Books

The Woman in the Wood

Lesley Pearse

**PREORDER THE NEW NOVEL FROM LESLEY PEARSE NOW**


Fifteen-year-old twins Maisy and Duncan Mitcham have always had each other. Until the fateful day in the wood . . .

One night in 1960, the twins awake to find their father pulling their screaming mother from the house. She is to be committed to an asylum. It is, so their father insists, for her own good.

It's not long before they, too, are removed from their London home and sent to Nightingales - a large house deep in the New Forest countryside - to be watched over by their cold-hearted grandmother, Mrs Mitcham. Though they feel abandoned and unloved, at least here they have something they never had before - freedom.

The twins are left to their own devices, to explore, find new friends and first romances. That is until the day that Duncan doesn't come back for dinner. Nor does he return the next day. Or the one after that.

When the bodies of other young boys are discovered in the surrounding area the police appear to give up hope of finding Duncan alive. With Mrs Mitcham showing little interest in her grandson's disappearance, it is up to Maisy to discover the truth. And she knows just where to start. The woman who lives alone in the wood about whom so many rumours abound. A woman named Grace Deville.

The Woman in the Wood is a powerful, passionate and sinister tale of a young woman's courage, friendship and determination from one of the world's favourite storytellers.

Praise for Lesley Pearse

'Heart-warming and evocative, a real delight to read' Sun

'A narrative that gallops along, this is quintessential Pearse that will delight her army of readers' Daily Mail

'Glorious, heartwarming' Woman & Home

'Evocative, compelling, told from the heart' Sunday Express

Dead to Me

Lesley Pearse

**'Yet another great Lesley Pearse novel' Woman Magazine**

**'Full of love, passion and heartbreak' Best**

Two very different women, one unlikely friendship. In the chaos of war-torn Britain, can any relationship survive?

Dead to Me is a story about loyalty, love and the strength of friendship in the face of adversity, from international number one bestselling author Lesley Pearse.

Spring 1935.
On London's Hampstead Heath two girls meet by chance: well-mannered and smartly dressed Verity and dishevelled and grubby Ruby. Yet the mismatched pair form an instant friendship strong enough to survive their parent's disapproval.

When war engulfs the country - sending Ruby to Devon while Verity struggles to find a new beginning under a shadow from her past - the girls are convinced they will always be there for each other.

Until the day one breaks the other's heart . . .

Can Verity and Ruby find a way back to each other before it's too late?


Praise for Lesley Pearse

'Epic romantic drama set in post-war London' Heat Magazine

'A heart-warming and evocative tale that is a real delight to read' Sun

'A narrative that gallops along, this is quintessential Pearse that will delight her army of readers' Daily Mail

'Must have' Sunday Express

'Evocative, compelling, told from the heart' Sunday Express

'Utterly riveting, brilliant' Closer

'Glorious, heartwarming' Woman & Home

'This gripping tale of war and friendship is perfect for a long day of beach reading.' Marie Claire

Without a Trace

Lesley Pearse

International number one bestselling author Lesley Pearse brings a compelling story of courage, friendship and love in her brand new novel Without a Trace.

Coronation Day, 1953.
In the Somerset village of Sawbridge, young shopkeeper Molly Heywood slips away from the celebrations to her friend's cottage and makes a shocking discovery: Cassie is dead and her six-year-old daughter Petal has vanished without a trace . . .

In her grief, Molly seeks help from her childhood friend George, now the village policeman, but no one can find Petal. The only clue is a letter from London, where Cassie once lived. Despite George's reluctance and her growing feelings for him, Molly resolves to go to London in the hope of discovering the missing child.

Arriving in the big city, Molly quickly learns it's a dangerous place for a country girl on her own. But there's hope too - in the Blitz-ruined East End, she unexpectedly finds friendship with strangers from Cassie's past and, with handsome, mysterious workman Charley, the possibility of something more.

However, the closer Molly gets to the truth, the more perilous her journey becomes. She has given up everything - her home, happiness and a chance at love - all to find Petal. But is she also risking her life?

From the number one UK bestselling author Lesley Pearse comes Without a Trace, a gripping story of bravery, secrets and love.


Praise for Without a Trace
'Epic romantic drama set in post-war London' Heat Magazine
'A heart-warming and evocative tale that is a real delight to read' Sun
'A narrative that gallops along, this is quintessential Pearse that will delight her army of readers' Daily Mail
'Must have' Sunday Express
'Yet another great Lesley Pearse novel' Woman Magazine
Praise for Lesley Pearse
'Evocative, compelling, told from the heart' Sunday Express
'Utterly riveting, brilliant' Closer
'Full of love, passion and heartbreak' Best
'Glorious, heartwarming' Woman & Home

Survivor

Lesley Pearse

Lesley Pearse, No.1 bestselling author of The Promise and Belle is back with Survivor, the story of Mariette, a born fighter.

It is 1938 and headstrong eighteen-year-old Mari Carrera leaves a gossipy small town in rural New Zealand aboard the SS Rimutaka. Rather too careless with her reputation, Mari is bound for the bustling anonymity of London - but she is all too willing to be seduced by the temptations of the glittering West End.
Until war comes and snatches it all away.
As the Blitz rains death on London, Mari's life is blown apart. Lost and alone in the burning West End, she learns that to endure this war she must find the strength, selflessness and compassion locked within her.
And soon this born survivor must risk everything - putting her life on the line for others.

From internationally bestselling author, Lesley Pearse, Survivor is a story of bravery and love.

'Utterly riveting, brilliant' Closer
'Characters it is impossible not to care about' Daily Mail
'Full of love, passion and heartbreak' Best

Forgive Me

Lesley Pearse

Lesley Pearse, No. 1 UK bestselling author of Dead to Me and The Woman in the Wood, brings Forgive Me, a compelling story of a daughter uncovering her mother's secret past.

Eva Patterson's life is forever altered by the devastating discovery of her mother, Flora, dead in the bath leaving only a note: 'Forgive Me'.

Until Flora's suicide, Eva's world had been secure - but overnight everything changes. For when Flora leaves Eva a London artist's studio in her will, she finds her mother had a secret past.

In the studio's attic are Flora's paintings and diaries, and Eva learns her mother was a popular artist in the swinging sixties. Eva's hunt for answers uncovers clues to a shocking crime which led Flora to hide her past.

But will discovering the truth destroy Eva's belief in everything she holds dear? And will this journey lead her and those she loves into danger?

From the author of international bestseller, Stolen, Forgive Me is an intense and gripping story of love and forgiveness.

'Engrossing and emotional, it's another winner from Lesley Pearse' Woman's Own

'I absolutely loved this book. The characters are likeable and the writing is always brilliant' Sun

'Intriguing, heart-tugging, beautifully written' Closer

The Promise

Lesley Pearse

Lesley Pearse, No.1 bestselling author of Stolen and Belle, returns with the phenomenal novel The Promise. Heartbreaking, enduring and masterfully told, The Promise will take you on a breathtaking journey into the battlefields of the First World War.

War threatens to take all she has loved and lived for . . .

On the outbreak of war, Belle Reilly's husband Jimmy enlists and heads for the deadly trenches of northern France. But Belle knows she cannot stand idly by when so many are sacrificing their lives.

Volunteering to help battlefield wounded, Belle is posted to France as a Red Cross ambulance driver. There, a tragic accident brings her face to face with Etienne - a man from her past she's never quite forgotten.

Torn between forbidden passion, loyalty and love, Belle is caught in an impossible situation. Will she succumb to the dark forces of this most brutal of wars? Or will fate intervene and finally lead her to lasting happiness?

The Promise vividly describes life behind the front line and the tragic choices that war forces people to make.


'Pearse will pull your heartstrings' Sun

'Characters it is impossible not to care about' Daily Mail

'An addictive tear-jerker with characters you'll adore, laugh with and cry for' Bella

'Full of love, passion and heartbreak' Best

'Glorious, heartwarming' Woman & Home

Lesley Pearse's novels have sold five million copies worldwide. Her fourteen most recent books, including Belle, Stolen, Gypsy, Faith, Hope, A Lesser Evil, Secrets, Remember Me, Till We Meet Again, Father Unknown, Trust Me, Never Look Back, Charlie and Rosie, are huge bestsellers and available as Penguin paperbacks. Lesley lives near Bristol and has three daughters and two grandchildren. Find Lesley on Twitter @LesleyPearse or find out more on her website, www.lesleypearse.co.uk

Belle

Lesley Pearse

The international number one bestselling author tells the story of a strong woman trying to be good in a world gone bad, taking us from London to New Orleans and beyond in this powerful, moving historical novel.

She witnessed a murder - and now her life is in danger . . .

Fifteen year-old Belle, though raised in a London brothel, is an innocent. But when she witnesses one of the girls brutally strangled by a client, she is cast into a cruel, heartless world.

Snatched from the streets and sold into prostitution, she is made a courtesan in New Orleans. At the mercy of desperate men who crave her beauty and will do anything to keep her, Belle's dreams of home, family and freedom appear futile.

Are Belle's courage and spirit strong enough to help her escape? And what will await her at the end of the long, dangerous journey home?

Lesley Pearse, author of the UK and international best-sellers A Lesser Evil and Trust Me, takes her heroine from London to New Orleans and beyond in her powerful and moving historical novel Belle. Belle is a heroine of our times- a strong woman trying to be good in a world gone bad. Fans of Susan Lewis will love Lesley Pearse's style.

Praise for Lesley Pearse:
'With characters it is impossible not to care about ... this is storytelling at its very best' Daily Mail
'Lose yourself in this epic saga' Bella
'An emotional and moving epic you won't forget in a hurry' Woman's Weekly

Find Lesley on Twitter @LesleyPearse or find out more on her website, www.lesleypearse.co.uk

Tara

Lesley Pearse

In the East End, twelve-year-old Tara witnesses her villain of a father almost kill her mother. She forges a determination then and there to change her life.

This is the story of three beautiful and talented women. Mabel, whose great love for a gambling man has brought her close to insanity; gentle Amy, who marries a man brutalised by war and failure; and Tara, who is hungry for success and life on her own terms.

To have both, she must battle against the legacy these two women have left her, the deep prejudices and dangers of Whitechapel in the 1960s - with its gang leaders, rogues, market traders and dolly birds - and the passionate love she has had since girlhood for the charming wideboy and villain, Harry Collins.

Camellia

Lesley Pearse

Camellia Norton is orphaned at fifteen when her mother's body is fished from a river in rural Sussex. And when she discovers a cache of letters amongst her mother's effects she realises that the past she has always been so sure of has been built on a tissue of lies.

Devastated, she runs away to London, and loses herself in a metropolis that offers opportunity, temptation and danger, especially to a young girl hungry for love and acceptance.

But her past won't stay buried forever, and eventually Camellia begins the long journey towards uncovering the truth about her background, and also, ultimately, about herself.

Georgia

Lesley Pearse

When nine-year-old orphan Georgia James is unexpectedly fostered by the kindly Celia and her bank manager husband she can hardly believe her luck. But then - on her fifteenth birthday - she suffers the cruellest betrayal of all at the hands of her foster father and is forced to run away, leaving everything she loves behind her.

Penniless, sleeping rough, Georgia is soon introduced to the sleazy Soho world of brassy strippers, sweat shops, camaraderie and hardship. Fired by a fierce ambition, blessed with an extraordinary voice, her long struggle for fame and fortune begins. But even when she reaches the top she finds that the scars of the past can open up to ruin her...

Steeped in atmosphere and raw emotion, Georgia is the story of a determination to succeed against all the odds and of a burning first love.

Ellie

Lesley Pearse

Ellie is a sweet-natured brunette, generous of heart with a sparkling smile and an accent which reveals her East End background.

Bonny is beautiful and spoilt, with cascades of blonde hair, the brightest pair of blue eyes and a mouth like Cupid's bow.

The two girls meet in London at the end of the war when, seduced by two American airmen, they pool their wits and resources and set off to make a living on the stage. Set against the hardship and austerity of post-war Britain, and the glamour and ruthlessness of life in variety theatre, their story is one of sacrifice and burning ambition. But most of all of a powerful friendship that lasts against all odds.

Charity

Lesley Pearse

Charity Stratton's bleak childhood is changed for ever when both her parents are killed in a fire. Separated by the authorities from her younger brothers and sister, Charity is sent out to work as a skivvy in a boys' boarding school. Her loneliness and misery are eased when she falls deeply in love with the dashing but fickle sixth-former, Hugh Mainwaring, but when she discovers she is pregnant with Hugh's baby she soon realises just how alone she really is.

Determined to be reunited with her siblings and to make something of herself, Charity runs away to London and begins to forge a new life.

Stolen

Lesley Pearse

She's half-drowned, her memory lost . . . who is she? Shocking secrets will come out in the unputdownable Stolen . . .

This is just one of many thrilling novels from the international NO.1 BESTSELLING author Lesley Pearse.

A beautiful young woman is discovered half-drowned on a Sussex beach . . .

Where has she come from?

Why can't she remember who she is - or what happened?

She's wearing an old-fashioned dress and her hair has been hacked off. She's obviously been bound by the wrists and ankles. But without knowing her own name or who did this to her, she can't begin to piece together who she is and what led her to this unfamiliar place.

The police are baffled, but when the doctors examine her they make a shocking discovery: she has recently given birth.

Who on earth is she? And where is her baby?

Santa Montefiore and Penny Vincenzi fans will swiftly fall for Lesley Pearse's gripping novels - you'll want to read them again and again . . .

'With characters it is impossible not to care about ... this is storytelling at its very best' Daily Mail

'Lose yourself in this epic saga' Bella

'An emotional and moving epic you won't forget in a hurry' Woman's Weekly

Gypsy

Lesley Pearse

Gypsy is a compelling historical novel of survival from international number one bestselling author Lesley Pearse.

Tragedy sent her on a journey far from home . . .

Fifteen-year-old Beth's life is shattered when she and her brother Sam are orphaned. Believing that only in America can they make a fresh start, brother and sister leave Liverpool and embark on the greatest adventure of their lives.

In New York, Beth's talent with the fiddle earns her the friendship of gamblers, chancers and other rogues. Dodging trouble across America, Beth and her friends head for the Klondike river in search of gold.

How far must Beth go to find happiness? And will her travels lead this gypsy to a place she can ever call home?


Praise for Lesley Pearse:

'With characters it is impossible not to care about . . . this is storytelling at its very best' Daily Mail

'Lose yourself in this epic saga' Bella

'An emotional and moving epic you won't forget in a hurry' Woman's Weekly

Find Lesley on Twitter @LesleyPearse or find out more on her website, www.lesleypearse.co.uk.

Faith

Lesley Pearse

Scotland, 1995. On the hills of Cornton Vale Prison.

She was convicted of killing her best friend . . .

Laura Brannigan has been put away for murder. She insists that she didn't kill Jackie. But her search for true justice seems futile. Then she receives a letter that takes her back to her youth and the memory of an old love, Stuart . . .

Twenty years ago was a heady time for Laura: she'd escaped an abusive home, and together with Jackie they had made a fresh start. They had sworn to be sisters for ever.

What could have possibly gone so wrong? And why is Stuart writing to her now? Does he believe Laura's innocent and can he help free her from prison . . . and her past?

Lesley Pearse, the bestselling author of Dead to Me and Without a Trace, explores a web of thrilling secrets and injustices in the gripping novel Faith. Susan Lewis fans will love Lesley Pearse.


Praise for Lesley Pearse:
'With characters it is impossible not to care about ... this is storytelling at its very best' Daily Mail
'Lose yourself in this epic saga' Bella
'An emotional and moving epic you won't forget in a hurry' Woman's Weekly

Find Lesley on Twitter @LesleyPearse or find out more on her website, www.lesleypearse.co.uk.

Hope

Lesley Pearse

Hope is a gripping historical novel from the acclaimed Lesley Pearse.

Her existence would be the ruin of her mother . . .

Baby Hope, the unfortunate proof of Lady Harvey's adultery, is smuggled out of a privileged aristocratic household to a nearby village. There, her true identity a secret, she grows up in the arms of the poor, but loving, Renton family.

But the day comes when Hope must pay her way. What could be more natural than being taken into service by the Harveys? However when she sees something she should not, she is threatened and blackmailed into leaving her beloved Rentons forever.

Destitute on the streets of an unfriendly city, Hope's courage and kindness are recognized by a doctor. A talent for healing sees her taken on as nurse and destined for the horrific battlefields of the Crimea.

But will Hope ever come home and uncover the true story of her birth?

Hope by Lesley Pearse - author of bestsellers Gypsy and Remember Me - is a historical novel of past scandal and its consequences in a compelling nineteenth century setting. Fans of Susan Lewis will love the twists and turns of Lesley Pearse's work.

Praise for Lesley Pearse:
'With characters it is impossible not to care about ... this is storytelling at its very best' Daily Mail
'Lose yourself in this epic saga' Bella
'An emotional and moving epic you won't forget in a hurry' Woman's Weekly

Find Lesley on Twitter @LesleyPearse or find out more on her website, www.lesleypearse.co.uk.

A Lesser Evil

Lesley Pearse

A Lesser Evil is the thrilling novel from Lesley Pearse.

She defied her parents to marry for love . . .
Following her heart, Fifi moves with Dan to London where they rent a seedy flat in Dale Street, Kennington. Though Fifi must now become acquainted with squalor, she is soon drawn into the goings on behind the shabby front doors of her new neighbours.

But it is the Muckles, at number 11, who are the street's focus. Rumours of criminal depravity and shocking behaviour are rife. So when Fifi steps in to help their youngest child, she risks the wrath of this frightening family. Suddenly, not only her marriage and her family but the lives of all the inhabitants of Dale Street are at the mercy of the immoral Muckles . . .

Lesley Pearse, author of the hugely successful Till We Meet Again and Secrets explores love, life and morality in her thrilling novel A Lesser Evil. Susan lewis fans should take note of Lesley Pearse.

Praise for Lesley Pearse;
'With characters it is impossible not to care about ... this is storytelling at its very best' Daily Mail
'Lose yourself in this epic saga' Bella
'An emotional and moving epic you won't forget in a hurry' Woman's Weekly

Find Lesley on Twitter @LesleyPearse or find out more on her website, www.lesleypearse.co.uk.

Secrets

Lesley Pearse

It's 1930, and Secrets tells the tale of one girl caught in a family mystery, a struggle against cruelty, and a quest for love . . .

This is just one of many captivating novels from the international NO.1 BESTSELLING author Lesley Pearse.

Without her mother she is alone in the world . . .

Twelve-year-old Adele is placed in a bleak, cruel children's home after a family tragedy drives her mother to madness. But when trust is betrayed Adele has no choice but to run away . . .

Alone and friendless, she heads for Sussex, to seek out the grandmother she has never known. However the journey, without food or shelter, leaves her desperately ill. Surrounded by the beautiful Rye Marshes, Adele is nursed back to health.

Can she now dream of a new life? But what will happen when her mother reappears, bearing shocking family secrets?


Cathy Kelly and Josephine Cox fans will swiftly fall for Lesley Pearse's mesmerising novels - you'll want to read them again and again . . .

'With characters it is impossible not to care about . . . this is storytelling at its very best' Daily Mail

'Utterly riveting, brilliant' Closer

'Lose yourself in this epic saga' Bella

'An emotional and moving epic you won't forget in a hurry' Woman's Weekly

Remember Me

Lesley Pearse

Based on a true story, Remember Me brings Mary Broad vividly to life in this moving story of a woman triumphing against overwhelming odds.

She made one mistake, and now she'll never see home again . . .

Mary, a Cornish mariner's daughter, makes the biggest mistake of her short life when she steals a silk hat. Convicted and sentenced to be transported to Australia, she endures horrific conditions aboard ship before landing in a brutal and barbaric country.

It will take all her courage just to survive.

But Mary is also determined to make something of herself in this rugged man's world. And she dreams that one day she will find a way of crossing the cruel seas that lie between her and home . . .

Santa Montefiore and Penny Vincenzi fans will swiftly fall for Lesley Pearse's mesmerising novels - you'll want to read them again and again . . .

'With characters it is impossible not to care about . . . this is storytelling at its very best' Daily Mail

'An emotional and moving epic you won't forget in a hurry' Woman's Weekly

'Utterly riveting, brilliant' Closer

Till We Meet Again

Lesley Pearse

Would you stand by your childhood best friend if they turned out to be a murderer? Till We Meet Again is an unputdownable tale of love, passion, and heartbreak . . .

This is just one of many gripping novels from the international NO.1 BESTSELLING author Lesley Pearse.

She kills two people in cold blood - why?

Susan walks into a busy doctor's surgery and guns down two members of staff. Then she calmly waits for the police.

Beth is the lawyer assigned to defend Susan. But her client is uncooperative until both women realise that twenty-nine years earlier, they were childhood friends.

As the evidence against Susan mounts up, both she and Beth begin to talk about the secrets and the traumas that sent them down such different paths in life. Their friendship grows stronger.
But for one of them, there can be no happy ending . . .

Lesley Pearse, author of the UK and international best-sellers Belle and Hope, explores the limits of friendship with two of her most unforgettable characters in the thrilling Till We Meet Again. Fans of Susan Lewis will love Lesley Pearse novels.

Santa Montefiore and Penny Vincenzi fans will swiftly fall for Lesley Pearse's mesmerising novels - you'll want to read them again and again . . .

'With characters it is impossible not to care about ... this is storytelling at its very best' Daily Mail

'Lose yourself in this epic saga' Bella

'An emotional and moving epic you won't forget in a hurry' Woman's Weekly

Lesley Pearse

Biography

Lesley Pearse was born in Rochester, Kent, but has lived in the West Country for over thirty years. She has three daughters and two grandsons. She is the author of twenty novels and now writes full-time.