dreading that marriage was going to cost him money, decided to put up a fight.It was a battle he hadn't a hope of winning - especially when all the rest of the Adams family were on Susie's side. Here again are all the magnificent characters from Down Lambeth Way and Our Emily - Chinese Lady, keeping her family in order and contemplating matrimony for the second time.Emily and Boots, facing a serious rift in their marriage - a rift not helped by the hovering Polly Sims.Tommy, daring to woo Cousin Vi when he 'wasn't quite good enough for her', and Sammy, pulling his wonderful Walworth family into the good times at last.

Our Emily Adams Family Saga

Our Emily Adams Family Saga

Author: Mary Jane Staples Format: Paperback Release Date: 17/02/1989

Emily had been a quite horrible child. Pushy, rough, and none too clean (for it must have been Emily who passed on her head-lice to the Adams family), she had been the bane of Mrs Adams and her children who lived next door, and especially she had been a trial to Boots, who had avoided her whenever he could. But Emily grown-up was a different matter.She was still a cockney girl, but now she had a certain elegance, a style.The fighting toughness was still there - and she needed it.For Boots, back from the trenches, was blind, and Emily was to prove the mainstay, the breadwinner, and the love of his life. Here again is the Adams family from Down Lambeth Way - Chinese Lady determined more than ever to be respectable, Tommy facing unemployment, and Sammy well on the way to becoming a street market tycoon.And above all here is Our Emily.

Down Lambeth Way

Down Lambeth Way

Author: Mary Jane Staples Format: Paperback Release Date: 15/07/1988

The Adams family of Walworth were poor, cheerful, and above all respectable - even though they sometimes had to seek a little help from the pawnbroker. Mrs Adams - affectionately called Chinese Lady by her children - was a widow, her soldier husband having gone, rather carelessly, to a hero's death on the Northwest Frontier. There was Boots, the bright one, and Tommy, the quiet one, and Sammy, the nine-year-old wheeler-dealer of the family. There was Mr Finch, the lodger, and dreadful Em'ly next door, and genteel Miss Chivers with the terrible old mother, but above all there was Lizzy. Lizzy was one of the prettiest girls in Walworth. She was young, and always sounded her aitches, and she cared terribly about being clean and neat and...proper. Lizzy was a peach of a girl. When Lizzy fell in love it was 1914. Everyone was going to be affected, things were going to change. But whatever happened, the Adams family - gutsy, tough and cheeky - would come through.

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