The Mothers of Victory Street (The Bryant Sisters #3) By Pam Howes

review Ù E-book, or Kindle E-pub Ò Pam Howes

From Amazon charts bestseller Pam Howes comes a heartbreaking and uplifting historical novel about a young woman trying to snatch her chance at happiness amongst the ruins of World War Two.

1946, Liverpool. Bella Harrison cannot believe the devastating war that stole the lives of her father and sister is truly over at last. She wonders how they will ever rebuild Victory Street with the city in ruins, and half their neighbours gone. But for now, she and her childhood sweetheart Bobby are happy newlyweds, doting on Bella’s little son, her child with black American pilot, Earl Franklin Junior.

With the other members of Bella’s wartime singing trio, The Bryant Sisters, busy starting families of their own, Bella can’t help but feel a jealous; Bobby’s wartime injuries make a baby impossible. Instead, she focuses on recording and writing songs with her husband. Everything seems to be falling into place until they get a surprising letter: Earl is moving to England and wants to see them.

Earl arrives and is delighted to see that his son is well and happy. He joins them as a singer and together, they start recording songs. But one night as Earl leaves the recording studio, a racist gang brutally attacks him and set the place alight, leaving Bobby trapped inside. Meanwhile, Bella is at home, waiting to tell Bobby a devastating secret…

With peace in Liverpool at last, Bella had hoped for a brighter future. But as she faces her life being ripped apart once again, can she rediscover the strength that carried her through the war?

A totally unputdownable, heart-wrenching historical novel, packed with family secrets, perfect for fans of Dilly Court, Diney Costeloe and Nancy Revell. The Mothers of Victory Street (The Bryant Sisters #3)

The Mothers of Victory Street is a great WWII-era historical fiction saga that is the third book in the enjoyable The Bryant Sisters series. I really enjoyed it.

I have enjoyed this series as a whole. This book takes place in 1946, immediately post-war and we get to follow up with the whole group and their ongoing lives, dramas, obstacles, and triumphs in their attempts to pick up the pieces and finding life and love after the ravages of war.

It was great to follow up with Bella and to find out what happened next in regards to her relationships, friendships, and the twists and turns added a few nice surprises. I really enjoyed the ending.

I hope there are more books after this one in this series.

4/5 stars

Thank you NG and Bookouture for this wonderful arc and in return I am submitting my unbiased and voluntary review and opinion.

I am posting this review to my GR and Bookbub accounts immediately and will post it to my Amazon, Instagram, and B&N accounts upon publication. Pam Howes It was 1946 in Liverpool and the Bryant Sisters had moved on with life after the war. Bella and Bobby were very happy with five-year-old Levi, a happy child who entranced his whole family. Fran, married to Frankie with baby Lorraine, while Edie was married to Stevie, and they were expecting their first child. Bella’s sister Molly was excited about her new career and was slowly recovering from past trauma. But when Bella received a letter from Earl, Levi’s father from America, to say he and his daughter Dianne, along with his sister Ruby, were emigrating to England, Bella was uncertain as to what this would bring for Bobby, Levi and her.

Earl’s arrival saw an immediate closeness between the families and Bella realized her worries had been for nothing. As they moved back toward their war days roles of the Bryant Sisters with Basil once again organizing it all, and Earl joining them, it seemed life would be fulfilled. But with danger approaching from racist, drunk and jealous young men, would all that happiness blow away in the wind? Bella needed the strength that had seen her through the tragedies of war…

The Mothers of Victory Street is the 3rd in the Bryant Sisters series by Pam Howes and once again I thoroughly enjoyed it. Petty jealousies, racist comments and actions, recovery from a brutal and devastating war with much rebuilding needed – Pam Howes writes a wonderful historical story which I highly recommend.

With thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for my digital ARC to read in exchange for an honest review.
Pam Howes I am excited to be taking part in the #BooksOnTour #BlogTour for Pam Howes' delightful third installment of THE MOTHERS OF VICTORY STREET.

I have journeyed alongside the women in this wonderful historical fiction saga series from its beginning, having previously enjoyed The Midwives of Lark Lane by the same author. Whilst the first two take place during the war, THE MOTHERS OF VICTORY STREET begins post-war on Christmas Eve 1946 and thus following into 1947 and 48. It takes on a slightly different dimension as the war has ended so therefore so has ENSA (Entertainments National Service Association) of which the Bryant Sisters were a part, travelling all over Britain to perform for the troops during the dark days of WW2. So what does post-war life look like for the girls now?

The previous book finished as all three girls - Bella, Edie and Fran - married their sweethearts in a triple wedding to Bobby, Stevie and Frankie respectively. Fast forward to 1946 and the focus is now on babies and motherhood as they begin the arduous task of rebuilding their lives post-war.

Bella Harrison lives in the house her husband Bobby grew up in with their respective mothers (Mary and Fenella), Bella's sister (Molly) and Bella's young son Levi, a product of a brief liaison with Earl Franklin Junior, a black American GI who was also a musician that sometimes played with the Bryant Sisters. The story begins on Christmas Eve in 1946 which happens to be little Levi's 5th birthday and a birthday party is underway at their home where a handful of Levi's friends from school are attending. It promises to be a busy day what with a dinner that evening with close family and friends and the excitement of Christmas Day tomorrow.

Bella and Bobby are still very much in love and adore Levi, Bobby having adopted him after their marriage, but Bella years for a baby with her childhood sweetheart and husband. However the war has its left scars on Bobby when he very nearly lost his life in a plane crash over London where he was seriously injured and his father was killed. The result was the possibility that he would never be able to father children and as heartbreaking that is for the couple, they are happy and content with their lives as they are. And then just as life is beginning to settle, Bella receives word that Earl has applied for immigration to the UK with his sister Ruby and daughter Dianna after his divorce. Bella and Bobby begin to fear what this means for their little family. Does Earl want to reclaim his son?

Edie Collins is pregnant with her first child and her husband Stevie has just presented her with the keys to a new house in Victory Street, right across the road from Fran, and a new puppy they call Max after she was left devastated with the death of her previous dog Rebel. Their new neighbours keep themselves to themselves but Edie has noticed the sour looks the wife gives her, Fran and moreso Bella...though why, she has no idea. But one day Edie finds that she relies on the goodness of those neighbours to come to her rescue when she takes a tumble down the stairs, her leg twisted under her body as contractions begin. Dragging herself to the shoe rack Stevie had lovingly made for them, she grabs one of her heels and bangs on the wall between the two houses calling for help. When Rita Jepson hears the sound thinking they are still banging away on renovations, her husband Charlie hear a cry for help. Edie is rushed to hospital with Fran and Charlie following in the car whilst newly friended Rita stays behind to look after Fran's baby Lorraine. Edie's baby isn't due for another few weeks yet...has her fall in some way done any damage to the child they have been so looking forward to?

Fran's life hasn't quite turned out as she had envisioned it when she and Frankie tied the knot in the triple wedding with their friends. All the time he was away fighting in the war, Fran treasured every letter Frankie wrote her but only now did their words begin to take on a whole new meaning. The times he told her that she wouldn't need to work when they were married or have any need for stage clothes, that she will be at home keeping house, that it will be just them as they won't need anyone else. Only now after his moods lead to his griping to his sitting around to his spending the money down the pub to her waiting on him hand and foot to him not allowing her to join her friends as the Bryant Sisters to the black eye and thumping he gave her for talking back...only now does she see those words in a different light. Frankie had meant to control her, to keep her at home and to have her do as she was told. He had no intention of letting her have her independence. As his wife, she belonged to him to do his bidding. She had so loved Frankie but he can't even stand to watch her breastfeed their 4 month old daughter. Now when he isn't at work, he is at the pub with his docker mates and then home to make her life a living misery. Is this to be her life for all eternity?

When Earl Franklin Junior stepped off the Queen Mary at Liverpool docks with his sister Ruby and daughter Dianna, he just knew that this was the beginning of a whole new life for them all. Ruby was a trained theatre nurse and Earl himself would love nothing more than to fly planes for the RAF. After arriving they soon find a place to rent on Victory Street on the other side of the Jepsons to Edie so therefore Dianna could go to the school at which her half brother Levi attends.

But when Fran sees Bella coming out of Earl's house one afternoon, both of them looking far too happy with themselves, and then again the following evening all smiles and kisses as they walked up the street together, she is livid that Bella would do this to Bobby who didn't deserve that sort of treatment. Fran, who had always carried a torch for Bobby, decided to find out if there was trouble in paradise because she sure wouldn't mind consoling Bobby in the aftermath as he licked his wounds.

But that's the least of their worries when a gang jumps Earl as he leaves the new recording studio Bobby and Basil have set up and attack him whilst hurling racist remarks before he blacks out. And then flames are seen coming from the studio...with Bobby and Basil are still inside! Since having his lower leg amputated as a result of his war injury, Bobby is unable to use the stairs should the lift be out of order. Is Bella and Bobby's happily ever after about to come to a tragic end?

With so much going on, THE MOTHERS OF VICTORY STREET (despite Bella and Bobby living on the more affluent Prince Albert Road) is a such a delightful read and fantastic addition to an already wonderful series. There is love, romance, tragedy, heartbreak and all the usual things that come with a saga such as this. But then that is what we love about them. With THE MOTHERS OF VICTORY STREET taking place post-war and everything therein, I found it to possibly be the best of the three books thus far.

Love is in the air for many of Bella and Bobby's extended family in this installment, which does kind of round things off a little. Whilst book 2 saw Bella's sister Molly endure a horrific ordeal, THE MOTHERS OF VICTORY STREET sees her overcoming the consequences and finding happiness at long last.

One thing I want to say is that the line in the premise meanwhile Bella is at home waiting to tell Bobby a devastating secret is misleading. I waited all book for this devastating blow...and it never came.

There is a lot going on within the pages despite it being a quick read, and it is rounded off perfectly at the end in such a way that it could spell the end of the series. I certainly hope not as I for one would love see what's next for the Bryant Sisters!

I would like to thank #PamHowes, #NetGalley and #Bookouture for an ARC of #TheMothersOfVictoryStreet in exchange for an honest review.

This review appears on my blog at https://stinathebookaholic.blogspot.com/.
Pam Howes It’s 1946 and the Bryant sisters have moved on with their lives now that the war has come to an end. The devastating war that took the lives of so many people, including Bella Harrison’s father and sister. The aftermath lives on and the new way of life is much different than how it used to be. Bella wonders how and if they will ever be able to rebuild Victory Street. Bella is happily married to Bobby and they are enjoying their life with five year old Levi. Fran and Frankie have their daughter Lorraine, and Edie and Stevie are expecting their first child. The family dynamics of the sisters is so enthralling and the story is so well portrayed, that you feel as if you are actually part of the family. I always love returning to Victory Street with the Bryant Sisters. The plot twists and turns of this story make it unputdownable and unforgettable. I loved this series from beginning to end.

Thank you Pam Howes for yet another emotional and inspiring story. This unforgettable story is beautifully written and engaging and will definitely be remembered. This must read series is sure to be one of your favorites. The characters were relatable and I highly recommend this entire series, it was absolutely amazing. Pam Howes The Bryant Sisters Book Three in this historical family saga and its 1946 in Wavertree Liverpool, Bella Harrison is happily married now to her childhood sweetheart Bobby and bringing up Bella's son Levi it's peace at last after the devastating war. The singing sister's Bella , Fran and Edie all met in the match factory and formed the singing trio for the soldiers during the war but now all lead lives of wives and mother's and Basil is determined that the show will go on it's just what the city needs to bring a bit of morale back at the new Bold Street Enterprises, With his planned wedding to Fenella Bobby's mum the girl's will be singing for the first time as wives and mother's. no matter what trouble's and matter's face them they always there for their family, then get all dressed up for the variety shows. Oh how I just love this series, an exceptional book that once again I enjoyed, that will bring a few tears to a perfect end to the year 1948 that fulfilled my reading, just perfect once again from this author. so deserved star's and more. Pam Howes

The

I have loved catching up with the girls and their families and to see how their lives are since the war.Bella and Bobby are still very much in love and adore their son Levi but Bella yearns for a baby with Bobby but so far they have been unlucky.Edie is enjoying her life too although heavily pregnant she is so happy with her life as she has her friends and family close by.Fran and Frankie live close too but Fran isn't the girl we know and Bella and Edie have noticed it too.I do love a book that draws you into the story and Pam Howes does exactly that,you feel like you are along side the characters.This is a lovely book with Fabulous story and Fans will love it.5* Pam Howes The Mothers of Victory Street is a great WWII-era historical fiction saga that is the third book in the enjoyable The Bryant Sisters series. I really enjoyed it.

I have enjoyed this series as a whole. This book takes place in 1946, immediately post-war and we get to follow up with the whole group and their ongoing lives, dramas, obstacles, and triumphs in their attempts to pick up the pieces and finding life and love after the ravages of war.

It was great to follow up with Bella and to find out what happened next in regards to her relationships, friendships, and the twists and turns added a few nice surprises. I really enjoyed the ending.

I hope there are more books after this one in this series.

4/5 stars

Thank you NG and Bookouture for this wonderful arc and in return I am submitting my unbiased and voluntary review and opinion.

I am posting this review to my GR and Bookbub accounts immediately and will post it to my Amazon, Instagram, and B&N accounts upon publication. Pam Howes This is the third book of the Bryant Sisters of Victory Street saga. It’s now 1946 the war is over and Bella, Fran and Edie are settling down to lives as wives and mothers. Bella is so happy to be back with her true love Bobby, the only thing spoiling things is that after Bobby’s plane crash he’s unable to give the baby brother or sister she so badly wants for Levi. An unexpected turn of events sees Earl Levi’s biological father move to England to be in his young son’s life. He comes with his daughter too worrying Bella that he’s giving Levi something that her and Bobby can’t. I really enjoyed catching up with all the girls and their families. I am hoping that Pam is busy writing book four now so I don’t have too long before catching up with them all again. A well deserved five stars. Pam Howes The Mothers of Victory Street is the third in the Byrant Sisters series by Pam Howes. A quick recap on the previous two books is given in several paragraphs close to the beginning of the story but to get a true sense of Bella, our main character and all the various ongoing storylines I would suggest reading from the beginning if you haven’t previously done so. It’s been an enjoyable series so far. These books are very much quick and easy reads that are ideal for when you want a read that is not too taxing but yet provides interesting plots to keep the reader guessing as to what could happen to characters you easily come to care for.

It’s December 1946 and Bella, her family and friends are slowly becoming used to life post war. There are still plenty of struggles and angst to endure particularly as the first few months of 1947 prove to be very cold with some of the worst weather ever recorded. I felt the book picked up perfectly from where the previous story had left off and it was like returning to old friends. Bella is now married to Bobby and they are raising her son Levi whom she had with American GI, Earl. He is now back home in America and life for Bella is starting to return to normal and she is beginning to move forward with her life although the fact the injuries Bobby sustained during the war has prevented them from having children together still eats away at her. But still Bella is a great character who has really grown since we were first introduced to her. She has been through so much and has emerged out the other side far stronger and better equipped to deal with what life may throw at her.

Although Bella is the main character in this series I was delighted to see that at last her fellow friends and singers Edie and Fran, who help Bella make up the Byrant Sisters, finally get to feature more heavily in the story. I have wanted this to happen for ages as I have always felt they were left on the side-lines and would have interesting stories to share. Now that Bella has been through the ringer and is finding some happiness in her life I was glad to see the other girls step into the spotlight as did some other members of Bella’s family. That’s not to say Bella was forgotten about completely, we see how she is coping with married life and how young Levi is starting to see how the world views a mixed race child. The issue of racial prejudice and bullying is explored here but even more detail would have been welcome. I found that happened several times overall. Something would happen and it would before it had been explored in any significant detail. The pace of things happening was almost frantic at times and a little more in-depth detail and a slower pace would have allowed the reader to digest things more before the next event occurred.

Bobby himself is grappling with the fact that he can’t provide what Bella would so wish for and that’s something he will have to learn to live with. Earl does make a reappearance in this book and it’s like he is sent to upset the apple cart and the bliss Bella is finding in her life. But I loved how this strand of the story eventually worked out even though the romance element regarding Earl, it felt a bit strange given the various connections. Still if love comes calling you don’t refuse to answer it especially if you have been through such difficult and challenging times. I really did enjoy seeing how the family unit worked as Bella and Bobby live with his mother Fenella and Bella’s mother Mary and sister Molly. It was so lovely to see given how during the war people had been separated and torn apart for so long.

But what held my attention the most was the storylines involving Fran and Edie. Both girls are now married to Frankie and Stevie respectively having had a triple wedding celebration with Bella. Edie is expecting a baby and has just moved into Victory Street where Rita and Charlie are their new neighbours. They themselves had an interesting story and one which I suspect was all too common during those times especially post war. Edie is the more sensible of the pair as I felt Fran had such bitterness eating away at her for quite some time in the book. There was a bit of drama surrounding Edie which resolved itself quickly. This being a prime example as I have mentioned up above of things needing a bit more fleshing out at certain points.

Fran had the more dominant storyline. She soon discovered that for her married life wasn’t a bed of roses and that a lot of men weren’t particularly happy that women were going to continue to work outside the home post war. Singing with the girls gave Fran such joy and she liked having some money of her own. But Frankie was a character who had done a complete 360 since she had first met him. Life working at the docks was not for him and endless jibes from his workmates regrarding Fran’s work situation didn’t help either. Descent into drink made him a brute and all the sweet talking and promises that had made Fran fall in love with him just disappeared down the drain. He was a nasty piece of work that at a pivotal point in the story I feared what the repercussions of his actions would be for all involved. Fran was treated more like a skivvy than a wife and I think it influenced other areas in her life and started to affect her relationship with her friends. She certainly jumped the gun at one stage which would have had the most disastrous of consequences if she had pursued it.

All in all The Mothers of Victory Street is another enjoyable read from Pam Howes and is perfect for family saga readers who like something a little on the lighter end of the spectrum. I felt the ending was a little abrupt with things wrapping up to quickly but that only made me think is there room for one more book to finish off the series and have things come full circle for all involved? Pam Howes Book number 3 in the Bryant sisters series and just like the previous books this one is a excellent read. I am a massive fan of this authors books and every time I start reading one I know I won’t want to do anything else only read it until it’s finished. The way Pam writes is just so wonderful and I always feel like I’m there in the moment with the characters they are that well describe. I can even imagine The Bryant sisters singing aloud in my thoughts, Seriously if you haven’t read this series or any of Pams other books I highly recommend you do. Pam Howes