THE ANGELS OF LOVELY LANE NADINE DORRIES
PUBLICATION DATE 1ST December 2016 by Head of Zeus
It is 1953 and five very different girls are arriving at the nurses’ home in Lovely Lane, Liverpool, to start their training at St Angelus Hospital.
Dana has escaped from her family farm on the west coast of Ireland. Victoria is running away from a debt-ridden aristocratic background. Beth is an army brat and throws her lot in with bitchy Celia Forsyth. And Pammy has come from quite the wrong side of the tracks in Liverpool.
The world in which they now find themselves is complicated and hierarchical, with rules that must be obeyed. Everyone has their place at St Angelus and woe betide anyone who strays from it.
But when an unknown girl is admitted, after a botched late abortion in a backstreet kitchen, a tragedy begins to unfold which will rock the world of St Angelus to its foundations.
As heart-warming as it is heartbreaking. My nan suffered from TB so I know a little about it.
Liverpool, December 1940. Sixteen year old Emily Haycocks stepfather, Alfred, had returned wounded from fighting with the King’s Own Lancaster regiment. He now walked with a calliper on his leg and a stick in his hand. Emily’s mother was sick, with shallow breathing coughing and blood on her handkerchief. During the day Emily worked at her factory bench, she was able to pretend that this new situation, with an ailing mother and an injured stepfather, did not exist. She could imagine that life was still as it was, before the TB, before the days when she was forced to abandon her plans to train as a nurse at St Angelus. What I enjoyed reading was in St Angelus Hospital, Liverpool, December 1951 is how each area of the hospital, except those where patients slept, was scrubbed by an army of night cleaners, who shuffled along on housemaid’s knees with metal buckets and brushes. A brilliant read that I recommend.