SHAKE DOWN THE STARS by Frances Donnelly


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A first novel by Britisher Donnelly that follows the WW II exploits of three Englishwomen--an aristocratic filly, a daughter of the newly rich, and a gardener's girl. As usual, breeding is all. . . .especially in the case of Beattie Blythe, raised in the shadow of a great house in Suffolk, but harboring her own great ideas: to earn a teaching degree and free herself from the lower class. Alas, while in school she succumbs to the potent charms of the egocentric villain, Brooke Musgrave, an RAF pilot and frequenter of weekend orgies at his friends' country estates. Meanwhile, Brooke's purebred sister, Virginia, vows to leave home and make her mark in London ("I will get away from here," she tells herself. "If it means being nice to people, I'll manage it somehow"). In town, Virginia works at a publishing firm, and is especially nice to lots of men in uniform. Her pal Lucy, a writer's daughter, marries a soldier who heads for the front right after the wedding, leaving Lucy to join the Women's Land Army, milking cows in Suffolk and falling for an American G.I. As it turns out, pregnancy is the main enemy of the women fighting on the homefront; Beattie bears Brooke a baby, but eventually marries one of his flyboy colleagues; Lucy snares her Kentuckian; and Virginia loses her one true love--which, in the end, is just what the selfish cat deserves. Another story of women who allow themselves to be victimized for the sake of love, offering a vivid portrait of London during the Blitz, familiar plot turns, warm, cuddly characters, and lots of vapid teatime chat.

Pub Date: March 16th, 1989
ISBN: 312-01819-3
Publisher: St. Martin's
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