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How It Was

How It Was

In a 1970s village in rural Kent, lives go on in an unremarkable way. But Marion Deacon, struggling with being a wife and mother, is about to set events in motion that she cannot control in a story of love, motherhood, betrayal, and long-hidden secrets . . . because everyone has at least one secret.

‘Immersive, amazing, remarkable’ Marian Keyes
‘Janet Ellis writes with tenderness and wisdom’ Erin Kelly
‘What an incredible piece of storytelling‘ Emma Kennedy
‘Wonderfully evocative, immersive’ Kate Eberlen
‘Complex and compelling’ Lynne Parker
‘Incredibly seductive’ Imogen Parker

Marion Deacon sits by the hospital bed of her dying husband, Michael. Outwardly she is, as she says, an unremarkable old woman. She has long concealed her history – and her feelings – from the casual observer. But as she sits by Michael’s bed, she’s haunted by memories from almost forty years ago . . .

Marion Deacon is a wife and mother, and not particularly good at being either. It’s the 1970s and in her small village the Swinging 60s, the wave of feminism, the prospect of an exciting life, have all swerved past her. Reading her teenage daughter’s diary, it seems that Sarah is on the threshold of getting everything her mother Marion was denied, and Marion cannot bear it – what she does next has terrible and heart-breaking consequences for the whole family.

Janet Ellis writes of the exquisite pain of being in the wrong place at the wrong time, the complexity of family and a mother-daughter relationship that is as memorable as it is utterly believable.
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Genre: Fiction & Related Items / Modern & Contemporary Fiction (post C 1945)

On Sale: 8th August 2019

Price: £16.99

ISBN-13: 9781473625198


You will love this - immersive, amazing, remarkable, I could barely breathe. I cried - and I never cry.
Marian Keyes
It's wonderful. A brutal tale of a fraught mother-daughter relationship. The writing fizzes along. Loved it.
Emma Kennedy
Janet Ellis writes with tenderness and wisdom about how you can lose a child while they are still under your roof - and how a child long-lost will never leave you. I veered between laughter and a lump in the throat, often on the same page. This book will sneak up behind you and break your heart.
Erin Kelly
I absolutely loved it. The careful evocation of an era is incredibly seductive . . . These are real, believable, fragile people whose lives the reader becomes totally immersed in and gripped by.
Imogen Parker
Explores the human condition with pin-sharp precision, so accurate it hurts. It's a raw read, complex and compelling in its structure, with emotions laid bare. Written with empathy and integrity.
Lynne Parker
Wonderfully evocative, immersive and beautifully written
Kate Eberlen