“A wonderful, heart-warming account of a bygone way of life in rural England in the 1950s.”



I picked this up at a school fair, I just loved the title but I have to confess I’m not always a fan of this kind of ‘days gone by’ memoir.

It’s Foley’s memoir, about Foley and how after marriage she got sick of scraping by in London and upped and moved her entire family to the Forest of Dean on the English/Welsh border during the mid-twentieth century and as I love the area so much, it was this that drew me in and I settled down to read.

It’s a nice enough story but what really makes it wonderful is the language. It’s such a beautifully written story that you are lost in every page and while the tone of the book is about hardship and suffering, you end up wishing you were there.

Thanks to the beautiful writing I can picture the cottage in my minds’ eye right now as if I had seen it myself and it would take a real hard heart not to fall into this wonderful account of raising a family on good luck and not much else in the 1950s.

In the end, it’s just a lovely memoir, beautifully written and if you fancy getting lost in rural England for a while, it’s definitely worth a read. On researching this book I realised there is another book that goes before it but I don’t feel as though I’ve missed anything and would be happy to read the first book when I come across it. Foley’s observations are wonderful and she captures a time long lost in this beautiful memoir.


Reviewed by:

Kath Cross

Added 20th January 2016

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Kath Cross