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Voices From the Past: The Woman-bookcover

By: Elizabeth Uywin

Voices From the Past: The Woman

Pages: 232 Ratings: 5.0
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This is the concluding book of a trilogy that follows the life of one particular child called Mary, who was born into poverty in 1924. Orphaned when she was two years old, Mary was sent to Reedham Orphanage with her brother, Roy, who was her only comfort in a harsh, uncertain world. When her mother re-married a man who reluctantly gave them a home, that uncertainty followed them. On the outbreak of the Second World War, Mary joined the Land Army, where once again she faced an uncertain future and betrayal, a betrayal that was orchestrated by John, her stepfather. Alone once more, she befriended Dennis, who had just returned from the war and who himself had his own nightmares and uncertainties. Would she ever find the love that she so desperately needed, or would she be too afraid of rejection? Only time would tell.


Elizabeth Uywin was born in Braintree to a farming family in 1951. Most of her childhood memories are of helping her father on the farm, until her family moved to London to be near her Grandmother.

She worked as a secretary to the Chief News Editor of the Press Association and in the court service for many years. This is her first book of three which follows the life of one particular child called Mary, which has been researched over a period of thirty years. Elizabeth Uywin is widowed and lives in Chiswick.

Customer Reviews
1 reviews
1 reviews
  • Julia Wilson

    Voices From The Past - The Woman by Elizabeth Uywin is the final book in the Voices From The Past trilogy. It is another captivating read as we follow Mary Cole through the war years to 1947.
    Having read all three books back-to-back, it has been a powerful journey with Mary Cole. I have been totally emotionally invested since the first page of book one.
    In this final book, Mary Cole becomes a land girl. It was a hard life as she was billeted with a Norfolk farmer who had no time for Londoners. Once more, Mary’s sunny personality shines through as she rolls up her sleeves and does her bit for the war effort.
    Throughout the trilogy we have seen Mary’s heart of compassion for others – whether it was her sister, those bombed out or a lady whose house flooded – Mary’s heart is huge.
    War brought losses – and not always through bombs. There were personal tragedies that would last a lifetime. “I’ve just lost a child… I have to believe that someone somewhere is taking care of my boy. The thought of Jesus being with him helps me cope.” What a heartbreaking scene. We witness the importance of faith in life. This ordinary life of faith contrasts with that of the parish priest who seems more interested in high teas and a tit for tat type of religion.
    Family is important to some. It is emotional to read of a character not only pushed away in younger life but whom adults actually actively conspired against to prevent happiness. My heart just broke.
    The final book included many photos of the characters. It was wonderful to put faces to names. I also enjoyed reading the synopsis as to what the characters did for the rest of their lives.
    Voices From The Past has been a fabulous series. It is broadly a social commentary on the age with a soft focusing in on Mary Cole. As a historian, the trilogy is absorbing and educating. As a reader, it has been a fascinating and emotional journey through the 1920s, ’30s, and ’40s. I think anyone from the ages of twelve to an adult will enjoy this wonderful trilogy.
    I received a free copy from the publishers Austin Macauley. A favourable review was not required. All opinions are my own.

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