A Hundred Tiny Threads by Judith Barrow

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I feel as if I’ve known Judith Barrow, author of A Hundred Tiny Threads, for ever as she has been such a supporter of Linda’s Book Bag since I started blogging. I was thrilled to interview Judith about her Pattern trilogy to which A Hundred Tiny Threads is the prequel. You can read that interview here. Consequently I’m delighted that I have finally been able to read one of Judith’s books and be part of the launch clebrations for A Hundred Tiny Threads with my review today.

A Hundred Tiny Threads was published on 17th August 2017 by Honno Press and is available for purchase here and directly from Honno.

A Hundred Tiny Threads

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It’s 1911 and Winifred Duffy is a determined young woman eager for new experiences, for a life beyond the grocer’s shop counter ruled over by her domineering mother.

The scars of Bill Howarth’s troubled childhood linger. The only light in his life comes from a chance encounter with Winifred, the girl he determines to make his wife.

Meeting her friend Honora’s silver-tongued brother turns Winifred’s heart upside down. But Honora and Conal disappear, after a suffrage rally turns into a riot, and abandoned Winifred has nowhere to turn but home.

The Great War intervenes, sending Bill abroad to be hardened in a furnace of carnage and loss. When he returns his dream is still of Winifred and the life they might have had… Back in Lancashire, worn down by work and the barbed comments of narrow-minded townsfolk, Winifred faces difficult choices in love and life.

My Review of A Hundred Tiny Threads

Winifred’s unhappy relationship with her mother will be just the start of her troubles.

My goodness what a super read A Hundred Tiny Threads is. There’s a cracking plot that is meticulously researched so that the setting and era are vivid and totally convincing, making reading this book a means to transport yourself into the past. There are so many elements that make A Hundred Tiny Threads not just an entertaining read, but a fascinating insight into social and political history in the early part of the twentieth century. I love it when I learn something new as I read and I certainly did here.

The quality of description is superb. There’s no shying away from the visceral, the violent and the mundane so that A Hundred Tiny Threads is a visual and auditory experience too. From the stench of the slums to the bloodshed of Suffragette demonstrations and the cacophony of the First World War battlefields I could picture everything in my mind’s eye.

Similarly, Judith Barrow’s characters are so well depicted. I found Bill especially complex and rounded. I didn’t much like his belligerent nature but I felt it was totally understandable and realistic.  When I wasn’t reading A Hundred Tiny Threads I wondered what the characters were getting up to without me! I think it’s the wonderful direct speech that helps to create such an impression of real people.

I really enjoyed this read and I have to confess it surprised me. I haven’t read Judith Barrow before and was expecting a good book that would hold my attention. A Hundred Tiny Threads was so much better than merely good – it’s excellent. I was totally immersed in the story and sorry when the book ended because I loved the mature exploration of what makes a marriage at the heart of the story, from violence and obsession to love and loyalty. I recommend A Hundred Tiny Threads wholeheartedly. It’s a brilliant book.

About Judith Barrow

judith Barrow

Judith Barrow grew up in a small village in Saddleworth, at the foot of the Pennines in North-West England, UK. In 1978 she moved with her husband, David, and their three children to Pembrokeshire in West Wales, where she is a creative writing tutor. Her short stories have been published in several Honno anthologies. Her first novel, Pattern of Shadows, published by Honno, is a wartime saga, set around the first German POW camp in Britain. The sequel, Changing Patterns was published in May 2013. The last of the trilogy is Living in the Shadows. The prequel to the Pattern series, A Hundred Tiny Threads, is now published. Judith also has an eBook, Silent Trauma that is fiction built on fact and based on the drug Diethylstilboestrol, which has caused devastating damage to unborn women.

You can follow Judith on Twitter @barrow_judith and find her on Facebook. Judith also has an excellent blog where you’ll find wonderful reviews and articles.

100 TT blog tour poster final

52 thoughts on “A Hundred Tiny Threads by Judith Barrow

  1. I ordered this last Monday and am anxious for it to arrive. Strange though, Amazon doesn’t give me a delivery, estimated, date and that hasn’t happened before. Yes, if I used ebooks I would already be devouring it. Alas, I am a paperback addict… The cover, which I rarely even notice, really sparked me. It gave me a story that I now have over twenty pages of… Thanks and yes, I have enjoyed your other books.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. It’s on my kindle. I’ve read and enjoyed Judith’s Patterns trilogy so I know I’ll enjoy this one. I’d also recommend Silent Trauma. I’d never heard of the drug before I read this.

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  3. Thanks Ali – it’s such a good read. And I know that feeling. I’m reading a book I fancied today because it’s short but I have so many coming up for blog tours that I can’t fit in others I’d like to make a staart on!

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Anne Williams says:

    I hadn’t managed to squeeze in the reading of the trilogy either Linda, and wondered how this would work as a stand alone. Plainly the answer is “magnificently”! I really must, mustn’t I?

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Mary, I’m honoured you like my work and do hope this one doesn’t disappoint. And so many thanks for mentioning Silent Trauma – a book and it’s background that mean so much to me after hearing so many sad life stories from the women it affected.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Ali, knowing how many books you read, your comments mean a lot to me. I do love the covers as well; all four books in the series are the same sepia colour and similar imagery. The publishers #honno and I worked together on them all; they knew just what I wanted. Thank you so much for taking the time to drop by.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. I’m so chuffed by Linda’s review, Abbie and thank you. When you do have time to read my books I do hope you enjoy them. Thank you for taking the time to read and comment; it’s so appreciated.

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  8. Hi Anne, it can stand alone. What I wanted to do was to show, that the lives we lead/ are dealt to us/ are given, make us , to some extent, what we become in later life. I hope I have done that with Winifred and Bill, They lived through such traumatic times it’s inevitable (especially with Bill) that they are what they are in Pattern of Shadows. Actually, when I’d finished the trilogy, they kept nagging for their story to be told. I’m very bad at saying “no” . lol. Thank you for being here today

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