Brought up on her parents' small- holding in Jarrow in the harsh years of the 1870s, Rose dreams of the world beyond the grime of the town, a world she glimpsed at a fairytale wedding on the Ravensworth Estate as a child. Capturing the heart of handsome and respectable steelworker William Fawcett, it seems her dreams will come true. But tragedy strikes, and to save her young family from destitution, Rose must turn to wild John McMullen, refusing to give into loss and despair. The Jarrow Lass is the first novel in the Jarrow Trilogy.
1906, The Ravensworth Arms, Lamesley, Gateshead.
Kate Fawcett, a barmaid, fell into the arms of a mysterious stranger and conceived an illegitimate child.
The child grew up to be Dame Catherine Cookson OBE.
Heavy with the shameful sin that a child out of wedlock would bring to her family, Kate agreed that her mother would bring Catherine up as her own. This book tells Rose's story.
The story is set in the 1870s on Tyneside. She is brought up in her parents smallholding in Jarrow but dreams of the world beyond the grime of the town, a world she glimpsed at a fairytale wedding on the Ravensworth Estate during a visit to her grandmother.
Marriage brings a beautiful home and a brood of daughters but heartache and poverty are just waiting around the corner.
Catherine McMullen, or Kitty as she is known, is seventeen, restless and rebellious. Resentful of her mother Kate's new husband, she yearns for stories of the father she never knew. Catherine is sure he must have been special as her mother risked everything for him. But when her gossipy aunt divulges that he was a wealthy gentleman, it only serves to heighten Catherine's discontent with Jarrow - the grimy, impoverished town she calls home.
Eager to catch a glimpse of the lifestyle that might have been hers, Catherine takes a position as a lady's companion in a grand house. But her illusions are shattered when she realises she has been employed as no more than a skivvy. She decides to try for a job as an officer in charge of the laundry at the notorious workhouse. There her young eyes are confronted with the horrors and indignities of poverty, and she becomes even more determined to rise above her wretched surroundings.
Braving the ridicule of fellow staff, Catherine embarks on a quest for knowledge. Soon the ill-educated and streetwise Kitty McMullen is a ghost from the past, and the well-spoken, well-read Catherine leaves the north-east to follow her dreams. But hardship and heartbreak are not far behind, and there are battles to be fought and won before the child of Jarrow finally comes home.
Catherine (Kitty) McMullen is 17, restless and rebellious. Resentful of her new step-father and yearning for stories of the father she never knew, her discontent grows when her aunt divulges he was a wealthy gentleman. Taking a job at the workhouse she is further confronted with the horrors of poverty and determines to escape it by educating herself. Soon steetwise Kitty is a ghost of the past and the well-spoken Catherine leaves the North East of England to follow her dreams. But hardship and heartbreak are not far behind, and there are battles to be fought and won for this plucky and romantic heroine.
**This book stayed in the Heatseakers Top 20 Fiction Best Sellers lists for several weeks** (Data compiled by Nielsen Bookscan)
To escape the malign interest of her possessive and drunken step-father, Kate Fawcett is sent away from teeming Tyneside and finds work at Ravensworth Castle. She soon attracts the attention of charming, headstrong Alexander Pringle Davies, a distant cousin of the Earl, who risks incurring the wrath of his family by courting lowly Kate. But when Kate finally succumbs and allows herself to be seduced, Alexander is forced into an unwanted betrothal by his father and disappears abroad.
Discovering she is carrying Alexander's child, Kate goes home to face the wrath of her step-father and the censure of their neighbours and resigns herself to a lonely life of drudgery. But is is her daughter Catherine who gives her life meaning and keeps Kate from giving up - that and the hope that Alexander might one day return to claim her and their lively child ...
To escape her possessive and drunken step-father, Kate is sent away from Jarrow to work on the Ravensworth Estate and soon attracts the attention of charming, headstrong Alexander, distant cousin of the Earl. Kate dares to dream of a future together but their love is comsumated in one stolen night of passion and the dream is shattered. Pregnant, Kate must return to face the wrath of her step-father and a bleak future. But she refuses to give up hope that one day Alexander will return to claim her and their love child.
The Great War is over but life in Whitton Grange mining village is hard and dangerous. Louie Kirkup fears becoming a spinster drudge until she sets eyes on 'Red' Sam Ritson: hard, muscled and a natural leader. But the General Strike looms and Louie fears for the fate of her village and unborn child, as the strain takes its tragic toll.
When pretty Sara Pallister's father dies she is taken in by a bullying uncle in Whitton Grange pit-town. Here she is irresistibly drawn to motorbike-riding Joe Dimarco, wild son of the extrovert Italians who run the ice-cream parlour. But as war comes and hostility to the Italians erupts into violence, Sara and Jo's passionate love seems doomed.
1920s to 1980s, family drama, generational saga, North East England, mining tragedy, 2nd World War, page-turners
Young Emmie is rescued from a Gateshead slum by radical mining family the MacRaes. Blossoming into a spirited woman Emmie is wooed by handsome Tom, learning too late he is violent. As war engulfs Europe in 1914, Tom enlists but Emmie supports conscientious objector Rab MacRae and soon they are in love. Then he is arrested and Emmie outcast...
Raised in the slums of Edwardian Tyneside, spirited and out-spoken Maggie Beaton joins the ranks of the suffragettes but is soon a fugitive, spurned by family and friends. Only passionate trade unionist George Gordon stands by her but as the 1st World War looms, Maggie's endurance will be tested to the limit. A moving family drama.
From shipwreck and heartbreak to treachery and war: can their love survive?
Abandoned as a baby and raised in a remote lighthouse off the wild Northumberland coast, Alice Fairchild has always dreamed of adventure. When a fierce storm wrecks a ship nearby, she risks everything in an act of bravery that alters the course of her life.
Aboard the doomed vessel is the handsome John Sinclair, a Scottish soldier on his way to India. The connection between them is instant, but soon fate intervenes and leaves Alice heartbroken and alone. Determined to take charge of her destiny but secretly hoping her path will cross again with John’s, she too makes a new start in colonial India.
Life there is colourful and exotic, but beneath the bright facade is an undercurrent of violence, and when the British invade Afghanistan, Alice is caught up in the dangerous campaign. When at last she hears news of John, she is torn between two very different lives. But will she follow her head or her heart?