The Indomitable Spirit
Girls In Tin Hats by Annie Murray is a powerful historical tale that will break your heart whilst simultaneously filling it with love and admiration.
The novel is set in Small Heath in Birmingham during the early years of World War II. It is a close-knit community with some big personalities. People were poor, living in back-to-backs, food was rationed but they shared all they had and helped where they could. People were in and out of each other’s homes as the spirit of community was alive and well.
Birmingham suffered dreadfully during the Blitz. It is a well-known fact that much of Coventry was destroyed on the night of 14th November 1940 but Birmingham also suffered, being bombed night after night. (Incidentally my Dad who lived in Birmingham at the time kept a notebook of bombing raids, it makes for fascinating reading) The indomitable spirit of the Birmingham people could not be kept down.
We follow the wardens on their nightly duties. They keep others safe as they walk the streets whilst the bombs fall. They see sights that no one should have to see.
Life goes on – babies are born, people fall in love despite, or maybe because of, being surrounded by death. Old friendships are strengthened, new friendships are made.
We witness the morals of some being eroded, as they lived for today because tomorrow was not guaranteed.
As with all Annie Murray’s novels, the characters are realistically and wonderfully drawn. I loved hearing, in my head, the Birmingham dialect.
Birmingham is my home town so I loved being familiar with the locations and the people.
Girls In Tin Hats was a fabulous read about a wonderful community of people.
I received a free copy via Net Galley. A favourable review was not required. All opinions are my own.