A Liverpool Girl

Written by Elizabeth Morton
Review by Julie Parker

This is a story of a Catholic Liverpool family in the 1950s, in particular the story of teenage girl Babby and her relationship with her mother, her two siblings and also the nuns who run the local convent school. Her father had been killed in a pub brawl two years before the start of the story in 1955, and the family has fallen on hard times, setting her mother to drink. As the relationship between mother and daughter gets more difficult the rebellious Babby is sent to Anglesey to help on a farm and be educated by the local nuns. There she meets and falls in love with the handsome Callum, but there is a secret that she must discover before the story is out.

The author, who has had a dual career as an actress and a writer, was born and lived in the Liverpool area, and the local descriptions are believable and full of nostalgia. As somebody who grew up in a sand dune village a few miles north of Liverpool, I can vouch for the true and realistic flavour that the writing imparts and the warmth in the descriptions of the characters. The novel, the writer’s first full length book, is billed on the blurb as being for fans of Call the Midwife on BBC television with its snapshot of family and community life after the war. It is also a recommended read, by me, for fans of the books of Helen Forrester beginning with the autobiographical Tuppence to Cross the Mersey and her later novels.