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!Download E-pub ⚼ The Summer Before the War ⚟ The bestselling author of Major Pettigrew s Last Stand returns with a breathtaking novel of love and war that reaches far beyond the small English town in which it is setEast Sussex,It is the end of England s brief Edwardian summer, and everyone agrees that the weather has never been so beautiful Hugh Grange, down from his medical studies, is visiting his Aunt Agatha, who lives with her husband in the small, idyllic coastal town of Rye Agatha s husband works in the Foreign Office, and she is certain he will ensure that the recent saber rattling over the Balkans won t come to anything And Agatha has immediate concerns she has just risked her carefully built reputation by pushing for the appointment of a woman to replace the Latin master When Beatrice Nash arrives with one trunk and several large crates of books, it is clear she is significantly freethinking and attractive than anyone believes a Latin teacher should be For her part, mourning the death of her beloved father, who has left her penniless, Beatrice simply wants to be left alone to pursue her teaching and writing But just as Beatrice comes alive to the beauty of the Sussex landscape and the colorful characters who populate Rye, the perfect summer is about to end For despite Agatha s reassurances, the unimaginable is coming Soon the limits of progress, and the old ways, will be tested as this small Sussex town and its inhabitants go to war Fans of Major Pettigrew s Last Stand , who were anxiously waiting for a follow up novel of equal charm and dazzle, will be greatly disappointed in this, the second novel by Helen Simonson I was one of those people anxiously awaiting, and greatly disappointed This book is nothing like Major Pettigrew I was both pleased and disappointed in that fact Pleased because I don t want cookie cutter books from authors with thinly veiled sequels to successful first books I want original I wa Fans of Major Pettigrew s Last Stand , who were anxiously waiting for a follow up novel of equal charm and dazzle, will be greatly disappointed in this, the second novel by Helen Simonson I was one of those people anxiously awaiting, and greatly disappointed This book is nothing like Major Pettigrew I was both pleased and disappointed in that fact Pleased because I don t want cookie cutter books from authors with thinly veiled sequels to successful first books I want original I want different To me, that s the sign of a truly gifted writer What disappoints about this novel is that it carries not even a hint of the brilliance that shined so brightly in Simonson s debut Without a doubt the writing is solid I think we can safely place her in the category of authors for whom even their bad books are better than the best efforts of others The Summer Before the War , however, is nearly 500 pages of wasted talent There is nothing that stands out in the storylines, and nothing memorable about the characters Even the historical aspect is forgettable Everything about it is lack luster.Let s face it, Major Pettigrew was high end Chick Lit Chick Lit of the first water It, understandably, set a certain expectation for a second novel by this author Yet, you d be hard pressed to find a duller,lifeless love story than happens in this book It is breathtaking in it s blandness And, it took 465 pages to barely reach mediocrity I will eagerly await her next book, because I think she s proven her writing is worth waiting for But, once the fervor dies down about this, and everyone comes to terms with the sad realities, The Summer Before the War may be considered one of the biggest misses ever to follow a hit I absolutely loved the book The Summer Before the War An Exaltation of LarksBy whatever means necessary get hold of a copy of The Summer Before the War by Helen Simonson and read it Obtain it legally if possible However, should you read it, praise it, press it into the hands of your book loving friends, don t expect it to be returned It s that good I found I loved Ms Simonson s writing in I loved this book Written by the author of Major Pettigrew it takes place in Rye, a small town in East Sussex, in the summer of 1914 before the start of WWI The sweet innocence of the times is brought to life when Beatrice Nash arrives to teach Latin to the students of Rye Beatrice is a well educated woman who must make it on her own after the death of her academic father She struggles against the strictures of her time to find a place For some reason, a woman teaching Latin is relative I loved this book Written by the author of Major Pettigrew it takes place in Rye, a small town in East Sussex, in the summer of 1914 before the start of WWI The sweet innocence of the times is brought to life when Beatrice Nash arrives to teach Latin to the students of Rye Beatrice is a well educated woman who must make it on her own after the death of her academic father She struggles against the strictures of her time to find a place For some reason, a woman teaching Latin is relatively shocking I am not sure why as there are two other women teachers but for some reason Latin is a no no The story of her appointment to the job is one of the funniest scenes I ve read in a long time Beatrice, also, to everyone s horror rides a bicycle and is fiercely independent and competent She s taken under the wing of a town leader, Agatha Kent, who becomes one of my very characters ever She is so diplomatic, loving and full of life Agatha has also raised two nephews, Hugh and Daniel, both interesting characters In fact the town is full of interesting characters including the idiotic wife of the mayor The story is full of women trying to fly on their own wings and it is just 6 years later that American women got the right to vote It is a time of great change and limits are being tested even in the small town of Rye The town decides to help in the upcoming War effort by taking in Belgian refugees and are then horrified to discover families want to stay to together and not be parceled out one at a time The wry humor is delightful There is also a group of gypsies involved who had color to the story And as the year progresses, change comes slowly and painfully Friendships are made and class barriers start to fall Innocence is lost and things are never quite the same It s a lovely, lovely story that so accurately describes the times at least in my opinion that it takes my breath away It is a slow moving book in the way real life is I loved every minute of it I highly recommend it