When My Ship Comes In
April 6th, 2017
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Keep the family together, that’s what her old mum always said. Put up and shut up. And that’s what everyone else did around there.
Essex, 1959. Flo earns her money as a scrubber, cleaning the cruise ships and dreaming of a day when she might sail away from her life in the Dwellings, the squalid tenements of Tilbury docks. Then the Blundell family are evicted from their home.
Fred, Flo’s husband, finds work at Monday’s, a utopian factory town. Suddenly, it seems like everything is on the up for Flo Blundell and her children. Even Jeanie, Flo’s sulking teenage daughter, seems to be thawing a little in her shiny new surroundings.
But when Flo’s abusive husband Fred starts drinking again, he jeopardises the family’s chance to escape poverty for good.
Flo is faced with a terrible decision. Must she fight to keep her family together? Or could she strive for the life of her dreams – the kind of life she could have when her ship comes in?
'Packed with drama, dark humour and shocking truths about life for working class women nearly 60 years ago, When My Ship Comes In is a compelling first novel, a gritty page-turner... Wilsher has produced a remarkable debut, a gritty, rollercoaster story of love and loss, hardship and hope, family and friendship and an eye-opening reality check for a new generation of women for whom such limited options in life are now, in the main, just a part of history. Her evocation of a past era, with its struggles and stresses, and her charismatic cast of assorted characters - from lovable Flo to her more complex daughter Jeanie - are beautifully portrayed and make this a must-read for all women's fiction fans, and for book clubs and discussion groups everywhere.' (Lancashire Evening Post)