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Spilt Milk by Amanda Hodgkinson
  

Spilt Milk

Literary Fiction   Family Drama   Historical Fiction   eBook Favourites   
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The second novel from historical novelist Amanda Hodgkinson whose debut 22 Britannia Road garnered lots of praise and attention. Beginning in early 20th century Suffolk and moving through to the period after WW2, Spilt Milk is a compelling read about sisterhood, motherhood, and secrets across generations that cannot be laid to rest.

If you like Amanda Hodgkinson you might also like to read books by Sebastian Faulks, Stef Penney and Alison Pick.

Synopsis

Spilt Milk by Amanda Hodgkinson

1913. Unmarried sisters Nellie and Vivian Marsh live an impoverished existence in a tiny cottage on the banks of the Little River in Suffolk. Their life is quiet and predictable, until a sudden flood throws up a strange fish on their doorstep and a travelling man who will change them forever.

1939. Eighteen year old Birdie Farr is working as a barmaid in the family pub in London. When she realises she is pregnant she turns to her mother Nellie, who asks her sister to arrange an adoption for Birdie's new born daughter. But as the years pass Birdie discovers she cannot escape the Marsh sisters' shadowy past - and her own troubling obsession with finding her lost daughter will have deep consequences for all of them...

Reviews

Hogkinson's second novel is simply but elegantly written, its subtle charms emerging as her gentle, bittersweet story shows history repeating itself over the generations Sunday Times This is a story that explores motherhood and sisterhood with great subtlety and power ... with its strong storytelling, haunting characters and beautiful, supple prose, Hodgkinson's fiction deserves a wider audience Independent on Sunday Spilt Milk is a refracted version of real life, that impossible mess we inherit and muddle through, yet transmuted here into something shining and meaningful, told in beautiful prose Financial Times Explores love, betrayal and loyalty. Lyrically written and wonderfully convincing, this is a rich and memorable read Sunday Mirror A realisation of a rural life ... a quietly engrossing saga Daily Mail A potent, moving story of mother and sisterhood Sainsbury's Magazine A tale of sisterhood, lies and illegitimate babies Good Housekeeping A moving and lyrical story ... wise, perceptive, warm and heartbreaking, this is a story that lingers long in the mind Lancashire Evening Post


About the Author

I was born in the mid 1960s in Somerset to a wonderfully optimistic and very young, hippy couple who were both artists and dreamed of living the good life. My mother wove fabric to make our clothes. My father was a potter and made all our cups and bowls and plates. We didn’t have any money but we ate off pretty plates and my clothes were unusual to say the least.

When I five years old, we moved to a small fishing village in Essex and my memories of childhood are of shingle beaches and mudflats, grey-green heather colouring the wide salt marshes that surrounded the village, and the never ending call of seagulls.

We collected samphire off the marshes and dug for cockles at low tide. We gathered mussels and razor clams, winkles and oysters. My father bought a boat and took me with him on fishing trips.

I learnt about the tides’ ebb and flow and the moon’s effect on them. I laughed at tourists who parked their cars by the quay where the incoming tide always flooded the road waist high, the water finally receding at the boatyard where the locals parked their cars.

And then aged ten, I turned my back on the sea and fell in love with books. My parents opened a second hand book shop and our home filled up with cardboard boxes full of books. There were four of us children by then and my elder brother and I were left to care for our younger siblings while our parents ran the shop. My brother sat in his room playing guitar. My younger brother and sister watched TV for hours on end and I rummaged through cardboard boxes full of books and read and read and read. I think it was then that I decided I wanted to be a writer.
Many years later, with two children of my own and a long line of jobs under my belt, I finally decided to follow my dream. I took an MA in Creative Writing at the University of East Anglia and started to write seriously. After that, I followed another dream, this time my husband’s. We moved to south west France to live. I thought I would finally have the time to write my novel but we bought a wreck of a house and I spent the first few years of our new life mixing concrete. We also had to learn French, settle our daughters into French school and deal with the ups and downs of a new life miles away from friends and family.

Finally though, we did it. We all learned French and we did all settle in and make a real home here. And I finished the novel…

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Book Info

Publication date

6th February 2014

Author

Amanda Hodgkinson

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Author's Website

www.amandahodgkinson.com/

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Publisher

Penguin Books Ltd

Format

Paperback
304 pages

Categories

Literary Fiction
Family Drama
Historical Fiction
eBook Favourites

Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945)

ISBN

9781905490714

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