The Very White of Love

by S. C. Worrall

Relationship Stories Historical fiction Family Drama Debut Books of the Month Debuts eBooks of the Month Books of the Month

LoveReading Expert Review of The Very White of Love

Touchingly intimate, yet scorchingly dramatic... whatever you do, do not allow the final few pages to fall open before you reach them.

A touchingly intimate yet scorchingly dramatic and fully realised view of a couple who meet just before the Second World War. This is a relationship tale that took hold of me, brought me to its very centre and allowed me access to innermost thoughts and feelings. Martin and Nancy fall in love, as Martin departs for the battlefields of France, they continue to communicate by letter, until suddenly Martin’s letters stop. My advice to you is to pick this book up, start to read, and whatever you do, do not allow the final few pages to fall open before you reach them. For me the ending was a heart-stopping moment, and is still very much in my mind, the emotion of the realisation continues to affect me. The letters are exquisitely crafted, with real heart, tying into the story perfectly and bringing a sense of nostalgia for this type of communication. S. C. Worrall allows the war to edge ever closer, until it strikes with a sharp hammer blow. The Very White of Love takes you step by step into another time, heartfelt and beautiful I can wholeheartedly recommend this read. 

Liz Robinson

The Very White of Love Synopsis

Torn apart by war, their letters meant everything... `My love. I am writing to you without knowing where you are but I will find you after all these long months...' 3rd September 1938. Martin Preston is in his second year of Oxford when his world is split in two by a beautiful redhead, Nancy Whelan. A whirlwind romance blossoms in the Buckinghamshire countryside as dark clouds begin to gather in Europe. 3rd September 1939. Britain declares war on Germany. Martin is sent to the battlefields of France, but as their letters cross the channel, he tells Nancy their love will keep him safe. Then, one day, his letters stop. 3rd September 1940. It's four months since Nancy last heard from Martin. She knows he is still alive. And she'll do anything to find him. But what she discovers will change her life forever...

About This Edition

ISBN: 9780008217501
Publication date: 13th December 2018
Author: S. C. Worrall
Publisher: HQ an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers
Format: Paperback
Primary Genre Historical fiction
Other Genres:

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The Very White of Love Reader Reviews

In addition to our Lovereading expert opinion some of our Reader Review Panel were also lucky enough to read and review this title.

A beautiful story of wartime romance between Nancy and Martin, corresponding by letter through World War 2. I loved the detail of description in the localities that Martin finds himself in throughout his wartime duties in France. From bullocks in the muddy fields to the local bistros that the officers dine in just metres from the front line. A really interesting look at the hopes and dreams of two young people who fell in love and have true faith that their love will not be for nothing, that they will have a future despite the situation they find themselves in, no matter what. There is a real purity to this love story. I loved this book.

When a parent dies their children sometimes find out much about their parent's life that they had never known. This story is a beautifully written, poignant outline of the life of Nancy, the author's mother and the life she led as a young girl, who fell in love with Martin, a second year Oxford undergraduate, just before the start of the second World War. Their gentle romance and English country lives are wonderfully portrayed. There is great reverence paid to the natural beauty of their innocence and the flora and fauna that surrounds them. Once war is declared and Martin and Nancy are separated, their romance continues through the form of letters which allow us into their innermost thoughts, sharing their hopes and fears as well as an fascinating commentary of the mechanics of life on the battlefield, the pride and sense of duty that meant so much to these brave men. This is a truly remarkable story that I wanted to read all over again as soon as I had finished it. Beautifully written. Touching and insightful.

Julie Bertschin

Debut novel, true story, love letters from the war and a quest to find out what happened after Nancy death. Beautifully written blew me away.

Wow this is some debut novel and blew me away. I was asked to review for LoveReading.

Mother has died and her son after a few weeks is going through a chocolate box filled with love letters all tied up with knots and one rainy day she unties the knots.

These love letters are during world war 2 - people did not know if they would survive the war, nothing was certain and love blossomed in difficult circumstances.

This was a beautiful book that I too sat on a bleak over cast day and like the son I untied the knots and turned the pages.

This is a true story this gets better and better - Martin Preston and Nancy Whelan who meet in Oxford in 1937 and fall in love, then the war looms and Martin enlists. They are engaged before he goes.

So many at that time relied on letters to keep their love alive and they never knew if their loved ones would return.

This is not just a series of letters but the quest for the son to find out what happened to Martin as the son knew of this man due to a photo Nancy kept next to pictures of his father and other family members.

This is so moving and the reader yearns to find out what happened till the very last page. The sad thing is the son finds out what his mother never knew.

This was such a great read with wonderful writing I just loved reading this

What a privilege to be asked to review this book

Will definitely be in the top ten this summer.

Jane Brown

A truly gorgeous love story that will steal your heart

Once every so often along comes a book which just grabs you and this is one of those books. A terrific love story superbly written and one that is difficult to put down once you commence reading it.

Spanning the Second World War years, the story gently unfolds the heart-felt love between two people during the ups and downs of life during this extremely difficult time for everyone. True romance between two people trying to deal with the difficulties they face each day.

Written in a romantic lovely style, this is a lovely story with a surprising ending. A book you will enjoy reading as I know I did.

Catherine Bryce

Other editions of this book

ISBN: 9780008217501
Publication date: 13/12/2018
Format: Paperback

ISBN: 9780008217495
Publication date: 14/06/2018
Format: Hardback

View All Editions

About S. C. Worrall

S. C. Worrall was born in Wellington, England and spent his childhood in Eritrea, Paris and Singapore. Since 1984, he has been a full-time, freelance journalist and book author. He has written for National Geographic, GQ, The London Times and The Guardian. He has also made frequent appearances on Radio & TV, including the BBC's From Our Own Correspondent; NPR and PBS. He speaks six languages and has lived in or visited more than 70 countries. The Very White of Love is his debut novel.

More About S. C. Worrall

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