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It is early in 1941, and June Marlowe, with no home and no family to turn to accepts the offer of a home from a frail stranger, older than his years. A series of events takes her to a house in the West Country and the blossoming of an English spring into which war only occasionally intrudes. Here she may find peace; here she will no longer be part of the furniture.
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The heroine of Mary Wesley's latest novel, Part of the Furniture, is 17- year-old Juno Marlowe, a girl possessed of both extraordinary innocence and remarkable courage. We first meet Juno during the World War II blitz of London; she is suffering the twin effects of rape and having to sleep next to a dead stranger during an air raid. Other novelists might have chosen to plumb these traumatic events for several chapters at least, but Wesley gives them no more time than she thinks they deserve and then moves quickly on to the heart of her story, which takes Juno far away to the western corner of England to deliver a letter from the dead man to his family. Here Juno meets the stranger's father, a man considerably older than herself, and finds her soulmate.
If there's such a thing as a steely-eyed romantic, Mary Wesley is one. On the one hand, she deals with death, rape, and other horrors with unsentimental straightforwardness and humor as black as a coal cellar; on the other, she is a firm believer in love's ability to heal even the deepest wounds. The pleasure of reading Part of the Furniture is observing this surprising marriage of love and pragmatism, as well as the unexpected twists and turns Wesley throws into her tale of loving during wartime.From the Publisher:
"A novel whose freshness of tone, energy of plotting and sweet nature make it exceptional by any standards"
-Eliza Charlton, Sunday Telegraph
"Few novelists offer such a rich concoction of amoral spice and cleverness; but to judge her work exlusively on this level is to miss more subtle rewards"
-Elizabeth Buchan, Mail on Sunday
"With its brilliant final twist, this is Mary Wesley's best yet"
-Katie Campbell, Evening Standard
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Book Description 1998. PAP. Condition: New. New Book. Shipped from US within 10 to 14 business days. Established seller since 2000. Seller Inventory # VP-9780140266283
Book Description Penguin Books. PAPERBACK. Condition: New. 0140266283 *BRAND NEW* Ships Same Day or Next!. Seller Inventory # SWATI2132207696
Book Description Penguin Books, United States, 1998. Paperback. Condition: New. Large type / large print edition. Language: English. Brand new Book. Seventeen-year-old Juno Marlowe - pretty, but diffident and awkward - is caught in a World War II air raid as she crosses London after seeing off to the front the two shallow young men she has worshiped like a puppy for years. Sheltered overnight by an ailing stranger, she is launched by his sudden death - and the letter he charges her to deliver to his father - into an unlooked-for but defiant journey. Finding herself embraced without question by his eccentric family, Juno begins to blossom under the watchful gaze of the estate's reclusive owner, Robert Copplestone. A once-charming, robust man who has been shattered by the loss of his wife and, now, the death of his son, Robert is immediately drawn to Juno's wounded but unflappable self. Gradually and almost against his will, he learns to love again and patiently waits for Juno to shed a childish love for those who did not love her back. In the blacked-out English countryside, an eccentric farm family and an idyllic spring transform Juno's slighted, wounded existence into strength and joy and, above all, a life as more than just a part of the furniture. Seller Inventory # BTE9780140266283
Book Description Penguin, 1998. Condition: New. Seller Inventory # TV9780140266283
Book Description Penguin Books, 1998. Paperback. Condition: New. Never used!. Seller Inventory # P110140266283
Book Description Penguin Books, 1998. Paperback. Condition: New. Seller Inventory # DADAX0140266283
Book Description Penguin Books. PAPERBACK. Condition: New. 0140266283 New Condition. Seller Inventory # NEW99.2241285
Book Description Condition: New. New. Seller Inventory # STRM-0140266283
Book Description Penguin Books, 1998. Paperback. Condition: New. Ships with Tracking Number! INTERNATIONAL WORLDWIDE Shipping available. Buy with confidence, excellent customer service!. Seller Inventory # 0140266283n