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The Sun's Companion
 
 

The Sun's Companion [Kindle Edition]

Kathleen Jones
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)

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Product Description

Product Description

It's 1935. Tamar Fell has no family - or so she's been told - and she relies on the friends she makes as she's dragged from lodging house to lodging house by her mother - the reckless, beautiful Sadie. Then Tamar meets Anna Weissmann, exiled from her own family by European politics, and they forge a friendship that will last through bereavement, failed love affairs, internment, betrayal, and the dislocations of war.

Kathleen Jones is a biographer and poet whose short stories have won several awards including a Cosmopolitan fiction prize and a Fay Weldon award. Kathleen’s biography of Catherine Cookson was in the top 10 best-seller racks in WH Smith for 8 weeks. This is her first novel. The Sun’s Companion has been awarded the Awesome Indies Seal of Approval – a guaranteed ‘Good Read’.

What readers have said about The Sun's Companion:-

‘Wartime North Shields and Cumbria are the well-wrought backgrounds to this compelling novel about two very different young women growing up through dramatic times. Poet and biographer Kathleen Jones's move into fiction should be celebrated by readers and writers alike.' Wendy Robertson, best-selling author of Sandie Shaw and the Millionth Marvel Cooker, Land of Our Possession, and Kitty Rainbow.

‘I'm not entirely sure how to describe this novel other than to say I loved it! Not literary fiction, not genre fiction, almost the novelisation of a book of modern history, with characters I came to care about and scenes that were vivid and real. . . I don't think I've ever read anything that has immersed me so thoroughly in time and place. These people must be real and I'm sure if I go and visit the area, these farms will actually exist! Utterly gripping and I didn't want it to end.' Debbie Bennett, best-selling author of Hamelin'sChild and Edge of Dreams. IEBR Review.

‘This is an extremely well-written book, and exceptionally enjoyable. It's difficult to put it down once started. Thank you for a refreshing, historical fiction book that is also entertaining.’ Dawn Edwards, Kindle Book Review

‘I found The Sun’s Companion an engrossing read, hard to put down. If you like to "disappear" into the world of a book, you'll find this a satisfying read. Jones paints a comprehensive, moving (but never sentimental) picture of life in north east England during the early years of the war, achieving what only very good writers can do: she makes the familiar seem unfamiliar.’ Linda Gillard, author of House of Silence, Emotional Geology, Untying the Knot.

‘Full of drama, intrigue and heartbreak.' Natalie Braine, Orion

‘Kathleen Jones really understands the art of story and how it works. Her effortless-seeming prose had me completely engaged.’ Pauline Fisk, Goodreads

‘It is written with such passion and attention to detail that I slipped away easily into the worlds of Tamar and Anna. ' Pink Fox.

About the Author

Kathleen Jones is a biographer and poet whose short fiction has won several awards including a Cosmopolitan fiction prize and a Fay Weldon award. Kathleen's biography of Catherine Cookson was in the top 10 best-seller racks in WH Smith for 8 weeks. This is her first novel. The Sun's Companion has been awarded the Awesome Indies Seal of Approval - a guaranteed 'Good Read' and was short-listed for the Kindle Book Review 'best romantic fiction' of 2013.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 731 KB
  • Print Length: 432 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: The Book Mill (14 Jan 2014)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S. r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00988FNC0
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #116,434 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

KATHLEEN JONES was born and brought up on a hill farm in Cumbria and now lives with her partner, sculptor Neil Ferber, in a small house in an olive grove in northern Italy while working on another book. She has been writing since she was a child and has published twelve books including seven biographies, a novel and a collection of poetry. She lived for ten years in Africa and the Middle East, where she worked for the Qatar Broadcasting Corporation. Since then she has written extensively for BBC radio and contributed to several television documentaries.

Kathleen was appointed as a Royal Literary Fund Fellow in 2007. Her latest biography, 'Katherine Mansfield: The Storyteller' was published by Penguin NZ and Edinburgh University Press in 2010. A new 'Readers' Guide' to the life and work of Margaret Forster, called 'Margaret Forster: A Life in Books' is available as an e-book, and a novel 'The Sun's Companion' was published by The Book Mill in 2012. Her latest collection of poetry 'Not Saying Goodbye at Gate 21', published by Templar Poetry, won the 2011 Straid Award.

She is best known for her award-winning biographies, but has also published poetry, feature articles and short fiction in a variety of national and international magazines and newspapers. Her short stories have been broadcast on BBC Radio and on radio networks in Holland, Germany and Spain. She was one of the featured authors in the recent 'Save our Short Story Anthology' compiled by the Arts Council on the internet. As a journalist Kathleen has written articles and reviews for the Independent, the Guardian, the Daily Express, and the TLS, as well as magazines such as SHE and Cosmo.

Kathleen Jones is an enthusiastic blogger, writing an on-line journal 'A Writer's Life' and a book review blog. She is part of the 'Tuesday Poem' group, based in New Zealand. Kathleen regularly leads creative writing workshops for fiction, poetry and life writing. In September each year she also tutors a residential writing course at Peralta in Italy with American novelist Mary-Rose Hayes.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Honest and moving 9 Oct 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This is my kind of book - clear, understated, chronological, full of little details that bring the immediate pre World War 2 era to life.

Anna's and Tamar's lives are given alternate attention so that the gradual unfolding of the story retains my interest. Although they enter the book as barely-teenagers and are shown as relatively powerless in their society/families due to youth and being girls, neither of them is a cypher and they each have distinct characters and ambitions.

In many ways this novel is about the shadows that lie beneath each character's story. Tamar is never quite sure whether she is Sadie's legitimate daughter or not; Anna takes years to recover from her childhood rape in Germany. Kathleen made me deeply sympathetic towards both of them as they journey into the war years and womanhood. The people they meet, love and hate are all solidly realised and have their own motivations. Anna and Tamar are not high minded fantasy heroines, but real and believable people who cope in realistic ways with the necessities of wartime life.

I shall look forward to reading the sequel.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Utterly engaging 8 Oct 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Kathleen Jones uses her skill as a biographer and researcher to fill the pages of this novel with vibrant historical detail and a thoroughly engaging story. It kept me reading long after I should have turned off the bedside light! The novel has a form of its own; an authentic voice for an account that not only convinces us of her characters' existence, but of the author's authority of the historical period, from the grand political arena to the personal details of women's lives. The conflicts that Jones elucidates are not only of nations at war, but of the social changes that are forced upon society. For women, a treacherous and challenging theatre.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Delightful Entry into the Lists of Fiction 8 Oct 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
As a biographer of great writers from Kathleen Mansfield to Catherine Cookson, this writer is well armed to enter the risky lists of fiction. And so she moves between literary finesse and storytelling elan with some ease in this novel. Her research, as one would expect, is impeccable but the most endearing aspect of this novel is the way Kathleen Jones inhabits the lives of the two girls at the centre of this story. (No wonder a reviewer here says the believes they really exist... Engendering that belief is the magic of fiction) Kathleen Jones's sure touch with farming life in the wartime North should put her on the on bedside shelves and on the curriculum lists of anyone studying the World War 2 on the Home Front. Above all it is a great read.
Now we wait for the next novel.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Richly-detailed , compelling read 21 Sep 2012
By Debbie
Format:Kindle Edition
This is not at all my usual reading material, so I'm not entirely sure how to describe this novel - other than to say I loved it! Not literary fiction, not genre fiction - it's almost the novelisation of a book of modern history, with characters I came to care about and scenes that were vivid and real. It's the story of Tamar and Anna, teenagers from very different backgrounds, set against the backdrop of war.

Tamar has spent her life on the move from town to town, dragged around by her flighty mother and longing to put down roots and find somewhere she can call home. She believes her father to be dead and while she loves her mother and her unconventional way of life, she longs for stability, security and an education. Meanwhile Anna is part German, part English - and part Jew growing up in 1930s Germany. As Anna's English mother runs for home and safety, Anna is forced to leave behind her beloved father and everything she knows to the mercy of the growing threat of Hitler and everything he stands for.

Two new girls at the same school in North East England, both are thrown into what at times is an uneasy friendship. Tamar longs for university but is forced to leave school and start earning in order to survive. Anna's well-off English grandparents will pay for her education, but all Anna wants is to paint. And as England slips over the edge into war, both discover hidden strengths and a bond that will stand the test of war, time and everything else fate can throw at it.

This is a richly-detailed novel giving a fascinating insight into everyday life in war-time England. From rationing to bomb shelters, from the hard daily grind of the land-girls to the government run internment camps, from boarding-house to docks, everything is vividly alive, engaging all five senses.
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