Tears are streaming down my face. I have just finished reading The Silent Hours by Cesca Major. For the past couple of days I have been submerged in mid-west France during the Second Word War. Shortages, anti-Semitism, families uprooted and torn apart; you know the kind of stuff but this book slowly reveals deep secrets that came as a revelation to me. Six people narrate the story. Adeline, a mute woman who has been sheltered in a nunnery for eight years. Isabelle, a young teacher, and her brother Paul, who is away fighting for France. Tristan, a nine year old boy who has fled with his family from occupied Paris to the safety of a small village. Sebastien, a young Jewish banker who cannot fight because of a leg injury. Love, loss, romance, prejudice and horror are all revealed to us by their six strong voices. The Silent Hours is one of those books that has you transfixed. That my family have eaten or that my children have got to school is a minor miracle as my nose has barely been out of the book. The six narrators’ stories all lead up to one shocking event that really happened, but which I had no idea had happened before opening the covers this book. When you buy this book, and I urge you to, make sure you buy a large box of tissues at the same time.
The Silent Hours by Cesca Major, published by Corvus. £12.99