Portsmouth, January 1941. When the Luftwaffe unleashes its full fury on the city in the first of three major blitzes, the Taylor family are bombed out. Judy finds her job relocated from the gutted Guildhall to a hotel in Southsea, and home is now a small terraced house in April Grove, with one fewer bedroom and no bathroom or inside lavatory. And then there is the news she has been dreading: her sailor fiance has been killed. Judy and her young, recently widowed aunt Polly decide to turn their grief to good account, and join the WVS - running canteens, accompanying evacuee children, and helping the families of servicemen, often in the face of danger from air raids, flying bombs and V2 rockets. Gradually, Judy and Polly find their own grief healing as they take part not only in their war work but in the life of April Grove, and although both are at first convinced they will never know love again, they both find it in the least likely manner.
Lilian Harry grew up in Portsmouth and now lives in a village on the edge of Dartmoor with three ginger cats and a black and silver miniature schnauzer with a fan club bigger than that of her mistress. She has a son, a daughter and two grandchildren, and is a keen walker.