Firstly I wish to thank Anne Cater of Random Things Blog Tours for inviting me on the Blog Tour for Notes from the Lost by Cathie Hartigan
In October 1943, when prisoners of war Alfie and Frank escape from a train taking them to Germany, their lives depend on the family of shepherds who shelter them. In constant jeopardy, the young men wait out the winter in the Italian mountains. In 2000, Ros Goudy inherits her music teacher’s home in Exeter and there she finds letters that reveal the soldiers’ fate. Only one made it back, but it wasn’t to a warm welcome and happy ever after. What had happened that turned heads and hearts against him? The trail she follows begins with a charming comic song composed before the war. What she discovers is that everyone, including herself, has something to hide.
HERE ARE MY THOUGHTS AND REVIEW
What a beautifully told story this is. In Italy in 1943 two men that have been best of friends way before the war, Alfie and Frank, are being transported on a POW train. Along with some of the other men they escape by jumping from the train and hiding in caves. The two friends eventually are taken into the protection of a local shepherd and his family in the Italian mountains.
Jumping forward to the year 2000, when struggling musician Ros inherits the home of her former music teacher Dorothy, she is unsure about staying in the house that was constantly filled with music or selling it and returning to London. Ros discovers a box containing letters and other memorabilia from the past and begins to read them. They are from a young man who has gone to war with her brother Frank, Alfie. What unfolds is a beautiful love story, the courage of a village and scarifies both at home and abroad.
The days of the war ended but the repercussions of events were still rippling through to the year 2000. Get the tissues out because boy will you need them. I was so very involved with the past as it unfolded and loved how things were developing in present day.
Ros didn’t just hold her own future in her hands she held the destiny of the people that she now knew as friends. What an incredible story. I loved the songs, felt like I could hear the music and adored the ending. Truly a wonderful read.
I wish to thank the publisher for an e-copy of this book which I have honestly reviewed.
HERE, IS A LITTLE ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Cathie Hartigan lives in the beautiful, historic city of Exeter.
Although her professional training was in music, a decade ago she swapped one keyboard for another in order to take her life-long love of writing more seriously. Since then, she has won several prizes for her short stories and was a finalist in the annual Woman and Home short story competition three times.
Cathie lectured in creative writing for nine years at Exeter College before leaving to found CreativeWritingMatters.co.uk, which offers a range of writing services and administers four international literary competitions a year, including The Exeter Novel Prize and The Trisha Ashley Award.
When not writing, Cathie sings in a small vocal ensemble. The beautiful Devon coastline also provides plenty of distraction but on a rainy day if there’s an opera or theatre screening at the cinema, she’ll be there.