The Chilbury Ladies' Choir

The Chilbury Ladies' Choir

Book Title:
The Chilbury Ladies' Choir
Jennifer Ryan

Kent during the beginnings of WWII is nearly devoid of men. When choir mistress Prim decides to recreate the Chilbury Choir into the Chilbury Ladies Choir she shocks many of those around her. But that doesn't stop all the women from joining and creating a uniquely feminine sound. This epistolary novel is told through the letters and journals of several of the members of the choir. 

Mrs. Tilling is a quiet midwife who takes in a military lodger for the war effort. She learns to stand up for herself and others and becomes one of the strongest characters. Hers is my favorite of the stories. I enjoyed her investigations and her machinations. I especially loved her relationship with Colonel Mallard.

Mrs. Poultry is the other local midwife and involved in various schemes to get rich quick. Her methods are not the most honest or ethical, but she is a survivor.

Kitty Winthrop's diary reads like many 12 year old girls'. She is self-centered in the way teenagers are, but she also has a heart for those around her. She experiences her first broken heart. She also has her moment in the spotlight when she solos with the choir.

Venetia Winthrop is Kitty's older sister and a bit of a scandalous character. She is involved with a nefarious character in a torrid affair. Things fall apart for her when she learns she is pregnant and her beau disappears. She too must learn to stand up for herself and stand on her own. 

Sylvie is the Winthrop's refugee. She escaped the Nazi occupied Czechoslovakia but had to leave her family behind. She and Kitty have a lot of adventures as Sylvie learns to navigate a new country and a new family. 

This was a good listen. The audiobook included musical interludes when the choir performs. There were also different readers for the different characters which really made them stand apart.