The Faithful by Juliet  West
(Mantle/Macmillan, 2017)

The Faithful

by Juliet West

As England is pulled towards war, the secrets within two families threaten to tear them apart . . .

July 1935. In the village of Aldwick on the Sussex coast, sixteen-year-old Hazel faces a long, dull summer with just her self-centred mother Francine for company. But then Francine decamps to London with her lover Charles, Oswald Mosley’s blackshirts arrive in Aldwick, and Hazel’s summer suddenly becomes more interesting. She finds herself befriended by two very different people: Lucia, an upper-class blackshirt, passionate about the cause; and Tom, a young working-class boy, increasingly scornful of Mosley’s rhetoric. In the end, though, it is Tom who wins Hazel’s heart - and Hazel who breaks his.

Autumn 1936. Now living in London, Hazel has grown up fast over the past year. But an encounter with Tom sends her into freefall. He must never know why she cut off all contact last summer, betraying the promises they’d made. Yet Hazel isn’t the only one with secrets. Nor is she the only one with reason to keep the two of them apart . . .

From the beaches of Sussex to the battlefields of civil war Spain, The Faithful is a rich and gripping tale of love, deception and desire.

Reviews

The Faithful is a rich, multi-layered story of love, loss and conflict - a story woven around characters so real, they stay with you long after the book has ended. At once heartbreaking and full of hope - with insights so perceptive, drama so compelling I raced through the book to find out where and how it would finish. I loved it, and I'm recommending it to everyone I know!”
- Isabel Ashdown