Firstly I wish to thank Sarah Hardy of Bloodhound Books for inviting me to be part of this Blog Tour for THE ABANDONED by Sharon Thompson.
Peggy Bowden has not had an easy life. As a teenager her mother was committed to an asylum and then a local priest forced her into an abusive marriage. But when her husband dies in an accident Peggy sees an opportunity to start again and trains as a midwife.
In 1950s Dublin it is not easy for a woman to make a living and Peggy sees a chance to start a business and soon a lucrative maternity home is up and running. But when Peggy realizes that the lack of birth control is an issue for women, she uses their plight as a way to make more money. Very soon Peggy is on the wrong side of the law.
What makes a woman decide to walk down a dark path? Can Peggy ever get back on the straight and narrow? Or will she have to pay for her crimes?
Set against the backdrop of Ireland in the 1950’s The Abandoned tells the story of one woman’s fight for survival and her journey into the underbelly of a dangerous criminal world.
HERE ARE MY THOUGHTS AND REVIEW
The story begins in Dublin in the 1950’s where God-fearing women were expected to know their place in society. It was a time when good girls got married, stayed at home and often became pregnant time and time again. For some contraception was not an option but neither was bringing another mouth into the world to feed and clothe.
Peggy has the sharp mind that soon spots a niche in the market for her skills as a midwife and an added bonus of making a little illegal profit as a side line. Peggy isn’t a bad person just a woman who has had to fend for herself most of her life. She has learnt to depend on just one person and that is herself. When one business goes belly up she is quick to replace it with another that is soon in demand with some men in the area. Peggy has a strong attachment to one particular young woman who is very popular with the clients, the only problem is that the lass isn’t too bright and is at times unpredictable. It was as if Peggy couldn’t or wouldn’t let herself form any sort of normal relationship so taking this young woman under her care was like an emotional outlet.
The old saying practice what you preach goes out of the window after a moment of carelessness and need just to be wanted, makes Peggy reassess her life and look back on the way she has lived. Peggy is a vibrant character that I would stay clear of. She is a survivor. I was quite fascinated to see how she manipulated situations for her benefit. The story covers so many topics, from illegal abortions to murder, prostitution to crime syndicates all touched by Peggy in different ways.
An engrossing story which is so hard to look back at and think that things like this really happened not that long ago. A super debut.
HERE IS A LITTLE ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Sharon Thompson lives in Donegal, Ireland. She is a member of Imagine, Write, Inspire. This is a writing group, under the mentorship of HarperCollins author Carmel Harrington. Sharon’s short stories have been published in various literary magazines and websites. #WritersWise is her collaboration with writer, Dr Liam Farrell. This is a trending, fortnightly, promotional tweet-chat with corresponding Facebook page and website (www.writerswise1.wordpress.com). Its mission is to encourage and support writers to reach as wide an audience as possible. Although she mostly writes crime fiction, Sharon does have a fun-side and she writes the quirky Woman’s Words column for the Donegal Woman wesbite. Sharon Thompson. Writing Fun is her writing page on Facebook and she tweets @sharontwriter.