Peggy Bowden has not had an easy life. As a teenager her mother was committed to an asylum and then a local priest forced her into an abusive marriage. But when her husband dies in an accident Peggy sees an opportunity to start again and trains as a midwife.
In 1950s Dublin it is not easy for a woman to make a living and Peggy sees a chance to start a business and soon a lucrative maternity home is up and running. But when Peggy realizes that the lack of birth control is an issue for women, she uses their plight as a way to make more money. Very soon Peggy is on the wrong side of the law.
What makes a woman decide to walk down a dark path? Can Peggy ever get back on the straight and narrow? Or will she have to pay for her crimes?
Set against the backdrop of Ireland in the 1950’s The Abandoned tells the story of one woman’s fight for survival and her journey into the underbelly of a dangerous criminal world.
Many thanks to the author Sarah Thompson, publisher Bloodhound Books and blog tour organiser Sarah Hardy for the ARC of The Abandoned in return for an honest review.
When it comes down to it, we all read because we love a great story! We want to be entertained, amused, thrilled and distracted from the world around us. Asking the writer to take us on a journey into a saga far removed from the chores and stresses of everyday life.
Sarah Thompson does that and immersed me in the often violent and male dominated world of 1950’s Dublin. She also gave me a heroine, who though not your typical honest and decent female protagonist, is gutsy, a survivor and ruthless. Yet she has a softer side to her that keeps you immersed in her story, needing to know as the blurb says, can she survive the violence that surrounds her.
The book is full of atmosphere and period detail. You can almost feel the often brutal and hostile world that surrounds Peggy seeping of the pages into your subconscious. Ireland in the 1950’s was not a city that celebrated strong independent women. Crime, religion and free-thinking were the domain of men. Peggy as a character is so addictive, because she refuses to conform to the stereotypical role of women in that period and as modern women you can’t help but feel a certain affinity with her. You may not approve of the ways she seeks out a role for herself, but you can’t help but be fascinated by her and the world she lives in. Peggy is living in a world determined to pigeonhole her, but at the same time refuses to allow her to carve out a fulfilling role. Therefore Peggy is left with little choice but to take the few chances open to her.
The Abandoned is a fabulous historical thriller and though I disproved of Peggy’s actions, I thoroughly enjoyed her story. I loved the setting and the way the writer carved out her life in a way that reflected the period she lived in.
I’m looking forward to more from Sharon Thompson.
The Abandoned can be purchased from Amazon
Sharon Thompson author.