Would you like to review Cesca Major’s debut novel, The Silent Hours? The story of a mute woman in 1952 looked after by nuns in southwest France has been described by author Wendy Wallace as: “Absorbing and – ultimately – horrifying. A gripping, fictional account of a real event in war-time France, told with a sensuous clarity. A haunting and illuminating debut novel.”
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The Silent Hours: The Book
A woman sits with no past and no future. She is being watched over by the nuns at Saint Cecilia in South West France. Mute ever since she turned up at their door in the weeks following the defeat of Germany. Her name is Adeline and she has a secret.
Sebastian, a young Jewish businessman living in Limoges has fallen in love with a local girl. But as the mood in the country darkens it seems their future is threatened.
Nine-year-old Tristin and his family are leaving Paris for the safety of the French countryside. They settle in a quiet village in the unoccupied zone where life appears unaffected by war.
Adeline and her family run the small shop on the high street. As the war progresses their stories become inextricably intertwined. And when an event rocks their peaceful village nothing will ever be the same…
Cesca’s first real writing success came in 2005 when she was runner up in the annual Daily Mail Writing Competition for the best opening paragraph to a novel. She has won or been placed in some prestigious short story competitions since then including the annual competitions for: Women and Home, Wells Festival of Literature, Grace Dieu and has also had short stories published in the Sentinel Champion and Sunday People Magazine.
After studying history at Bristol University Cesca went on to work as a TV presenter for four years on various pre-recorded and live shows. She taught history for seven years and became a housemistress at a secondary boarding school in Berkshire.
She has written regular reviews and features for the popular women’s fiction website Novelicious and now films weekly vlogs to help wannabe writers for the Writers and Artists website. She lives in Bradfield with her husband and their brood of ex-battery chickens. She’s prolific on Twitter (and very helpful too), follow her on @CescaWrites.
P.S. Cesca is speaking about writing and The Silent Hours at BritMums Live this year – don’t miss out!