A very good read about a young woman and her younger siblings who lost their parents unexpectedly, and as if this wasn't bad enough, Kitty then discovered that her parents were in debt, therefore leaving the family with almost nothing. Because of her love for her family she was determined to keep them together and although life for them was difficult at first, Kitty slowly managed to make a better life for them all. However she misses one of her brothers who chose to make a life of his own and although she hasn't heard from him she is planning to try to make an even better life for them in Australia. I am looking forward to reading the sequel and am wondering if she will ever be reunited with her brother and if she finds the young man she was in love with, who left for Australia some time before she did.
THIS NOVEL IS A GOOD HOLIDAY READ, IT'S A SERIES OF A FAMILY THAT STARTED OUT ON THE WEATHLY SIDE OF LIFE, ONLY TO FIND THEMSELVES IN THE SLUMS OF ENGLAND, THROUGH NO FAULT OF THEIR OWN. PLENTY OF UPS AND DOWNS, NOW ON A SHIP TO AUSSIE LAND, LOOKING FORWARD TO THE SEQUEL, MCKENZIE S LAND. I WOULD RECOMMEND THIS BOOK.
While I read Kitty Mc Kenzie I really cared about her and hoped her story would have a happy ending. Every twist and turn in the tale by Brear, a talented novelist, made it difficult to put the book aside. I wanted to keep on reading to find out what happened next, regardless of everything I had to do. In York, England in the year 1864, at her mother and father’s funeral, 21 year-old Kitty vows she will take care of her 6 brothers and sisters, whose ages range from 16 to 2 years. However, Kitty wonders who will take care of her. No longer do her family hold “an esteemed position in the community with money, handsome looks and good health.” After the McKenzie’s “once happy home” and its contents are sold to settle their parents’ debts, they are almost penniless. Kitty must find somewhere for them to live, and she and her two eldest brothers must find work. Kitty and her siblings are forced to live in the slums. There “…in the bowels of the city people lived and breathed poverty. Despair, depression and the threat of sickness and disease faced them every day of their lives.” In the dreadful cellar the only place which she could find to live in “Kitty looked around at what had become of her life. A damp, dirty cellar was all that stood between her and her family having a roof over their heads or being thrown out on the streets.” I admired Kitty, who found a job on a secondhand clothes stall in the market. She also made friends with Connie, a neighbour, and Connie’s husband good-hearted Max, who are always ready to help. From then on, bit by bit, Kitty forges ahead. She also meets Benjamin Kingsley, whose father wants him to go to Australia to start an import export business. She likes Benjamin who “didn’t play the high and mighty gentleman, pleasing Kitty immediately. It was becoming clear to her that Benjamin Kingsley was no ordinary man and she liked him very much.” But I wondered how much did he like her and what he wanted of her. Through all of the difficulties life threw at Kitty, she kept her pride and endured them, while her financial situation gradually improved. I hoped she would have a happy ever after life, but until I have read the sequel, Kitty McKenzie’s land, which I will review, I won’t know what her fate will be.