This is a book about friendships, forgiveness with a glimpse of the suffragette movement during the WW I time period. There seem to be more novels written about the second world war than the first war. This was inspired by true events about women who worked in the historic Kew botanical gardens. It was interesting to read more about this time period. Of course having gardens play a big role in this story was one of the attractions for me.
Women were not given the same considerations as their male counterparts when it came to the jobs in the gardens...or anything else for that matter. A man who never held a shovel was immediatley "hired" for the Kew garden work but the women were questioned as to their abilites. That had to be aggravating for those who grew up on farms and knew far more than the men in charge of the projects.
Our main characters are Louisa, Ivy, Bernie, Jim and Mac. Louisa has escaped a bad situation in Kent and made her way to London to start over. She carved out a life for herself is so happy to have escaped a brutal marriage to a drunken wife beater. Ivy is a suffragette and much younger than Louisa. They work side by side in the gardens with a conscientious objector named Bernie. No one knows this about Bernie but when it's discovered he's labeled a "Conchie," reviled and driven away from his work. There is much more to that story and it was very interesting to me.
I don't want to give spoilers but I can say this was an easy read, nothing violent and no bad language for those who are offended by those details. Reading about the friendships and support of one another during such a terrible time was inspiring.
Publication date April 20, 2021 by Penguin Group Putman. Genre: Historical Fiction.
Thank you to Netgalley for the advanced reader's copy of this book. I was not compensated for the review, all opinions are mine.