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It was a wartime white wedding but it was not a love match. Annie Cooper married George McCabe for one reason only: she was expecting his child. Her own parents accepted the situation with a kind of pained resignation. The easy-going McCabes, and especially George's rumbustious mother, just took it in their stride. But Annie was a girl of spirit and determined to make the marriage work. George might not be all that bright, but he was good-natured and a hard worker once given a shove in the right direction. Annie applied herself to that task as she matured into a woman of character and resource. The family prospered even as it grew. She bore George four children, but it was the first who always held her heart in the hollow of his hand. From early childhood, Rance was a problem. There were traits in his character that were hard to excuse or even understand, but whatever trouble he got into, Annie would forgive him. Mother and son were bound together by an invisible chord; invisible but strong enough to become a noose for both of them. Spanning a period of nearly thirty years and set against a background of the Tyneside towns, The Invisible Cord is a novel of great power and warmth that explores several different kinds of love with a strong dramatic narrative that wholly engages from first page to last.
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'Catherine Cookson's novels are about hardship, the intractability of life and of individuals, the struggle first to survive and next to make sense of one's survival. Humour, toughness, resolution and generosity are Cookson virtues, in a world which she often depicts as cold and violent. Her novels are weighted and driven by her own early experiences of illegitimacy and poverty. This is what gives them power. In the specialised world of women's popular fiction, Cookson has created her own territory' - Helen Dunmore, The TimesAbout the Author:
Catherine Cookson lived in Northumberland, England, the setting of many of her international bestsellers. Born in Tyne Dock, she was the illegitimate daughter of an impoverished woman, Kate, whom she was raised to believe was her older sister. She began to work in the civil service but eventually moved south to Hastings, where she met and married a local grammar school master.
Although she was originally acclaimed as a regional writer, in 1968 her novel "The Round Tower" won the Winifred Holtby Award, her readership quickly spread worldwide, and her many bestselling novels established her as one of the most popular contemporary authors. After receiving an OBE in 1985, Catherine Cookson was made a Dame of the British Empire in 1993. She died shortly before her ninety-second birthday, in June 1998, having completed 104 works.
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