Wendy and Her Year of Wonders

Wendy and Her Year of Wonders


The Ryan family have moved to Lancashire. Tom works for the railway and keeps bees, Pearl knits her bitterness into jumpers and socks, and Wendy is on a quest – she wants to find out where babies come from. But it is 1955 and this information is not available. She knows something big is going to happen to her soon, but what it will be is a mystery.

This is the Cherry Pink and Apple-Blossom White year, killers are hanged by the state, there is a General Election, and they hear tell of cinemas and theatres ripped up as Bill Haley Rocks Around the Clock. In Makerfield three boys are knifed to death and there is a plague of frogs which come up from the Moss.

Wendy skates on the icy flash, falls in and catches pneumonia. She pores over women ’s magazines for clues about babies, goes with Tashy to Mab’s stone, visits the seaside with Catty and her parents, is sexually approached by an adult family friend, and runs away to ride on freight wagons to Manchester with the most disreputable boy in the school.

At the end of the year the bees fly away, never to be seen again, the Ryans return to their home town, and Wendy discovers what she wants to know. 

ISBN: 9781852001339 

Size: 217x140mm 

Binding: hardback 

Length: 168pp

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About the author:

Carol Lake

Carol Lake won the Guardian Fiction Award for her first book Rosehill – Portraits from a Midlands City, and much acclaim for her second book Switchboard Operators, which subsequently became a television series by the same name. Both books were highly praised by critics and went on to become successful publications in hardback and paperback.

The author left school at 15, but went on to gain A-levels in English Literature and History. She has worked as a switchboard operator, run a secondhand bookshop and has been an assistant editor of a weekly news-sheet, as well as a typist, receptionist and nurse. More recently she has run a poetry class for juniors in the inner city of Derby. 

Apart from her novels she also writes occasional columns for various newspapers and magazines.