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A Single Thread

Tracy Chevalier
2019, 346 p.

Violet Speedwell suffered the loss of her fiancé and beloved brother in the First World War. In 1932, now in her late thirties, she is deemed a 'surplus woman', single and without prospects of marriage, and expected to care for her aging, impossible mother. Her job as a typist at an insurance firm is poorly paid and she struggles to cover the bare necessities of her sober existence. A Single Thread takes the reader through Violets trials, tribulations and successes in establishing her independence through striking out on her own, learning to embroider in a group dedicated to producing kneelers for her beloved Winchester Cathedral. The friendships she forms along the way broaden Violet's horizons, opening her heart and giving unexpected turns to her life story. A richly detailed portrayal of an independent single woman in a world that does its best to ignore their existence.


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