Books

Balancing Act

Joanna Trollope

Four strong women. All working in a family business. But what happens when they begin to want different things? And what about the men – and the children – in their lives?

Susie Moran has always been the breadwinner in her family. Her husband was the one who was there for their three girls. But now he wants something of his past back – the life he had before Susie’s career took off, before they had children. And those children don’t see their mother’s business the way she has always seen it, thereby threatening the balance she has worked so hard to achieve.

And then, amidst the simmering tensions, someone significant from the past, someone almost forgotten, turns up. The problems of the past, the present, and the future all become challenges to the stability of both family and work. Which relationships – if any – will survive?

The Soldier's Wife

Joanna Trollope

The soldiers are coming home – after six months in Afghanistan. Surely being reunited with their wives and girlfriends and families will be heaven, after the hell they have been through.

When Dan Riley returns to his adored wife, Alexa, and their children, his Army life still comes first. Alexa thought she was prepared to help him, and the whole family, to make the transition to normal life again – but no-one had told her how lonely and near impossible the task would be. Does marrying a soldier always have to mean that you are not marrying a man, but a regiment?

Joanna Trollope: The Other Family & A Village Affair

Joanna Trollope

This special 2-for-1 collection features two classic Joanna Trollope novels: The Other Family and A Village Affair.

The Other Family:

Chrissie, in the twenty-three years she'd been together with Richie, had always believed that he loved her. He loved their three daughters and their house in Highgate and their happy, lively existence. But if she really was the love of his life, why had he never given her the one thing that would have made her life perfect?

Then suddenly Richie is no longer there, and without him Chrissie's carefully constructed life is in jeopardy.The one big fact she had always tried to keep from her daughters threatens to overwhelm them all. For Richie had still been married to his first wife, the one with a son that he had abandoned in Newcastle.

And now, with Richie gone and the practicalities of wills and money to be sorted out, it is finally time for the two families to face each other ...

A Village Affair:

The Grey House is the answer to everything in Alice Jordan's perfect life. It seems to be the ultimate achievement of her outwardly happy marriage – a loyal, if dull husband, three children, two cars and now the house. So why does she feel as if something crucial is missing?

As Alice and her family settle themselves into village life the something missing becomes something huge and then breaks, scandalizing the village, opening up old wounds. But because of it, Alice begins to feel that there is hope and humour, understanding and compassion in the new life she must build for herself.

Daughters-in-Law

Joanna Trollope

When you've dedicated your life to your children, what happens when they grow up?

Rachel loves being at the centre of her large family. She has devoted herself fiercely to bringing up her three sons, but at their childhood home on the wide, bird-haunted coast of Suffolk, Rachel finds that her control begins to slip away. Other women - her daughters-in-law - are usurping her position. They have become more important to her boys than she is.

A crisis brings these subtle rifts to the surface. Can there be a way forward, if they are to survive as a family?

The Other Family

Joanna Trollope

Chrissie, in the twenty-three years she'd been together with Richie, had always believed that he loved her.

He loved their three daughters and their house in Highgate and their happy, lively existence. But if she really was the love of his life, why had he never given her the one thing that would have made her life perfect?

Then suddenly Richie is no longer there, and without him Chrissie's carefully constructed life is in jeopardy.The one big fact she had always tried to keep from her daughters threatens to overwhelm them all. For Richie had still been married to his first wife, the one with a son that he had abandoned in Newcastle.

And now, with Richie gone and the practicalities of wills and money to be sorted out, it is finally time for the two families to face each other ...

Friday Nights

Joanna Trollope

Friday nights, the best night of the week, the night they all looked forward to more than they cared to admit - talking, drinking, laughing and crying together.

They were six female friends, different in age and circumstances, but with one common need: the warmth and support of their Friday nights. It was a time to share secrets and fears, triumphs and tragedies and, above all, to feel safe in the company of women friends. But things never stay the same forever, especially when a man is introduced into the mix...

Second Honeymoon

Joanna Trollope

Ben is, at last, leaving home. At twenty-two, he's the youngest of the family. His mother, Edie, an actress, is distraught. His father, Russell, a theatrical agent, is rather hoping to get his wife back. His brother, Matthew, is struggling in a relationship in which he achieves and earns less than his girlfriend. And his sister, Rosa, is wrestling with debt and the end of a turbulent love affair.

Meet the Boyd family and the empty nest, twenty-first-century style.

Britannia's Daughters

Joanna Trollope

In Britannia's Daughters, bestselling novelist Joanna Trollope examines the contribution of women in building and sustaining the British Empire. She draws on a vast range of sources, including diaries and letters home. She provides a panoramic picture of the countless women who departed Britain for India, Australia, the Far East, Canada and Africa - often in search of opportunities unavailable at home.

Here are penniless pioneers and governors' wives, missionaries and prostitutes, explorers and army nurses. They people this book as they peopled the Empire - their astonishing courage and endurance, their remarkable personal stories vividly and enthrallingly recaptured.

Brother & Sister

Joanna Trollope

Nathalie and David have been good and dutiful children to their parents, and now, grown-up, with their own families, they are still close to one another. Brother and sister.

Except that they aren't - brother and sister that is.They were both adopted, when their loving parents, found that they couldn't have children themselves. And up until now it's never mattered.

But suddenly, Nathalie discovers a deep need to trace her birth parents and is insisting that David makes the same journey. And through this, both learn one of the hardest lessons of all, that sometimes, the answers to who we are and where we come from can be more difficult than the questions ...

Girl From The South

Joanna Trollope

Gillon - red-haired, intelligent, vulnerable - comes to London to escape from the demands of her wealthy, conventional, socially superior family in Charleston, South Carolina. An art historian, she has a chance meeting with Tilly, whose long-term boyfriend Henry is a wildlife photographer who is finding it hard to commit. Before long Gillon has moved into their flat, replacing Henry's old mate William, William's on-off-girlfriend Susie, and a lots of mess and disorganisation. Things are changing, and Tilly finds it difficult to accept that her dreams of settling down with Henry are receding further into the distance, especially when Henry announces that he is going to South Carolina to photograph the abundant wildlife of the area.

There, Henry is wholly seduced by the charms of Charleston, by Gillon's family, and by the old patrician way of life which presents itself. The rules seem to be changing, the time passing by, and the future is becoming less and less certain...

Marrying The Mistress

Joanna Trollope

Merrion Palmer has been Judge Guy Stockdale's mistress for the last seven years and his wife and two grown-up sons know absolutely nothing about her.Up until now, Guy and Merrion have enjoyed a blissfully, uncomplicated relationship in stolen moments in Merrion's flat, and to the rest of the world, Guy has played the part of model husband, father and grandfather.

But now the time has come for things to change.Guy has become conscious of wasted years and he wants to share his relationship with Merrion with the world.He wants, dammit, to marry her.Yet he is quite unprepared for the storm that will follow ...

Other People's Children

Joanna Trollope

For eight-year-old Rufus life has become complicated. His parents, Josie and Tom, have divorced and are setting off on separate paths. But now, other people have had to become involved, like his mother's new husband Matthew and his father's new friend Elizabeth. What's even worse is that there are other children too, Matthew's three teenagers, who have been conditioned by their mother Nadine to hate his mother Josie.
Matthew's children come to their father for weekends and make it clear how much they loathe Josie. Rufus secretly prefers to be with his father, in his peaceful flat in Bath, where he realises that he doesn't actually hate the idea of a stepmother, if she is peaceful and sane like Elizabeth. But where other people's children are concerned, neat solutions seldom occur ...

Next Of Kin

Joanna Trollope

The land running down to the River Dean has been farmed by the Meredith family for generations. Robin Meredith bought the farm from his father, just before he married his wife Caro and now he and his brother Joe work on the land. But now Caro has died, as much as a mystery to the family as she was when she arrived twenty years ago, and the whole family feels her loss acutely, none more so than her adopted daughter Judy.

Into this unhappy family comes Zoe, Judy's London friend, an outsider with an independent spirit and a disturbing directness.Everyone underestimates Zoe's power as a catalyst for change as the realities behind the seeming idyll of a rural community become ever clearer..

The Best Of Friends

Joanna Trollope

Gina and Laurence have been the best of friends ever since they were teenagers.They have never been in love - just friends.Now, Gina is married to the exquisitely tasteful Fergus and lives in stylish perfection at High Place.Laurence is married to down-to-earth Hilary and lives in the Bee House, a home and hotel.

Then, with elegant disdain, Fergus announces that he is leaving Gina and their teenage daughter.As Gina's misery ricochets through the two homes, she turns for emotional support to Laurence, her dearest friend.And as Laurence gives comfort, so his own marriage and the stability of his children edges towards destruction ...

A Spanish Lover

Joanna Trollope

Lizzie and Frances are twins, together forming part of a unit.At least that's the way Lizzie sees things. Lizzie is the twin who has everything, husband, children, a flourishing career and a beautiful house and worries about Frances who seems to lead a solitary life in London ricocheting from one disastrous man to the next. Lizzie just wants Frances to share in her own complete and satisfying life.

Then one day Frances announces she isn't coming to Lizzie's for Christmas, she's going to Spain instead. And, equally unexpectedly, Lizzie's world begins to tilt, Frances's Christmas defection seems overwhelmingly threatening to their unity.

As Frances's future begins to change into something exciting and Lizzie's deteriorates as financial pressures eat into her ideal lifestyle, could it be that Frances is the twin with everything?.

The Men And The Girls

Joanna Trollope

Julia Hunter and Kate Bain have found true happiness with men old enough to be their fathers. Julia organises her husband Hugh and their cherubic twins with ruthless efficiency and Kate has lived with James, for eight years,and although she refuses to marry him, she's apparently devoted to him. Hugh and James, lifelong friends, feel blessed indeed.

But age differences cannot be ignored forever and when James accidentally knocks a fiercely independent spinster from her bicycle a chain of events is set off in which many suppressed discontents and frustrations emerge. Kate begins to seek out friends of her own age and Julia's career begins to blossom just as her husband's starts to decline ...
The tranquil lives of the men and the girls seem shattered as new relationships develop and old anxieties surface.

The Choir

Joanna Trollope

In the gentle precinct of Aldminster Cathedral, crisis loomed. The urbane and worldly Dean (Purdey guns and the regular arrival of a delivery van from Berry Brothers) wanted nothing so much as to restore and beautify his beloved Cathedral - even if it meant sacrificing the Choir School to pay for it. Alexander Troy, Headmaster of the school, a conscientious man, somewhat out of his depth with his elusive and poetical wife (once seen walking barefoot in the dew across the Cathedral Close) was determined that nothing and no-one - certainly not the overbearing Dean - should destroy the Choir. As the rift widened into machiavellian dimensions, many others found themselves caught in the schism - Leo Beckford, brilliant but wayward organist, repelling the adoration of the Dean's dreadful daughter - the gentle, left-wing Bishop, trying to soothe the angry protagonists - Sally Ashworth, mother of the leading chorister, fighting loneliness and an erring and absent husband. Each frail and human dilemma took its part in the greater turmoil of Chapter and Close and the final battle for the survival of the Choir.

The Rector's Wife

Joanna Trollope

For twenty years, Anna Bouverie, as a priest's wife, has served God and the parish in a variety of ways. She has baked for the Brownies, delivered parish magazines, washed and ironed her husband's surplices and clothed herself and her children in jumble-sale items.

When her husband fails to gain promotion to archdeacon and retreats into isolated bitterness, and the bullying of her daughter at the local comprehensive reaches an intolerable level, Anna rebels. She takes a job in the local supermarket where she earns her own money, her sense of self-worth, the shocked disapproval of the parish and the icy fury of her husband.

She also attracts the passionate interest of three very different men, each of whom was to play a significant part in the blossoming of her life ...

A Passionate Man

Joanna Trollope

The Logans were an enchanting and admirable couple. Archie had snatched Liza from her own engagement party to someone else, wooed her, swept her off to his father in Scotland, and finally married her. Now bedded firmly into country life - three children, Archie the village doctor, Liza a teacher, everything comfortable, funny, affectionate - they awaited the arrival of Archie's father, the brilliant Sir Andrew Logan, a widower for over thirty years. When his city-clean Rover stopped in the drive, Sir Andrew was not alone. Beside him was a golden lady in caramel suede, a warm, witty, desirable widow whom everyone - except Archie - adored at once. Archie saw his father's mistress as the worm in the bud of his perfect life - a life that was to be wrenched apart before he and Liza could re-create their world.

A Village Affair

Joanna Trollope

The Grey House is the final piece in the jigsaw of Alice Jordan's perfect life. It seems to be the ultimate achievement of her outwardly happy marriage - a loyal, if dull husband, three children, two cars and now the house. So why does she feel as if something is missing?

As Alice and her family settle themselves into village life the something missing becomes something huge and then breaks, scandalizing the village, opening up old wounds. But because of it, Alice begins to feel that there is hope and humour and understanding and compassion in the new life she must build for herself.

Joanna Trollope

Biography

Joanna Trollope is the author of many highly acclaimed bestselling novels. She has also written a study of women in the British Empire, Britannia's Daughters, as well as a number of historical novels. 

Born in Gloucesterhire, she now lives in London. She was appointed OBE in the 1996 Queen's Birthday Honours List.