Cover Image: The Orchard Girls

The Orchard Girls

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Member Reviews

This was a brilliant read and is being featured on my blog for my quick star reviews feature, which I have created on my blog so I can catch up with all the books I have read and therefore review.
See www.chellsandbooks.wordpress.com.
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Violet Etherington's life is changed dramatically one night during the London blitz and she has to get away. With her Mother opposing her plans, she changes her name and joins the Women's Land Army. 
Life on Winterbourne Farm is hard but Violet and the other girls stick together.
In 2004, Frankie, who became estranged from the grandmother who raised her, finds herself back in her life again. Realising her Grandmother is losing her memory and in need of help, Frankie steps up to help her. As the past haunts Violet, Frankie decides to help her make peace with it once and for all.
While I really enjoyed the 1940 side of this book, I was less enthused about the 2004 part. It felt a bit disjointed for me.
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I loved this story and the dual timeline.  During wartime  Violet suffers a great tragedy and decides to do her 'bit' and join the Land Girls.   There is lots of hard work and the overseer is a cruel bully. The girls stick together though and prove that "girl power" can work.

Jump forward 60 years and meet Violet's granddaughter  Frankie, who has her own battles to fight but is working hard as a journalist and has to learn to stand up for herself and her principles. 

It is a brilliantly written book with lots of accurate research about the Land Girls during wartime.    

Thankyou Net Galley
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Firstly, what a beautiful cover for this book. The colours of the sky, the two girls - I would pick this one off the shelf instantly. Secondly, what a fantastic story. Land girls seem to get such a glitzy reputation but it was war - surely there must have been a downside too? Well, there was, and The Orchard Girls spills all. I really love dual timeline books, and this story follows Frankie and her Grandmother - one in 2004 London and the other in 1940 Somerset. It was easy to get immersed in both stories, and I loved seeing how they tied together. I couldn't have predicted the ending, and that's my favourite kind of book to read. I would be thrilled to read another Scott novel anytime!
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Frankie was always very close to her grandmother Violet,  until 10 years ago when they stopped speaking. Now in a new top journalist's  job at the Post, and under pressure to perform, her new boss Hugo is demanding that she writes an article about her grandmother's time as a land girl during WW2.
The story flits between the modern day and 1940, between Violet's time with the land girls and Frankie's struggles in the modern day.
I loved the story overall- the two timelines work well revealing different parts of the plot. The characters are well written- becoming real in the readers imagination- warm, well-rounded and interesting people. The story is thoroughly engaging as you are drawn into the lives of the young land girls and the challenges they face working in the 1940s man's world.. Overall, a fab story- the writer has clearly researched this era thoroughly- I loved this book!
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Nikola Scott writes wonderfully interwoven dual timeline novels, and this one had me gripped from the first page. The Orchard Girls looks at Frankie and her grandmother Violet in 2004, and looks back to wartime when Violet ran away, changed her name to hide herself from her socialite mother, and became a land girl.

I loved the intrepid nature of Frankie, although wished she didn’t allow herself to be pushed around in her journalistic endeavours, whilst trying to look after Violet, after a decade of estrangement. I felt that the storyline featuring Violet in 2004, when she was clearly experiencing the decline of her memory was written with sensitivity, and was a storyline I could really identify with as I have had family members with dementia.

I loved the storyline set during the war, and felt that it had been researched in depth. The Women’s Land Army ‘land girls’ in general worked very hard, considering the disparaging way many of the locals treated them, and the group of girls in this story were no exception, judged simply because they were land girls. I think this was something I found surprising but then thinking back to every characterisation of land girls on tv that I have seen has shown them in this light, with perhaps looser morals than ‘good girls’.

I loved the way in which the story slowly unfurled to identify what secret was still being hidden in 2004. The descriptions of life in the Land Army were so vivid I felt like I was there with them and it all came to life for me.

There were some dark themes within this story, although they were handled with delicacy. The characters were vibrant and felt very real, which really helped the flow of this compelling story. I particularly loved the character of Marigold. This was such a vibrant story of friendship, and unity in the most extreme of circumstances, and how love and friendship can endure the worst of times, as well as triumphing in the best of times.
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"The Orchard Girls" is a novel with duel timelines.  One character, Violet, survives the Blitz and personal tragedy during the fall of 1940, while Violet's granddaughter, Frankie, is living during October 2004. Nicola Scott handles these different timelines with a smooth deftness that works well. It is easy for the reader to jump back and forth between 1940 and 2004. Without giving away any specific plot points, "The Orchard Girls" is a novel  with well-defined interesting characters, who held my attention. The plotting was tight, characterizations were done well, and there was just enough mystery to keep me turning pages in rapid succession. This is the first Nicola Scott novel that I have read, but I will will definitely look for her previous novel. I appreciate the author, publisher, and NatGalley having provided me with this ARC of "The Orchard Girls."
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1 enjoyed this book although the references to dementia made me feel a little uncomfortable as having close relatives suffer with this disease brought it all back.  But, i loved the rest of this story very much. My thanks to netgalley and the publishers for giving me the opportunity to read this book in return for an honest review.
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Nikola Scott is a relatively new author, her books have been on my ‘must read’ list for a long time, but alas this is the first of her books I have read. I am at a loss as to why it has taken me so long to finally read this author, her writing is so beautiful and enriching, I love the way she meticulously entwines the two eras which creates a poignant and sweeping tale of loss and love.

I found it very easy to fall under the spell of The Orchard Girls, its gentle pacing pulled me into the story from the first page. I have always loved time-slip novels, which is one of the reason’s I was very eager to read this and with it partly set during WW2 this sounded like my kind of book and I am so happy to say that The Orchard Girls did not disappoint.

The Orchard Girls is told across two timelines with Violet in the 1940s and Frankie in the present day, I love the way that both women are connected and how each of their stories is told, the way that each era interlinks with the other is so clever and beautifully done. Some duel timeline novels can feel a little jumbled but this one is perfectly written you just fall into the story and the lives of these two amazing women.

The story opens in the 1940s during the London Blitz, we follow Violet who yearns to do something worthy and help the war effort – plus to escape her dragonish mother so she joins the Women’s Land Army, but as her family is very well known she joins under a false name as Lily. I love the description of how hard life was as a Land Girl, it wasn’t the easiest way to help the war effort plus not to mention the way the villagers treat them which I thought was awful – these young women are doing something to help and they get treated in such a hostile way. As Violet makes friends with her fellow Land Army girls something happens and they are all left holding on to a terrible secret. Now, I’m not going to divulge that as it is crucial to both parts of the story.

Present-day Violet granddaughter Frankie is a journalist whose editor has got wind of a story that has got Frankie on the job, she must infiltrate her grandmother mind and retrieve the shocking truth of her past, a job which is harder said than done as Violet has locked away her past never to be remembered again. Violet has become a reclusive shutting herself away, there is a lot of questions over Violet’s state of mind, and there are fractions between the two woman. Frankie’s intruding behaviours was very hard to read, I found her hard to warm to at first, I know she was only trying to do her job but still. Once you learn her own story and the factors behind her relationship with her grandmother she soon becomes very endearing.

This isn’t the typical historical fiction, there are lots of underlying themes which run side by side to the story for example dementia which I found very emotional to read, especially as we lost my grandmother to this awful decease, but Nikola Scott has written those moments with the utmost sensitivity and care.

Overall The Orchard Girls is a highly emotional and engaging read, which will leave its mark upon your heart well after closing the last page. Well worth a read for any who loves historical fiction and duel timelines.
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4.5 Stars

Emotional, evocative and enthralling, The Orchard Girls is a beautifully written and expertly crafted tale by Nikola Scott.

Frankie’s life hasn’t always been easy. She has known her fair share of heartache and despair, but she always believed that the grandmother who had brought her up was always in her corner and always had her best interests at heart. Frankie believed that her grandmother had loved her – until she had betrayed her in the most cruel and shocking of ways. With the rift between them seeming irreparable, Frankie never thought she would clap eyes on her grandmother ever again – until their paths cross again and she realises that the woman who raised her is slowly losing her memory. Frankie finds herself drawn into the mystery of her grandmother’s past and she realises that old secrets and past sins could very well end up having a devastating effect on her future as well…

In 1940, Violet’s life had been completely and utterly destroyed by the Blitz. Running away from her all consuming grief, Violet joins the Women’s Land Army where she hopes that the hard work and back-breaking labour will help her forget the pain and misery that continues to haunt her. The land girls at Winterbourne Orchards have certainly got a lot on their plate. With the lingering shadows of the enemy air raids hanging over them, nobody knows what the future holds. But it’s not just Hitler’s bombs they have to fear, but a powerful enemy who is far too close to home.

When all their worst fears come to light, shocking events unfold that will bind them together forever. Nobody must ever find out what the land girls at Winterbourne Orchards went through during that fateful night and their secret must stay hidden till the end of time.

A captivating dual narrative novel from a master storyteller, The Orchard Girls is a splendidly woven tale where the pages will just turn themselves. The Orchard Girls is a story about hope, strength, resilience and love that tugs at the heartstrings and immerses the reader in a vividly recreated world of danger, secrets and deception.

Nikola Scott is such a wonderful writer and in The Orchard Girls she has written an unforgettable novel readers will be blown away by.
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I do love a dual timeline read and this one doesn’t disappoint. Violet and her granddaughter Frankie haven’t seen each other for years when their paths cross again. Frankie, now a journalist, feels that her grandmother Violet is troubled by something that happened in her earlier life. Wanting to protect her, as well as to help her, Frankie encourages Violet to confront her past life as a land army girl. An emotional, engrossing read sprinkled with historical facts. A definite recommendation.
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I just love dual timelines in books. I think these are my favourite kind of reads so I was thrilled when I saw the blurb and I couldnt wait to read it. Frankie, in the present timeline, didnt have the best of starts in life. Her grandmother Violet, has joined the Land Army during the 1940s. 

I loved the two main characters, although I was drawn more to Violet but have led difficult lives. I really enjoyed this book. If you enjoy reading about the war, relationships and finding lost family secrets then this is the perfect book for you.
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This was a very good read and very well written. A war years saga always pulls at the heart strings and this is the same even though this is a dual time book.. 4 stars.

Thanks to Netgalley and publisher for this e ARC
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I am a sucker for dual timeline. And the author did such a Great Job writing It. This book contains a lot of my buzzword.  Love, betrayal, forgiveness, ww2 era., strong friendships and strong Main characters.  I loved It. Thank you to netgalley for letting me read this e arc in exchange for an honest opinion
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London 2004: Frankie didn' always have it easy. Growing up motherless, she was raised by her grandmother, who loved her - and betrayed her. For yeaars the rift between them seemed irrepairable. 

Somerset 1940: When seventeen year old Violet's life is ripped apart by the London Blitz, she runs away and joins the Women@s Land Army. She wants nothing more than to leave her grief behind. But as well as the terror of the enemy air raids, the land girls at Winterbourne Orchards face a powerful enemy closer to home.

I quite like a dual timeline story and this one didn't disappoint. I loved both Frankie and Violet, they were both strong characters. Frankie has a new job ae The London Post. Violet had joined the Woman's Lamd Army and worked at Winterbourne Orchards. Full of intrigue and historical information. The dual timeline is woven seamlessly together. It was hard to ead at times due to the dementiqaa Violet had. I really enjoyed this book. but I think I prefered the part set in 1940 just a little bit more.

I would like to thank #NetGalley #Headline and the author #NikolaScott for my ARC of #TheOrchardGirls in exchange for an honestreview.
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Two strong women decades apart yet bound together.  it is a dual timeline story about the story of a group of Women's Land Army girls.  Well written with vivid descriptions.  Highly recommended.  Thanks to NetGalley for this ARC.
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Its no secret I am a HUGE fan of dual time stories, and am always searching for the next one to fill the hole the previous book left behind. I can tell you that this book was wonderful and fit the bill perfectly. It had everything that I love in a dual time story: romance, secrets, drama, WWII, history, and, of course a betrayal that echoes through time. This book was well-researched and the author did a wonderful job at bringing WWII era to life. The characters were relatable and I enjoyed both the historical and the present time parts. The secret kept this novel moving at a steady pace, and kept me turning the pages well into the night - a sign of a great book. I highly recommend you add this book to your shelf - you won't be sorry!
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Thanks to the publisher and Netgalley for an early review copy. 

Set in 1940 and 2004. The story follows Violet during WWII and Frankie in 2004. Both Violet and Frankie’s characters were stunning and as such their stories were strong, in  different ways.

The relationship between her grandmother and Frankie was loveable, but not an easy one, having lots of problems, about which we learn, which helped you understand the reasons why Frankie does, and why. Their connection and story felt more true and real.  

You could relate to Frankie, having witnessed what her grandmother went through, having had her as an important part of her childhood.. 

The way in which the storylines connected was really good, and made me curious, wanting to find out more. I wanted to find out about the secrets and what the characters from the past were like, what did they endure during the war.

I loved he way the story was written and it flowed, both timelines connecting together and I couldn’t put it down. From the beginning I wanted to know how it was going to end. 

Highly Recommend It
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Violet comes from an upper class family. War has just begun and Violet wants to do her bit but her mother wants to marry her off and for her to live the life of a lady. At a dance she escapes to have fun with her two cousins when a tragedy happens. Violet really has to get away so she changes her name and joins the land army only leaving a note behind for her mother.

In the farm where she is sent the manager is absolutely abhorrent and the girls are never paid and given no free time. As she makes friends with the other girls they just have to stick together to make the best of it.
Violets granddaughter Frankie is a journalist working for a well known newspaper. She has been estranged from her grandmother for years but eventually meets up when her editor finds out who her grandmother is and demands that Frankie interview her for the newspaper..

This is a really good read. I didn't know that at the start of WW2 land girls were not welcome on farms. The farm owners did not think they could ever replace men and were not happy at the government telling them they had to employ and pay these woman.  They were often treated badly and only given the minimal requirement of  food and a place to sleep. The locals also turned against the women thinking that because most of them came from bigger towns and cities that they were fast and loose and after any men that were about. 
I don't know if the newspaper Frankie worked for reflects what that job is like but it was so high pressured and full of people who would stab you in the back. Horrible place to work.
The comradely between all the women who worked on the farm enabled them to get through each day  and put up with their dreadful boss. Frankie didn't have that with the newspaper as she didn't know who to trust. 
Frankie realises that her grandmother is unwell and tries  to do her best to help and decides that re uniting her with her land army friends is the right thing to do. She doesn't know that she is opening Pandora's Box and will find it hard to believe what she finds inside.
Good story, great characters and lots of surprises along the way.
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The Orchard Girls is a detailed well thought out story that captures the reader's attention and holds it until the last page....
I like how Scott has created an awareness of dementia and given the reader a well researched insight into the difficulty and change face by women in WW2!
The character development of The Orchard Girls is good. The characters are interesting and realistic. I felt a strong connection with Frankie and Violet. I could clearly see that both women were struggling emotionally. and was please with the ending...
I would recommend reading The Orchard Girls to lovers of Historical Fiction, as it is an engaging story filled with anger and self-loathing but also shows powerful friendships and a true sense of family!
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