Thursday, April 2, 2020

THE WORLD WAR II FICTION LIST


Those who have followed this blog for a while will recall that back in 2015 I created a "World War II Book List". It was a list of WWII-themed books mostly by women who qualified for my master list. It was divided into six thematic sections: 1) Diaries/Memoirs, 2) Fiction: The Approach of War and Early Days, 3) Fiction: The Thick of It, 4) Fiction: The Immediate Postwar, 5) Fiction: Retrospective (post-1950), 6) Other Non-fiction.

I managed to update the list once, in May of 2016, since which time it has languished, in part because its format made it a pain to revise. Since I have done lots more research in those four years—including quite a lot in preparation for the WWII-themed Furrowed Middlebrow titles from Dean Street Press last year—I had lots and lots of new titles to add. But I just couldn't face that format. In addition to logistics, it was a wee bit clunky conceptually, since although everyone who reads a lot of WWII fiction will recognize the distinction between the cheerful, gung-ho tone of most "early days" novels and the more fatigued tone of novels from the "thick of it", it was sometimes challenging to determine where lesser-known titles belonged. Likewise, it always bothered me that the works of an author like Angela Thirkell or D. E. Stevenson, for example, were split across three or even four sections of the list.

So, the old list is done with, finished, finito! (Well, not really, it's here if you really want to refer back to it, but it is outdated and will not be updated.) It is being replaced with this list, dedicated to fiction, and another soon-to-be-posted list of non-fiction.

This time, the list is in alphabetical order by author, then chron order for each author's works. I've kept the categories, highlighted after each title, but I've tweaked them to simply Approach, Wartime, Postwar, and Retrospective. (As before, "Postwar" indicates a title published in the few years right after the war and including details of postwar conditions, while "Retrospective" indicates a work set in wartime or the immediate postwar but published significantly later, with all the shifts in perspective that that passage of time tends to entail.) A soon-to-follow World War II Non-Fiction List will encompass the diaries, memoirs, and miscellaneous non-fiction that were included on the original list. A fair number of new additions on that portion as well.

I think this makes the list more useful and orderly, and it certainly makes it easier to edit. Hopefully, it also makes it easier for readers to see if a book they've come across is included or not, so please don't hesitate to drop me an email or comment below if you find a title you think belongs here…

There's a whole slew of new additions to the list. I hope you enjoy perusing!

UPDATED 4/23/2020 (thanks to all those who made suggestions!)



RUTH ADAM, War on Saturday Week (1937) APPROACH
Though written before WWII actually began, follows a group of siblings from childhood during World War I to the outbreak of World War II.

RUTH ADAM, There Needs No Ghost (1939) APPROACH
Humorously contrasts the reactions of villagers and Bloomsburyites to the Munich Crisis. Reviewed here.

RUTH ADAM, Murder in the Home Guard (1942) WARTIME
Mystery set during the Blitz, full of interesting details and perspectives on the war. Reviewed here.

RUTH ADAM, A House in the Country (1957) POSTWAR
Just after the war, a group of friends try living in a run-down manor house in Kent, with mixed results. Reviewed here.

MABEL ESTHER ALLAN, Time to Go Back (1972) RETROSPECTIVE
Tale of a young girl in Liverpool who travels back in time to witness her mother and aunt’s tragic wartime past.

MABEL ESTHER ALLAN, Tomorrow Is a Lovely Day (1979) RETROSPECTIVE
Teenage girl, orphaned in the Blitz, recovers in the English countryside.

MABEL ESTHER ALLAN, A Strange Enchantment (1981) RETROSPECTIVE
Sixteen-year-old girl joins the Land Army.

ROSE ALLATINI, Family from Vienna (1941) APPROACH
Set during and after the Anschluss among an assimilated Jewish family in London who take in refugee relatives from Austria.

ROSE ALLATINI, Destination Unknown (1942) WARTIME
Deals with a large Jewish family in London, some of whom are refugees now working as domestic helpers.

ROSE ALLATINI, Blue Danube (1943) WARTIME
Traces a Jewish family over several generations, ending in London during World War II.

MARGERY ALLINGHAM, Traitor's Purse (1941) WARTIME
Campion novel set during the phony war; part mystery, part wartime spy thriller.

MARGERY ALLINGHAM, Coroner's Pidgin (1945) WARTIME
Campion tracking art thieves during the war, while Lugg keeps a pig in a bomb shelter as his war work.

MARGERY ALLINGHAM, The Tiger in the Smoke (1952) POSTWAR
Campion in the London underworld of the immediate postwar years.

LUCILLA ANDREWS, One Night in London (1979) RETROSPECTIVE
LUCILLA ANDREWS, After a Famous Victory (1984) RETROSPECTIVE
LUCILLA ANDREWS, The Phoenix Syndrome (1987) RETROSPECTIVE
LUCILLA ANDREWS, Frontline 1940 (1990) RETROSPECTIVE
Pressured to remove wartime themes from her early novels, romance novelist Andrews returned to the war in these late works. Her powerful memoir No Time for Romance provides her real-life experiences.

MARJORIE APPLETON, Anything Can Happen (1942) WARTIME
Novel about a domestic servant conscripted into work in a munitions factory.

HELEN ASHTON, Tadpole Hall (1941) WARTIME
The story of "gentle, retiring Colonel Heron and his home, Tadpole Hall, the leisurely tradition they both represent and the incursions which war brings."

HELEN ASHTON, Joanna at Littlefold (1942) WARTIME
Two women left alone by the war make their way in a country town in England during the Blitz. Published in the U.S. as Joanna. Reviewed here.

HELEN ASHTON, Yeoman's Hospital (1944) WARTIME
Entertaining melodrama set at a village hospital during wartime.

HELEN ASHTON, The Captain Comes Home (1947) POSTWAR
A man missing in the war and presumed dead suddenly appears and is charged with assaulting his wife's new husband.

HELEN ASHTON, The Half-Crown House (1956) POSTWAR
Very much a novel about a house, with lush details of its past and present, it's also a novel about the scars the war has left behind. Reviewed here.

BERYL BAINBRIDGE, The Dressmaker (1973) RETROSPECTIVE
Set in Liverpool during the war, this novel focuses on a young woman living with her two aunts.

DOROTHY BAKER, Coast Town Tapestry (1946) WARTIME
Described in a blurb as "a novel with a wartime background."

KITTY BARNE, Visitors from London (1940) WARTIME
Barne's most famous work, about evacuees on a Sussex farm. Reviewed here.

KITTY BARNE, We'll Meet in England (1942) WARTIME
Wartime adventure about two children from Norway escaping to England by boat.

KITTY BARNE, While the Music Lasted (1943) WARTIME
Sequel to Barne's She Shall Have Music (1938), which follows her heroine through her musical studies and into romance. Set late 1930s into the war. Reviewed here.

KITTY BARNE, Enter Two Musicians (1944) WARTIME
Set in the world of music in the thick of World War II.

KITTY BARNE, Three and a Pigeon (1944) WARTIME
Children's adventure featuring two bombed out children staying in a country home.

KITTY BARNE, Musical Honours (1947) POSTWAR
Family tale about musical children just after the end of the war; their father returns home from being a prisoner of war. Reviewed here.

MABEL BARNES-GRUNDY, Paying Pests (1941) WARTIME
MABEL BARNES-GRUNDY, The Two Miss Speckles (1946) WARTIME
Wartime novels by humorous novelist. The second deals with two sisters in Bath who take in lodgers as their war work.

ANNE BARRETT, The Journey of Johnny Rew (1954) POSTWAR
Set in Dorset, children's tale of a boy orphaned in the Blitz searching for his parents' origins.

NINA BAWDEN, Carrie's War (1973) RETROSPECTIVE
Acclaimed children’s book about the evacuation of a young girl and her brother to a Welsh village during World War II and the effect their stay has on her later life.

BARBARA BEAUCHAMP, Wine of Honour (1946) POSTWAR
Set immediately after the end of the war, details both men and women returning from service and adjusting to postwar life. Reviewed here, and reprinted as a Furrowed Middlebrow book from Dean Street Press.

HELEN BEAUCLERK, So Frail a Thing (1940) WARTIME
HELEN BEAUCLERK, Shadows on the Wall (1941) WARTIME
HELEN BEAUCLERK, Where the Treasure Is (1944) WARTIME
According to Contemporary Authors, these novels "depict the lives of men and women as they intertwine during World War II."

JOSEPHINE BELL, Martin Croft (1941) WARTIME
About a man wounded in World War I for whom Dunkirk is a healing experience.

JOSEPHINE BELL, Trouble at Wrekin Farm (1942) WARTIME
Mystery novel rife with Home Guard concerns, fifth columnists, and other wartime atmosphere.

JOSEPHINE BELL, Death at the Medical Board (1944) WARTIME
Mystery about the sudden death of a young woman as she's about to sign up for the women's services.

JOSEPHINE BELL, Total War at Haverington (1947) WARTIME
An English town adjusting to wartime conditions.

MARY HAYLEY BELL, Men in Shadow (1942) WARTIME
Hit play focused on the French Resistance.

MARGOT BENARY-ISBERT, The Ark (1953) POSTWAR
MARGOT BENARY-ISBERT, Rowan Farm (1954) POSTWAR
Children's titles set in Germany immediately after the end of WWII—by a German-American author, but of interest for this list.

ELIZABETH BERRIDGE, Tell It to a Stranger (1947, aka Selected Stories) WARTIME
Powerful collection of stories, including several set during the Blitz.

EMERY BONETT, High Pavement (1944) WARTIME
Mystery novel with a touch of romance, set in an English village in wartime. Published in the U.S. as Old Mrs Camelot.

MARY BORDEN, Passport for a Girl (1939) APPROACH
Described as "a perceptive account of English attitudes to the rise of Nazism."

ANNE BOSTON, Wave Me Goodbye: Stories of the Second World War (1988) WARTIME
Anthology of wartime stories by women.

PHYLLIS BOTTOME, The Mortal Storm (1937) APPROACH
Novel warning about the rise of the Nazis; made into a Hollywood propaganda piece in 1940.

PHYLLIS BOTTOME, London Pride (1941) WARTIME
A poor family, their young son, and a neighbor girl dodging bombs and wrestling with issues of poverty, evacuation, and looting.

PHYLLIS BOTTOME, Within the Cup (1943, aka Survival) WARTIME
Also focused on the Blitz, and on an Austrian refugee psychiatrist.

PHYLLIS BOTTOME, The Life-Line (1946) APPROACH
Set in Austria in 1938.

ELIZABETH BOWEN, The Heat of the Day (1948) WARTIME
Considered a classic of "Blitz lit," one critic called it a Graham Greene thriller filtered through the sensibility of Virginia Woolf.

ELIZABETH BOWEN, Collected Stories (1980) WARTIME
Includes all of Bowen's wartime stories, including several of her most famous.

DOROTHY BOWERS, Shadows Before (1939) APPROACH
Mystery novel set as war is looming.

DOROTHY BOWERS, Deed Without a Name (1940) WARTIME
Mystery novel set in the midst of the Phony War.

DOROTHY BOWERS, Fear and Miss Betony (1941) WARTIME
Beautifully-written, melancholy mystery set in a girls' boarding school evacuated to Dorset.

CHRISTIANNA BRAND, Heads You Lose (1942) WARTIME
Mystery set in a snowed-in country house during the war, but apparently making relatively little use of its wartime setting.

CHRISTIANNA BRAND, Green for Danger (1942) WARTIME
Brand's most famous mystery, set in a hospital during World War II and thick with the atmosphere of bombings and blackout.

CHRISTIANNA BRAND, Suddenly at His Residence (1946, aka The Crooked Wreath) WARTIME
Though published after the war, this mystery makes effective use of bombs and late war years fatigue.

CHRISTIANNA BRAND (as Mary Roland), The Single Pilgrim (1946) WARTIME
Suggested to Brand by the Ministry of Health, a novel about a woman who gets syphilis as a result of an affair with a pilot.

CHRISTIANNA BRAND, Death of Jezebel (1948) POSTWAR
Mystery novel which evokes the postwar feel of London just after the war.

ANGELA BRAZIL, The Mystery of the Moated Grange (1942) WARTIME
ANGELA BRAZIL, The Secret of the Border Castle (1943) WARTIME
Late Brazil tales, both set in evacuated schools.

ELINOR M. BRENT-DYER, The Chalet School in Exile (1940) WARTIME
Deals with the Chalet girls' encounters with Nazis and the school's escape from Austria to Guernsey. A fan favorite in the Chalet School series.

ELINOR M. BRENT-DYER, The Chalet School Goes to It (1941) WARTIME
The Chalet girls must again escape, this time to Wales, as the Nazis sieze control of Guernsey.

ELINOR M. BRENT-DYER, The Highland Twins at the Chalet School (1942) WARTIME
ELINOR M. BRENT-DYER, Lavender Laughs in the Chalet School (1943) WARTIME
ELINOR M. BRENT-DYER, Gay From China at the Chalet School (1944) WARTIME
ELINOR M. BRENT-DYER, Jo to the Rescue (1945) WARTIME
Additional wartime entries in the Chalet School series, all with a backdrop of war.

ANN BRIDGE, A Place to Stand (1953) RETROSPECTIVE
ANN BRIDGE, The Tightening String (1962) RETROSPECTIVE
Popular novelist’s tales of Hungary in wartime.

VERA BRITTAIN, Account Rendered (1945) WARTIME
Pacifist novel dealing with a shell-shocked doctor on trial for murder.

CAROL BROOKE, Light and Shade (1947) WARTIME
Romantic novel set during the war.

DORITA FAIRLIE BRUCE, Dimsie Carries On (1941) WARTIME
DORITA FAIRLIE BRUCE, Toby at Tibbs Cross (1943) WARTIME
DORITA FAIRLIE BRUCE, Nancy Calls the Tune (1944) WARTIME
Wartime entries for each of Bruce's three popular girls' series characters.

KATE MARY BRUCE, Figures in Black-Out (1941) WARTIME
Novel set partly during World War II.

BRYHER, Beowulf (1956) RETROSPECTIVE
Powerful “blitz lit” novel detailing the experiences of two women running a tea shop under harsh wartime constraints.

KATHARINE BURDEKIN, Swastika Night (1937) APPROACH
Dystopian novel set after centuries of Nazi and Japanese rule of the world.

HESTER BURTON, In Spite of All Terror (1968) RETROSPECTIVE
Children’s novel set during wartime and featuring scenes of evacuation, bombings, and the Dunkirk evacuation.

MARGARET BUTCHER, Vacant Possession (1940) WARTIME
Novel about the effects of the beginning of the war on a neighborhood near the Fulham road.

DIANA BUTTENSHAW, Journey to Venice (1949) POSTWAR
Young Englishwoman, having made a disastrous marriage to an Italian prisoner of war and then leaving him, explores the beauty and the scars of war as she travels across Italy.

ALICE CAMPBELL, Ringed with Fire (1943) WARTIME
Murder mystery set during the Blitz.

SARAH CAMPION, Thirty Million Gas Masks (1937) APPROACH
Described as "a Near Future tale predictive of the coming catastrophe."

JOANNA CANNAN, Death at the Dog (1939) WARTIME
Mystery set in the earliest days of the war. Reviewed here.

ELIZABETH CARFRAE, The Lonely Road (1942) WARTIME
Elizabeth Maslen: "the debate between pacifism and commitment to war are at the core of the romance."

ELIZABETH CARFRAE, Penny Wise (1945) WARTIME
Wartime romance from popular author.

ELIZABETH CARFRAE, Good Morning, Miss Morrison (1948) WARTIME
Romantic novel about a teacher in a girls' school and her choice between "a steady-Eddie type and a glamorous fighter pilot during wartime."

VIOLA CASTANG, Mrs Clements (1947) POSTWAR
Novelist just out of the ATS relocates to an English village.

ROMILLY CAVAN, Beneath the Visiting Moon (1940) APPROACH
Delightful comedy of family and village life and of approaching war getting in the way of romance. Reviewed here. Available as a Furrowed Middlebrow reprint.

HESTER W. CHAPMAN, Long Division (1943) WARTIME
About an unhappily-married woman who starts a prep school during the war years.

BRIDGET CHETWYND, Sleeping and Waking (1944) WARTIME
Odd novel in which chapters alternate between adults' sophisticated chatter and a child's vivid dreams.

BRIDGET CHETWYND, Death Has Ten Thousand Doors (1951) POSTWAR
BRIDGET CHETWYND, Rubies, Emeralds and Diamonds (1952) POSTWAR
Two mystery novels featuring Petunia Best, an ex-WAAF who teams up with a former intelligence officer to form a detective agency.

AGATHA CHRISTIE, N or M (1941) WARTIME
Christie's one wartime mystery actually set during the war—Tommy and Tuppence track an undercover German agent.

AGATHA CHRISTIE, Absent in the Spring (1944) WARTIME
One of Christie's Mary Westmacott novels, set in the Middle East as a woman reflects on her life while waiting for a train. The war remains firmly in the background.

AGATHA CHRISTIE, Taken at the Flood (1948) POSTWAR
The one Poirot novel to (briefly) feature the war; in the opening, we see Poirot, in flashback, experiencing an air raid while at his club.

EILEEN HELEN CLEMENTS, Cherry Harvest (1943) WARTIME
Mystery novel set on a crumbling country estate to which a girls' school has been evacuated. Reviewed here.

EILEEN HELEN CLEMENTS, Berry Green (1945) WARTIME
A thriller set in an English village, in which a visiting actor might be a German spy.

EILEEN HELEN CLEMENTS, Weathercock (1949) POSTWAR
Clements' series detective and his wife return to the home they had lent to refugees during the war, to find a "library book with interesting sketches inside."

MARJORIE CLEVES, A School Goes to Scotland (1944) WARTIME
Presumably this girls' school story deals with a school evacuated to Scotland?

DOROTHY CLEWES, The Blossom on the Bough (1944) WARTIME
Though the bulk of the story is told in flashback, the present day portion takes place late in the war, when a middle-aged woman considers buying back her family home, triggering memories of her earlier life.

JOAN COCKIN, Curiosity Killed the Cat (1947) POSTWAR
Mystery set in a Cotswold village just after World War II, having to do with the Ministry of Scientific Research, which was set up there in wartime but has lingered into peacetime.

JOAN COGGIN, The Mystery at Orchard House (1946) APPROACH
Humorous Lady Lupin mystery set at a country hotel in Kent on the cusp of the war.

JOAN COGGIN, Penelope Passes, or Why Did She Die? (1946) POSTWAR
Coggin went directly from pre-war, in The Mystery at Orchard House, to the immediate postwar in this Lady Lupin mystery.

JOAN COGGIN, Dancing With Death (1947) POSTWAR
Final Lady Lupin mystery, set in the years of postwar austerity.

MARGARET COLE (w. G. D. H. Cole), Murder at the Munition Works (1940)
Mystery presumably set in the early days of the war.

MARGARET COLE (w. G. D. H. Cole), Toper's End (1942) WARTIME
Far-fetched (and reportedly anti-Semitic) thriller about murder among a team of scientists.

BARBARA COMYNS, Mr. Fox (1987) RETROSPECTIVE
Set during the war and based on Comyns' own life after the breakup of her first marriage.

MABEL CONSTANDUROS, So They Were Married (1942) WARTIME
Wartime family drama from a prominent actress and playwright.

LETTICE COOPER, Black Bethlehem (1947) WARTIME
Three novellas, two about the war—one featuring an injured war hero adapting to home life, the other about a woman who takes in a shady refugee.

LETTICE COOPER, Fenny (1953) RETROSPECTIVE
Set before and after the war in Florence, which follows a young girl from her arrival in Italy as a governess through turbulent events both personal and political.

SUSAN COOPER, Dawn of Fear (1970) RETROSPECTIVE
Tale of three boys' adventures living just outside of London during the Blitz.

MARCH COST (as Margaret Morrison) & PAMELA TULK-HART, Paid to Be Safe (1942) WARTIME
Focused on women in the Air Transport Auxiliary, whose "lives turn out to be an odd blend of strenuous activity, flying jargon, bridge hands and romance."

GWENDOLINE COURTNEY, The Denehurst Secret Service (1940) WARTIME
GWENDOLINE COURTNEY, Well Done Denehurst (1941) WARTIME
Popular girls' author's adventure tales involving German spies.

GWENDOLINE COURTNEY, Sally's Family (1946) POSTWAR
Charming novel about a young girl trying to make a home for her five orphaned siblings, who have been evacuated to different families during the war and have developed very different personalities. Reviewed here.

FRANCES CRANE, The Yellow Violet (1942) WARTIME
Humorous American mystery set in San Francisco in the early days of World War II.

FANNY CRADOCK, Castle Rising series (1975-1985) RETROSPECTIVE
Eccentric chef and novelist’s popular series tracing a family’s fortunes, including the war years.

RICHMAL CROMPTON, Mrs. Frensham Describes a Circle (1942) WARTIME
Entertaining tale of a woman who, having lost her husband, re-engages with life by involving herself in the affairs of others. Reviewed here.

RICHMAL CROMPTON, William at War WARTIME
Compilation of several of William's wartime misadventures.

PRIMROSE CUMMING, Silver Eagle Carries On (1940) WARTIME
A family-run riding school struggles with wartime limitations.

PRIMROSE CUMMING, Owls Castle Farm (1942) WARTIME
Based on Cumming's own experiences as a Land Girl.

MORAY DALTON, The Art School Murders (1943) WARTIME
MORAY DALTON, Death at the Villa (1946) WARTIME
Mystery novels set in wartime.

CLEMENCE DANE, The Arrogant History of White Ben (1939) APPROACH
Allegorical novel about the rise of Hitler and the Nazis.

SHIRLEY DARBYSHIRE, Distant Music (1942) WARTIME
Novel of family life in wartime.

SHIRLEY DARBYSHIRE, City Without Sentinel (1944) WARTIME
Tale of a young woman adapting to life outside of London and to the guests the war brings to her door.

THERESA DE KERPELY (writing as Teresa Kay), A Crown of Ashes (1952) RETROSPECTIVE
Novel based on her wartime experiences living in Budapest, published pseudonymously to protect family members still living in Hungary.

ELISABETH DE WAAL, The Exiles Return (2013) POSTWAR
Written much earlier but only published by Persephone in 2013. Set in 1954, tells of three Austrians returning home after years away.

E. M. DELAFIELD, The Provincial Lady in Wartime (1940) WARTIME
Follows Delafield's beloved title character into the early days of the war.

E. M. DELAFIELD, No One Now Will Know (1941) APPROACH
Begins on the cusp of the war but then flashes back to the 1870s.

E. M. DELAFIELD, Late and Soon (1943) WARTIME
Deals with a widow taking in evacuees.

JOYCE DENNYS, Henrietta’s War (1985) WARTIME
Hilarious fictionalized letters about home front life, first published in Sketch magazine during World War II.

JOYCE DENNYS, Henrietta Sees It Through (1986) WARTIME
More of Dennys's fictionalized letters from Sketch magazine.

ALEXANDRA DICK, How Can We Sing? (1942) WARTIME
Tale set among refugee Poles in Sweden.

MONICA DICKENS, Mariana (1940) WARTIME
Heroine recalls her early life as she waits to hear of her husband's fate after his ship has been sunk.

MONICA DICKENS, The Fancy (1943) WARTIME
Makes use of Dickens' experiences working in a wartime factory.

MONICA DICKENS, The Happy Prisoner (1946) POSTWAR
Deals with a wounded soldier trying to adapt to life after war.

OLIVE DOUGAN, The Schoolgirl Refugee (1940) WARTIME
OLIVE DOUGAN, Schoolgirls in Peril (1944) WARTIME
Wartime school stories

ANNE DUFFIELD, A Bevy of Maids (1941, aka Volunteer Nurse) WARTIME
Novel focused on a women's ambulance unit in the African Desert.

MARY DUNSTAN, Banners in Bavaria (1939) APPROACH
Dealing with a "typical" German family on the brink of the war; praised for its "extraordinarily impressive picture of Munich on the night of the Anschluss celebrations."

MARY DUNSTAN, What Comes After (1950) POSTWAR
Unmarried woman back in Scotland after the ATS and estranged from her family adjusts to postwar life.

JOSEPHINE ELDER, Strangers at the Farm School (1940) WARTIME
The last of Elder's Farm School trilogy; the strangers of the title are Jewish refugees escaping from Hitler. Reviewed here.

JOSEPHINE ELDER, The Encircled Heart (1951) APPROACH, WARTIME
A woman doctor's challenges and triumphs in the 1930s and 1940s, including World War II, written from the author's personal knowledge.

JOSEPHINE ELDER, Doctor's Children (1954) POSTWAR
Focuses on an abandoned wife and mother who revives her career as a doctor in the years just after the war, when the National Health Service is just beginning. Reviewed here.

JANICE ELLIOTT, A State of Peace (1971) RETROSPECTIVE
Set just after WWII. Young woman adjusts to the anticlimax of postwar life.

JANICE ELLIOTT, Secret Places (1981) RETROSPECTIVE
Set in WWII girls' school, about a girl's friendship with a war refugee.

SUSAN ERTZ, Anger in the Sky (1943) WARTIME
Blitz novel critiqued by Saturday Review as "a little unduly hopeful about the good effects which will result from the war."

CONSTANCE M. EVANS, Enter—A Land Girl (1944) WARTIME
CONSTANCE M. EVANS (as MAIRI O'NAIR), Judy Ashbane, Police Decoy (1944) WARTIME
CONSTANCE M. EVANS (as MAIRI O'NAIR), Storm Over Sandham Park (1944) WARTIME
CONSTANCE M. EVANS (as MAIRI O'NAIR), Four Steps Upwards (1945) WARTIME
Popular romance author's wartime tales, some including mystery/thriller elements.

KATHLEEN EYLES (as CATHERINE TENNANT), Major Road Ahead (1942) WARTIME
"The story of an up-to-date girl and her men friends before and during the war."

GWENDOLEN FEATHERSTONHAUGH, Caroline's First Term (1947) WARTIME
Girls' school story making fun use of wartime cliches, including a science mistress who may be a Nazi spy.

MONICA FELTON, To All the Living (1945) WARTIME
Novel dealing with wartime factory life in England.

RACHEL FERGUSON, A Footman for the Peacock (1940) WARTIME
Vivid, hilarious, and distinctly unusual portrait of a terrible family determined not to face wartime hardships. Reviewed here. Available as a Furrowed Middlebrow reprint.

RACHEL FERGUSON, The Late Widow Twankey (1943) WARTIME
Even odder than Ferguson's norm; set during wartime in an English village apparently possessed by the characters of pantomime. Reviewed here.

RACHEL FERGUSON, Sea Front (1954) RETROSPECTIVE
Traces, in Ferguson's eccentric fashion, life in a seaside resort town before, during, and after WWII.

RUBY FERGUSON, The Moment of Truth (1944) WARTIME
About a young girl before and during WWII.

RUBY FERGUSON, Our Dreaming Done (1946) POSTWAR
Romantic melodrama about a war widow feeling smothered by life with her upper-crust in-laws.

RUBY FERGUSON, The Wakeful Guest (1962) RETROSPECTIVE
Rather uninspired mystery/melodrama focused on a superficial young woman’s encounters with refugees of war.

ELIZABETH FERRARS, I, Said the Fly (1945) WARTIME
Mystery set in London just before and at the very end of World War II.

ELIZABETH FERRARS, Murder Among Friends (1946, aka Cheat the Hangman) WARTIME
Mystery set during the war.

KATHERINE FIELD, Disappearance of a Niece (1941) WARTIME
KATHERINE FIELD, The Two-Five to Mardon (1942) WARTIME
Wartime mystery novels featuring some overlap of characters.

KATHERINE FIELD, Murder to Follow (1944) WARTIME
Mystery novel set in 1939, beginning with the disappearance of a baby during the chaos of early evacuations.

ANN FIELDING, The Mayfair Squatters (1945) WARTIME
Empty house in wartime London is occupied by a disparate group of squatters.

PENELOPE FITZGERALD, Human Voices (1980) RETROSPECTIVE
Set at Broadcasting House in London during WWII.

HELEN FOLEY, A Handful of Time (1961) RETROSPECTIVE
A Book Society Choice that deals with two women, one British and one Austrian, from immediately before WWII until "its confused aftermath," set mostly at or in Cambridge, with occasional scenes in Austria.

CAROL FORREST, The House of Simon (1942) WARTIME
An intriguing wartime tale of abandoned children making their own home.

HELEN FORRESTER, Three Women of Liverpool (1984) RETROSPECTIVE
Set in Liverpool in 1941, based on Forrester's own youth during the war.

PAMELA FRANKAU, Shaken in the Wind (1948) POSTWAR
Traces an ATS officer's experiences of demobilisation and her relationship with an American officer.

PAMELA FRANKAU, The Willow Cabin (1949) APPROACH, WARTIME, POSTWAR
With sections set before, during, and after the war, Frankau's lovely novely set in and around the theatre qualifies for three categories of this list.

ELIZABETH FRAYNE, Life Goes On (1941) WARTIME
Follows the four young Brooke sisters into wartime adventures.

SARAH GAINHAM, Night Falls on the City (1967) RETROSPECTIVE
SARAH GAINHAM, A Place in the Country (1968) RETROSPECTIVE
SARAH GAINHAM, Private Worlds (1971) RETROSPECTIVE
A trilogy. Night Falls was a bestseller and BOMC selection, set in Vienna during the war. The less acclaimed sequels are set, respectively, soon after the war has ended and in the early 1950s.

DIANA GARDNER, A Woman Novelist and Other Stories (2006) WARTIME
Story collection including "The Land Girl," about a girl from the Women's Land Army who breaks up her hosts' marriage. Published by Persephone.

CATHERINE GAVIN, Traitors' Gate (1976) RETROSPECTIVE
CATHERINE GAVIN, None Dare Call It Treason (1978) RETROSPECTIVE
CATHERINE GAVIN, How Sleep the Brave (1980) RETROSPECTIVE
Historical novelist’s popular trilogy set in wartime Britain.

STELLA GIBBONS, The Rich House (1941) WARTIME
Follows several young, mismatched couples and an anonymous letter-writer just on the cusp of the war.

STELLA GIBBONS, The Bachelor (1944) WARTIME
One of Gibbons' darker novels, featuring an unpalatable refugee girl disrupting a family's comfortable home life.

STELLA GIBBONS, Westwood (1946) WARTIME
My favorite Gibbons, making beautiful use of its setting in London circa 1943-1944. Bombed out buildings and an air of fatigue powerfully evoke the late years of the war.

STELLA GIBBONS, The Matchmaker (1949) POSTWAR
Set immediately after the war, the heroine is still living with her children in the house to which they were evacuated, and waiting for her husband to return from Germany.

CONSTANCE GODDARD, Come Wind, Come Weather (1945) WARTIME
About farm life in wartime.

CONSTANCE GODDARD, Three at Cherry-Go-Gay (1949) WARTIME
Another wartime story, this one about evacuees in Devonshire.

RUMER GODDEN, An Episode of Sparrows (1955) POSTWAR
Powerful tale of children in the postwar, making powerful use of the bombed-out buildings of London.

ELIZABETH GOUDGE, The Castle on the Hill (1942) WARTIME
Goudge's surprisingly complex exploration of good and evil in a wartime setting.

ELIZABETH GOUDGE, Pilgrims' Inn (1948, aka The Herb of Grace) POSTWAR
Second volume of the Eliots trilogy, set immediately after the end of the war.

FRANCES GRAY, B.U.N.C. (1938) APPROACH
Satire of industrial war profiteering, with an eye on the coming war.

FRANCES GRAY, Period Piece (1942) WARTIME
Gray's second and final novel, a satire of immoral upper crust "parasites", presumably (but not certainly) set in the early days of the war.

ELIZABETH M. HARLAND, Farmer's Girl (1942) WARTIME
ELIZABETH M. HARLAND, Two Ears of Corn (1943) WARTIME
ELIZABETH M. HARLAND, Well Fare the Plough (1946) WARTIME
ELIZABETH M. HARLAND, A Path Is There (1948) POSTWAR
Novels about farm life during and immediately after the war, apparently based on Harland's own experiences.

FRANCES HARRIS, June to September (1941) APPROACH
Set in rural France among Brits and French locals as war approaches.

MARY K. HARRIS, Gretel at St. Bride's (1941) WARTIME
Girls' school story featuring a student who is a refugee from the Nazis.

MARGARET HASSETT, Beezer's End (1949) WARTIME
Sequel to Hassett's prewar novel Educating Elizabeth, set in a girls' boarding school during the war.

CAROLYN HAYWOOD, Primrose Day (1942) WARTIME
From the American author of the Betsy series, the adventures of an English girl evacuated to the U.S.

IRENE HEATH, Good Luck and Goodbye (1945) WARTIME
An English mother and her two children make their way back to England from their evacuation in the tropics on a merchant steamer.

ANNE HEPPLE, The North Wind Blows (1941) WARTIME
Young woman with wrong identity papers hides out as a Land Girl.

MARJORIE HESSELL TILTMAN, Mrs Morel (1942) POSTWAR
Village life before and during the war.

MARJORIE HESSELL TILTMAN, Born a Woman (1951) POSTWAR
Traces the stories of several women in Japan in the aftermath of World War II.

HILDA HEWETT, Kaleidoscope (1947) WARTIME
Tale of a young schoolteacher, taken in by a mother and her three daughters, who escape flying bombs to an idyllic village in Worcestershire.

KATHLEEN HEWITT, Lady Gone Astray (1941) WARTIME
Thriller about a young heiress who develops amnesia after being attacked in the blackout, and copes with shady refugees.

KATHLEEN HEWITT, The Mice Are Not Amused (1942) WARTIME
Energetic tale of a legal secretary who takes a job as head porter at an apartment building infested with fifth columnists.

KATHLEEN HEWITT, Plenty Under the Counter (1943) WARTIME
Novel about the wartime black market.

DIANA MURRAY HILL, Ladies May Now Leave Their Machines (1944) WARTIME
Novel about women factory workers in World War II.

LORNA HILL, Northern Lights (1999) WARTIME
One of Hill's Marjorie stories; when she published them after the war, this one was refused because of it's wartime themes, and was only finally published in recent years.

INEZ HOLDEN, Night Shift (1941) WARTIME
A powerful episodic portrayal of life in a wartime aircraft factory.

INEZ HOLDEN, There's No Story There (1944) WARTIME
Rather bleak but interesting tale set in a vast ordnance factory, where a snowstorm strands workers for a night.

INEZ HOLDEN, To the Boating (1945) WARTIME
Story collection featuring several tales of wartime life.

NORAH HOULT, Scene for Death (1943) WARTIME
A sort of experimental reinvention of the murder mystery, set in an English village during the thick of the war.

NORAH HOULT, There Were No Windows (1944) WARTIME
Brilliant novel of an elderly woman battling dementia during the Blitz.

NORAH HOULT, House Under Mars (1946) WARTIME
Dark but powerful portrait of boarding-house life in the late years of the war.

ELIZABETH JANE HOWARD, The Light Years (1990) RETROSPECTIVE
ELIZABETH JANE HOWARD, Marking Time (1991) RETROSPECTIVE
ELIZABETH JANE HOWARD, Confusion (1993) RETROSPECTIVE
ELIZABETH JANE HOWARD, Casting Off (1995) RETROSPECTIVE
ELIZABETH JANE HOWARD, All Change (2013) RETROSPECTIVE
Howard’s Cazalet Chronicles, her best known and most popular works, which detail a family's experiences in wartime England.

MARJORIE HUXTABLE, Cherry Tree (1940) WARTIME
Romantic tale of an unhappily married woman widowed soon after the beginning of World War II, who goes on to find new romance.

MARGARET ILES, Nobody's Darlings (1942) WARTIME
The effects of war and the arrival of evacuated children on a slightly rowdy country village.

NORAH C. JAMES, The Gentlewoman (1940) WARTIME
Family drama set in London just before and after war begins.

NORAH C. JAMES, The Hunted Heart (1942) WARTIME
Drama about the head of a department store and his wife, who enters into an affair with a young soldier.

NORAH C. JAMES, Enduring Adventure (1944) WARTIME
Recommended by Grant Hurlock as an entertaining example of "blitz lit."

STORM JAMESON, In the Second Year (1936) APPROACH
Dystopian novel about a Fascist takeover of England.

STORM JAMESON, Cousin Honoré (1940) APPROACH
Novel which attempts to examine the causes of the war via the microcosm of a village in Alsace.

STORM JAMESON, Europe to Let: The Memoirs of an Obscure Man (1940) APPROACH
A collection of novellas about the rise of Fascism.

STORM JAMESON, The Fort (1941) WARTIME
Uses the form of a Greek drama in a tale of French and English soldiers trapped in a cellar as the Nazis approach.

STORM JAMESON, Then We Shall Hear Singing: A Fantasy in C Major (1942) WARTIME
Described by Elizabeth Maslen as "a poignant fable addressing the Czech tragedy."

STORM JAMESON, Cloudless May (1943) WARTIME
Novel dealing with the capitulation of France.

STORM JAMESON, The Journal of Mary Hervey Russell (1945) WARTIME
Somewhat autobiographical fictionalized diary, often considered among Jameson's best work.

STORM JAMESON, The Green Man (1952) RETROSPECTIVE
An epic war novel and bestseller, tracing nearly two decades of the leadup to the war and the war itself.

PAMELA HANSFORD JOHNSON, Winter Quarters (1943) WARTIME
Focuses on an army battery stationed in a small English village.

PAMELA HANSFORD JOHNSON, An Avenue of Stone (1947) WARTIME
Set in the late war period of flying bombs and in the immediate aftermath of the war.

PAMELA HANSFORD JOHNSON, The Survival of the Fittest (1968) RETROSPECTIVE
Novel tracing a group of friends through the war years.

MARJORIE SCOTT JOHNSTON, The Ghost in Galoshes (1941) WARTIME
In the early days of the war, a young woman works her way through work in journalism, publishing, and the BBC.

JOSEPHINE KAMM, Nettles to My Head (1939) APPROACH
Follows a young Jewish woman from boarding school into adulthood as war looms in the immediate future. Reviewed here.

JOSEPHINE KAMM, Peace, Perfect Peace (1947) POSTWAR
Wonderfully detailed novel of postwar life, focused particularly on women coping with the transition to peactime. Reviewed here, and available as a Furrowed Middlebrow reprint.

BARBARA KAYE, Home Fires Burning (1943) WARTIME
Details are lacking, but presumably a wartime tale.

BARBARA KAYE, Black Market Green (1950) POSTWAR
Details lacking here too, but I'm guessing from the title that it belongs on this list.

MARGARET KENNEDY, The Feast (1950) POSTWAR
One of Kennedy’s best novels, about a doomed hotel and its residents, which makes vivid use of postwar conditions. Reviewed here.

SUSAN ALICE KERBY, Miss Carter and the Ifrit (1945) WARTIME
A middle-aged spinster wrestling with the deprivations of the late war years encounters a genie who helps her rediscover the pleasures of life. Reviewed here. Available as a Furrowed Middlebrow reprint.

JESSIE KESSON, Another Time, Another Place (1983) RETROSPECTIVE
A group of Italian POWs disrupt life in an isolated Scottish village.

FLORENCE KILPATRICK, Elizabeth in Wartime (1942) WARTIME
Wartime entry in her humorous series of Elizabeth books.

DOROTHY LAMBERT, Staying Put (1941) WARTIME
DOROTHY LAMBERT, Birds on the Wing (1943) WARTIME
Interrelated, humorous tales of home front life in an English village.

MARGARET LANE, Where Helen Lies (1944) WARTIME
Romantic melodrama set against the backdrop of the home front.

JOY LANGTON, Pro Tem (1945) WARTIME
Ad blurb: "An engrossing study of several sets of people from widely different spheres who are thrown together during the London Blitz."

DOROTHY M. LARGE, The Quiet Place (1941) WARTIME
Set in an Irish mansion turned boarding-house for those evacuating themselves from wartime dangers in England.

MARGHANITA LASKI, Love on the Supertax (1944) WARTIME
Enjoyable light tale of class, romance, and the black market.

MARGHANITA LASKI, To Bed with Grand Music (1946) WARTIME
Originally published pseudonymously, a darker tale of a young wife whose husband is serving abroad, whose boredom leads her into a series of affairs.

MARGHANITA LASKI, Tory Heaven (1948, aka Toasted English) POSTWAR
Rollicking satire of the class system, about a group of castaways rescued after the war, who find the old class distinctions now codified as law.

MARGHANITA LASKI, Little Boy Lost (1949) POSTWAR
Novel about a father searching for his missing son in France immediately after the war.

MARGHANITA LASKI, The Village (1952) POSTWAR
Wonderful novel about the aftermath of the war's breakdown of class relations, in the form of two families reluctantly united by marriage.

D. L. LEACH, Cleveland View (1944) APPROACH
Novel set in Yorkshire in the days before and just after the beginning of the war.

WINIFRED LEAR, The Causeway (1948) WARTIME
Tragicomic tale of life in and around a rectory from the approach of war to the early days of the Blitz. Reviewed here.

MOLLY LEFEBURE, Blitz! (1988) RETROSPECTIVE
The one novel by the author of Evidence for the Crown (1954), a memoir of working in the London morgue during WWII, dramatized a few years ago as Murder on the Home Front.

ROSAMOND LEHMANN, The Gypsy's Baby and Other Stories (1946) WARTIME
Collection in which the war figures prominently in several stories.

ROSAMOND LEHMANN, The Echoing Grove (1953) POSTWAR
Elegant novel of the postwar, including flashbacks to the Blitz and wartime conditions.

DORIS LESLIE, House in the Dust (1942) WARTIME
Novel mostly told in flashback to earlier years, but the framing sections take place during the Blitz.

LORNA LEWIS, Tea and Hot Bombs (1943) WARTIME
Brilliantly detailed tale of a young girl's experiences driving a mobile canteen in London during the Blitz. Reviewed here.

LORNA LEWIS, Feud in the Factory (1944) WARTIME
Young girl orphaned by a bomb fights back against Hitler by working in a factory.

MARJORIE LIVINGSTONE, Moloch (1942) WARTIME
Observer ad: "A Novel of the war as seen from both the physical and astral planes…"

PHYLLIS LIVINGSTONE, In Our Metropolis (1940) WARTIME
Cheerful novel of a young couple in London during the Phony War.

NORA LLOYD, The Young Liberators (1949) WARTIME
Children's title about "an Anglo-French family's wartime exploits in the Savoy Alps.

ALICE LUNT, Tomorrow the Harvest (1955) RETROSPECTIVE
ALICE LUNT, Eileen of Redstone Farm (1964) RETROSPECTIVE
Children’s stories based on Lunt’s own experiences in the Women's Land Army during World War II.

MARY LUTYENS, Family Colouring (1940) APPROACH
MARY LUTYENS, Together and Alone (1942) WARTIME
MARY LUTYENS, And Now There Is You (1942) POSTWAR
Wartime dramas from a popular romantic novelist.

DOROTHY MACARDLE, The Seed Was Kind (1944) WARTIME
Troubled young girl working with Czech refugees during the Blitz.

ROSE MACAULAY, "Miss Anstruther's Letters" WARTIME
Story based on Macaulay's own experience of being bombed out and her loss of a life's collection of letters, books and papers.

ROSE MACAULAY, The World My Wilderness (1950) POSTWAR
Lovely story of Barbary, a young girl who spent her youth with the Maquis (French resistance guerillas) in occupied France and must now adapt to normal life among the ruins of London. Reviewed here.

JEAN MACGIBBON (as Jean Howard), When the Weather's Changing (1945) WARTIME
Impressionistic account of farmer's wife's summer, which John Bayley called "a pioneering book, which assimilated, with great originality, a number of fictional genres—memoir, reportage, stream of consciousness."

HELEN MACINNES, Above Suspicion (1941) WARTIME
HELEN MACINNES, Assignment in Brittany (1942) WARTIME
HELEN MACINNES, While Still We Live (1944) WARTIME
HELEN MACINNES, Horizon (1945) WARTIME
Spy novels and thrillers, all with wartime settings.

AVERIL MACKENZIE-GRIEVE, Sacrifice to Mars (1940) WARTIME
Publisher's blurb: "Novel of Nazi Germany from the inside!"

AVERIL MACKENZIE-GRIEVE, A Gibbet for Myself (1941) APPROACH
Novel of the rise of fascism in Italy, set just before to rise of Mussolini.

CATHERINE MACDONALD MACLEAN, Seven for Cordelia (1941) WARTIME
CATHERINE MACDONALD MACLEAN, Three for Cordelia (1943, aka The Tharrus Three) WARTIME
CATHERINE MACDONALD MACLEAN, Farewell to Tharrus (1944) WARTIME
Rather sentimental tales of Glasgow evacuees on a farm in the Highlands.

ETHEL MANNIN, The Dark Forest (1945) WARTIME
Pacifist author's look at "a tragedy born of fraternisation, one of the most highly charged contemporary issues."

ADELAIDE MANNING (w. Cyril Henry Coles, as Manning Coles), Drink to Yesterday (1940) WARTIME
ADELAIDE MANNING (w. Cyril Henry Coles, as Manning Coles), Toast to Tomorrow (1940, aka Pray Silence) WARTIME
ADELAIDE MANNING (w. Cyril Henry Coles, as Manning Coles), They Tell No Tales (1940) WARTIME
ADELAIDE MANNING (w. Cyril Henry Coles, as Manning Coles), Without Lawful Authority (1943) WARTIME
ADELAIDE MANNING (w. Cyril Henry Coles, as Manning Coles), Green Hazard (1945) WARTIME
ADELAIDE MANNING (w. Cyril Henry Coles, as Manning Coles), The Fifth Man (1946) WARTIME
ADELAIDE MANNING (w. Cyril Henry Coles, as Manning Coles), A Brother for Hugh (1947, aka With Intent to Deceive) POSTWAR
Light-hearted spy novels making use of wartime and postwar intrigue.

OLIVIA MANNING, Growing Up (1948) WARTIME, POSTWAR
Includes several stories written during and immediately after the war.

OLIVIA MANNING, Artist Among the Missing (1949) POSTWAR
Novel about a painter scarred by his war experiences.

OLIVIA MANNING, School for Love (1951) WARTIME
A young orphan finds love in 1945 Jerusalem.

OLIVIA MANNING, The Balkan Trilogy (1960-1965) RETROSPECTIVE
OLIVIA MANNING, The Levant Trilogy (1977-1980) RETROSPECTIVE
Two epic trilogies—dramatized for television as Fortunes of War—tracing a young married couple’s lives in the Eastern Europe and the Middle East during the war years.

ELISABETH MARGETSON, A Stranger Beckoned (1942) WARTIME
"A modern romance of the R.A.F."

ANNE MARRECO (writing as ALICE ACLAND), A Person of Discretion (1958) RETROSPECTIVE
About three sisters from Brussels who get mixed up with the black market and the Resistance movement late in World War II.

EILEEN MARSH, We Lived in London (1942) WARTIME
Enjoyable tale of a working class family during the Blitz.

EILEEN MARSH, A Walled Garden (1943) WARTIME
Novel about evacuees in a village in Kent.

EILEEN MARSH, Eight Over Essen (1943) WARTIME
Novel about the crew of a bomber during a one week leave.

ANNE MAYBURY, Arise, Oh Sun (1940) WARTIME
Romance set in the early days of the war.

JACOBINE MENZIES-WILSON, September to September (1940) APPROACH
The story of a successful country family, the Stanyons, in the year between Munich and the beginning of the war.

JACOBINE MENZIES-WILSON, The Eye of a Needle (1942) WARTIME
Follows the Stanyon family introduced in September to September from May 1940 to January 1941.

JACOBINE MENZIES-WILSON, At First Light (1944) WARTIME
Set in 1942-1943, continues the story of the Stanyons begun in September to September and The Eye of a Needle.

JACOBINE MENZIES-WILSON, August at Acrelands (1946) WARTIME
Final volume in author's Stanyon family series, taking place in 1945 with peace quickly approaching.

BETTY MILLER, On the Side of the Angels (1945) WARTIME
Deals powerfully with gender roles as revealed by wartime experiences.

GLADYS MITCHELL, Brazen Tongue (1940) WARTIME
Mystery set against a backdrop of air-raid precautions and blackout in the early days of the war. Briefly reviewed here.

GLADYS MITCHELL, Sunset Over Soho (1943) WARTIME
Mystery with Dame Beatrice working as a doctor at a shelter for air raid casualties and bombed-out refugees.

NAOMI MITCHISON, The Blood of the Martyrs (1939) APPROACH
According to ODNB, "attempted to draw parallels between Nero's treatment of early Christians and Hitler's persecution of the Jews."

NANCY MITFORD, Pigeon Pie (1940) WARTIME
A rather zany spy story set in the earliest days of the war.

ALICE MOLONY, Lion's Crouch (1944) WARTIME
Children's book—"an exciting story about spies in Cornwall."

ELINOR MORDAUNT, Blitz Kids (1941) WARTIME
By turns humorous and poignant tale about children in "The Cut" in London during the Blitz.

JOAN MORGAN, Ding Dong Dell (1943) WARTIME
Novel focused on wartime refugees.

IRIS MORLEY, Nothing but Propaganda (1946) WARTIME
Partly autobiographical tale of a young wife wrestling with Communist ideals and the realities of war.

IRIS MORLEY, Not Without Fantasy (1947) WARTIME
Also based on her real experiences as the wife of a Moscow correspondent, this novel satirizes the life of a journalist in wartime.

NORAH MYLREA, Spies at Candover (1941) WARTIME
Girls' school story set in an evacuated school.

DAISY NEUMANN, Now That April's There (1945) WARTIME
Beginning in early 1944, the tale of the bumpy readjustments of two children who have just returned home after spending most of the war in the U.S. Reviewed here.

BARBARA NOBLE, The House Opposite (1943) WARTIME
Novel about an illicit love affair in London during the Blitz, with extraordinary details of what life was like, by an author who lived through it. Reviewed here. Available as a Furrowed Middlebrow reprint.

BARBARA NOBLE, Doreen (1946) WARTIME
Powerful novel (reprinted by Persephone) about a young evacuee in World War II; makes excellent use of Noble's interest in child psychology.

MARY NORTON, The Magic Bed-Knob (1943) WARTIME
MARY NORTON, Bonfires and Broomsticks (1947) WARTIME
Children's books about a nanny learning to be a witch; the first at least takes place during the war and includes a scene in London during the Blitz. The latter takes place partly in 1666, but also in wartime London.

KATE O'BRIEN, The Last of Summer (1943) APPROACH
Social drama set during a two week period in late summer of 1939, just as the war is beginning.

JANE OLIVER, The Hour of the Angel (1942) WARTIME
Set during the Blitz, with main character whose husband is in the RAF.

JANE OLIVER, In No Strange Land (1944) WARTIME
Primarily an historical novel, but it ends during WWII.

CAROLA OMAN, Nothing to Report (1940) WARTIME
Delightful Provincial Lady-ish diary of a village facing the early days of the war. Reviewed here. Available as a Furrowed Middlebrow reprint.

CAROLA OMAN, Somewhere in England (1943) WARTIME
Sequel to Nothing to Report, showing the village now in the full swing of war. Reviewed here. Available as a Furrowed Middlebrow reprint.

URSULA ORANGE, Tom Tiddler's Ground (1941, aka Ask Me No Questions) WARTIME
Charming wartime tale of a young mother evacuated to the countryside who snoops into village affairs. Reviewed here. Available as a Furrowed Middlebrow reprint.

URSULA ORANGE, Have Your Cake (1942) WARTIME
Humorous novel set during the war.

URSULA ORANGE, Company in the Evening (1944) WARTIME
Darker tale about discordant housemates during the late years of the war and a divorced couple who bond again as a result. Reviewed here. Available as a Furrowed Middlebrow reprint.

EVE ORME, There's Something About a Soldier (1942) WARTIME
Wartime romance novel.

MOLLIE PANTER-DOWNES, One Fine Day (1947) POSTWAR
Novel that evokes Woolf's Mrs. Dalloway in lushly detailing a single ordinary day in the life of a woman immediately after the end of the war.

MOLLIE PANTER-DOWNES, Good Evening, Mrs. Craven: The Wartime Stories (1999) WARTIME
Short stories originally published in The New Yorker, detailing the oddities and humor of wartime situations.

MOLLIE PANTER-DOWNES, Minnie's Room: The Peacetime Stories (2002) POSTWAR
Follow-up to Good Morning, Mrs. Craven, including additional New Yorker stories published after the war.

M. PARDOE, Bunkle Began It (1942) WARTIME
Atmospheric wartime entry in popular children's adventure series.

EDITH PARGETER, She Goes to War (1942) WARTIME
Diary-novel based on Pargeter's own experiences in the WRNS; paints an often vivid and detailed picture of the dangers and opportunities of war work.

EDITH PARGETER, The Lame Crusade (1945) WARTIME
EDITH PARGETER, Reluctant Odyssey (1946) WARTIME
EDITH PARGETER, Warfare Accomplished (1947) WARTIME
Trilogy (cumulatively known as The Eighth Champion of Christendom) which follows a young man from an English village who experiences warfare and returns home a changed man.

EDITH PARGETER, Lost Children (1951) POSTWAR
About a young girl from an impoverished aristocratic family who falls in love with a serviceman stationed nearby.

EDITH PARGETER, Most Loving Mere Folly (1953) POSTWAR
Set "in a bombed-out London suburb" just after the war, a tale of a married woman's illicit love affair, threatened by the sudden death of her husband.

EDITH PARGETER, Means of Grace (1956) POSTWAR
Novel about a young soprano, living in England since the war, who returns at war's end to her Baltic nation and witnesses turmoil and the beginnings of the Cold War.

EDITH PARGETER (as ELLIS PETERS), The Horn of Roland (1974) RETROSPECTIVE
Publisher blurb: "Buried secrets from the Nazi era threaten to destroy an Austrian composer."

JILL PATON WALSH, Fireweed (1969) RETROSPECTIVE
Two teenage runaways surviving in wartime London.

WINIFRED PECK, Bewildering Cares: A Week in the Life of a Clergyman's Wife (1940) WARTIME
Hilarious fictional diary of a rector's wife just as the anxieties of war are kicking in. Reviewed here. Available as a Furrowed Middlebrow reprint.

WINIFRED PECK, House-Bound (1942) WARTIME
Charming comedy about a woman surviving without servants in wartime Edinburgh.

WINIFRED PECK, There Is a Fortress (1945) WARTIME
Mostly historical, beginning just after World War I and continuing into World War II.

SHEILA PIM, Common or Garden Crime (1945) WARTIME
Mystery that vividly portrays wartime life in an Irish village. Reviewed here.

SHEILA PIM, Creeping Venom (1946) POSTWAR
Charming and funny mystery set in an Irish village, set in the final days of the war and the gradual return of peace. Reviewed here.

JOCELYN PLAYFAIR, A House in the Country (1944) WARTIME
Set in 1942, about a woman dealing with boarders and family in the English countryside while her lover is in a lifeboat after his boat is torpedoed.

DORIS POCOCK, Catriona Carries On (1940) WARTIME
Girls' story set in the early days of the war.

DORIS POCOCK, Lorna on the Land (1946) WARTIME
Wartime children's book about Land Girls.

EVADNE PRICE, Jane the Patient (1940) WARTIME
EVADNE PRICE, Jane at War (1947) WARTIME
Wartime entries in popular series.

L[ILIAN]. F[AITH]. LOVEDAY PRIOR, The Valley of Exile (1939) APPROACH
L[ILIAN]. F[AITH]. LOVEDAY PRIOR, These Times of Travail (1941) APPROACH
Novels dealing with the rise of fascism in the South Tyrol region of Austria.

MARGARET PULSFORD, Hope My Heritage (1945) WARTIME
Tragic novel about the love affair of a young woman running a shop in wartime.

VIRGINIA PYE, The Prices Return (1946) POSTWAR
Follows the Price family from some of Pye’s earlier works into the postwar, facing housing dilemmas and other challenges. Briefly discussed here.

BARBARA PYM, "Home Front Novel" (from Civil to Strangers) WARTIME
Early short work set during the war and only published posthumously.

BARBARA PYM, "So Very Secret" (from Civil to Strangers) WARTIME
Described by Pym as a "spy story," another early short work.

BARBARA PYM, Excellent Women (1952) POSTWAR
Pym's most famous work, a humorous tale set in and around a village church in the years immediately after the war.

HAZEL PYNEGAR & NOEL LANGLEY, Somebody's Rocking My Dreamboat (1949) WARTIME
Cynical, adolescent tale set in 1941, about a cargo steamer carrying a loathsome group of people trying to escape to safer climes. Ugh.

DOROTHY UNA RATCLIFFE, Mrs. Buffey in Wartime (1942) WARTIME
Fictionalized memoir about Ratcliffe's wartime experiences.

MARY RENAULT, The Friendly Young Ladies (1944) WARTIME
Matter-of-fact portrayal of a lesbian couple living on a houseboat during World War II.

MARY RENAULT, The North Face (1948) POSTWAR
Novel which, according to Jenny Hartley, takes the main character's predilection for rock-climbing as a symbol for life in the postwar years.

MARY RENAULT, The Charioteer (1953) RETROSPECTIVE
Early portrayal of gay men, dealing with a wounded soldier's triangular relationship with a conscientious objector and a naval officer while in a hospital in the midst of blackout and bombings.

MARJORIE RICHARDS, King's Soldier (1944) WARTIME
Long novel detailing the life of a military man in various conflicts, ending with the Battle of Britain.

E. ARNOT ROBERTSON, The Signpost (1943) WARTIME
Novel about a wounded RAF pilot and his relationship with a French woman in a remote Irish fishing village.

DENISE ROBINS, Winged Love (1941) WARTIME
Romance novelist's wartime entry, the tale of an RAF officer's escape from France with the French woman he loves.

CATHERINE ROSS, Battle Dress (1979) RETROSPECTIVE
Written by a former WAAF, a novel about wartime WAAF life at an airfield in the Orkneys. Recommended for this list by Avis Judd.

JEAN ROSS, Women in Exile (1942) WARTIME
Largely focused on women in an English village, including evacuees and those who have lost their homes to bombs. Reviewed here.

JEAN ROSS, Aunt Ailsa (1944) WARTIME
About English family life, mostly flashbacks to earlier times, but prologue and epilogue are WWII.

BERTA RUCK, Jade Earrings (1941) WARTIME
Cheerful novel about the transformation of a Bloomsbury singer into a Land Girl in Wales.

BERTA RUCK, Fiancées Are Relatives (1941) WARTIME
Romance featuring some of the same characters as Ruck's WWI novel The Girls at His Billet (1916).

HARRIET RUTLAND, Blue Murder (1942) WARTIME
Murder mystery centered around an eccentric family and a mystery writer boarding with them. Reprinted by Dean Street Press.

VITA SACKVILLE-WEST, Grand Canyon (1941) WARTIME
Her foray into sci-fi, imagining the outcome of a German victory in the war.

MAUREEN SARSFIELD, Green December Fills the Graveyard (1945) WARTIME
Mystery set in a partially-bombed out manor house in the late years of the war. Reprinted with the bland title Murder at Shots Hall. Reviewed here.

MAUREEN SARSFIELD, Gloriana (1946) WARTIME
The author's only non-mystery, about the eccentric residents of a Chelsea boarding house in 1943.

CONSTANCE SAVERY, Enemy Brothers (1943) WARTIME
About a British airman who believes that a young German prison is actually his brother, who had been kidnapped many years before.

DOROTHY L. SAYERS, "The Wimsey Papers" (1940) WARTIME
Published in the Spectator and only recently reprinted, a series of fictional letters between Peter Wimsey, Harriet Vane, and others of their circle, focused on the early days of the war.

DOROTHY L. SAYERS, Striding Folly (1971) WARTIME
Collection of Lord Peter stories, which includes one story written during the war.

MARGERIE SCOTT, The Darling Illusion (1955) RETROSPECTIVE
Opening with a murdered actress, whom we then see in flashback through her life, including in London during the Blitz.

MARGERY SHARP, Britannia Mews (1946) WARTIME
Novel that covers a lot of ground in its heroine's life but ends up during World War II.

MARGERY SHARP, The Foolish Gentlewoman (1948) POSTWAR
Follows the inhabitants and neighbors of a house on the outskirts of London just after the end of World War II.

JANE SHAW, House of the Glimmering Light (1943) WARTIME
Popular girls' author's wartime spy story.

EDITH SIMON, Biting the Blue Finger (1942) WARTIME
German-born author's tale, set from the beginning of the war to the Blitz, of a restless young woman who leaves home to work on a barge, then at an ARP post.

DOROTHY EVELYN SMITH, He Went for a Walk (1954) RETROSPECTIVE
Children’s book in which a boy made homeless by the Blitz finds his way across wartime England.

MADGE S. SMITH, Peggy Speeds the Plough (1941) WARTIME
Girls' story about joining the Land Army.

STEVIE SMITH, The Holiday (1949) POSTWAR
Written in the final years of the war, but most wartime references were removed when it finally appeared. The novel retains a claustrophibic feel which may be explained if one imagines it taking place late in the war.

NANCY SPAIN, The Kat Strikes (1955) POSTWAR
Energetic, darkly humorous thriller set in postwar London and making use of its characters’ wartime experiences.

MURIEL SPARK, The Girls of Slender Means (1963) RETROSPECTIVE
Takes place in a London boarding-house for girls during the final days of World War II.

ANN STAFFORD, Cuckoo Green (1941) WARTIME
Wartime tale of a country village in wartime from the author of Greyladies' Silver Street.

BARBARA STANTON, Sweetheart of a Million (1943) WARTIME
Wartime entry from popular romance novelist.

MARGUERITE STEEN, Shelter (1942) WARTIME
Blitz novel which makes some use of the experimental techniques of modernism.

D. E. STEVENSON, The English Air (1940) WARTIME
Set in the last days of peace and first days of war, involving an English family coping with the approach of war and the son of a Nazi officer who visits them and has a somewhat different perspective on events.

D. E. STEVENSON, Mrs. Tim Carries On (1941) WARTIME
Stevenson takes her loosely autobiographical alter-ego into the early months of wartime. Available as a Furrowed Middlebrow reprint.

D. E. STEVENSON, Spring Magic (1941) WARTIME
Young woman takes her first holiday, to a fishing village in Scotland during the war. Available as a Furrowed Middlebrow reprint.

D. E. STEVENSON, Crooked Adam (1942) WARTIME
Stevenson's foray into World War II spy novels, set in Scotland.

D. E. STEVENSON, Celia's House (1943) WARTIME
A family story beginning in 1905 and ending up in 1942. The wartime scenes are short and only at the very end of the novel.

D. E. STEVENSON, The Two Mrs. Abbotts (1943) WARTIME
Wartime entry in Stevenson's Miss Buncle series, featuring brave soldiers, rationing, and a German parachutist.

D. E. STEVENSON, Listening Valley (1944) WARTIME
Beginning in the 1930s and progressing to wartime London and Scotland.

D. E. STEVENSON, The Four Graces (1946) WARTIME
Loosely connected to The Two Mrs. Abbotts and the earlier Miss Buncle books, this entry takes place in the final days of the war.

D. E. STEVENSON, Mrs. Tim Gets a Job (1947) POSTWAR
Postwar entry in Stevenson's popular Mrs. Tim series (and therefore a sequel of sorts to Mrs. Tim Carries On). Available as a Furrowed Middlebrow reprint.

D. E. STEVENSON, Kate Hardy (1947) POSTWAR
Set in the immediate postwar years, about a young writer in an English village.

D. E. STEVENSON, Young Mrs. Savage (1948) POSTWAR
About a young widow with four children, recovering from the war in a Scottish village.

D. E. STEVENSON, Vittoria Cottage (1949) POSTWAR
A novel of family life in an English village in the years just after the war. Available as a Furrowed Middlebrow reprint.

D. E. STEVENSON, Amberwell (1955) RETROSPECTIVE
About a family and their staff in a country house before and during the war.

D. E. STEVENSON, Summerhills (1956) POSTWAR
Sequel to Amberwell, traces the Ayrton family into the postwar years and includes the setting up of a boys' school.

D. E. STEVENSON, Sarah Morris Remembers (1966) RETROSPECTIVE
Story of a woman looking back over her early life, from her childhood in a vicarage to the thick of the Blitz in London.

MARY STEWART, Madam, Will You Talk? (1954) POSTWAR
Popular romantic suspense author's debut, in which a young widow on holiday in Avignon gets mixed up in intrigue, partly concerned with events occurring during the war.

MONICA STIRLING, Lovers Aren't Company (1949) WARTIME
Set in the final days of World War II in Italy, based on Stirling's own experiences as a war correspondent.

MONICA STIRLING, Ladies with a Unicorn (1953) POSTWAR
Glamourous tale of filmmaking in Rome, but featuring several characters haunted by wartime losses.

GRACE ZARING STONE (as ETHEL VANCE), Escape (1939) APPROACH
American author's bestselling novel about an actress who winds up in a German concentration camp. Stone used her pseudonym because her daughter, author Eleanor Perenyi, was living in occupied Hungary.

GRACE ZARING STONE (as ETHEL VANCE), Reprisal (1942) WARTIME
American novel set in occupied France and dealing with the Resistance.

LESLEY STORM, Heart of a City (1942) WARTIME
Hit play set during the Blitz.

LESLEY STORM, Great Day (1945) WARTIME
Members of a village Women's Institute in 1942 attempt to overcome personal and class differences to prepare for a visit from Eleanor Roosevelt. Reviewed here.

NOEL STREATFEILD, The Winter Is Past (1940) WARTIME
Lovely, funny, surprisingly gritty tale of a country house, its residents and visitors during the drab, anticlimactic days of the "phony war". Reviewed here.

NOEL STREATFEILD, The Children of Primrose Lane (1941) WARTIME
Children's adventure story written during the Blitz and making use of wartime atmosphere.

NOEL STREATFEILD, I Ordered a Table for Six (1942) WARTIME
Blitz novel tracking six individuals in the days before they'll be together in the midst of an air raid and not all will survive.

NOEL STREATFEILD (as SUSAN SCARLETT), Summer Pudding (1943) WARTIME
One of her Susan Scarlett romances, a cheerful comedy making use of wartime elements. Reviewed here.

NOEL STREATFEILD, Harlequinade (1943) WARTIME
Children's title in which a group of circus children are sent to the countryside to ride out the war.

NOEL STREATFEILD (as SUSAN SCARLETT), Murder While You Work (1944) WARTIME
Light tale combining elements of romance and mystery in a wartime factory setting.

NOEL STREATFEILD, Curtain Up (1944, aka Theatre Shoes) WARTIME
Children's book set against a backdrop of the war. Note that most subsequent reprints of the book edit out the war-related content.

NOEL STREATFEILD, Saplings (1945) WARTIME
Reprinted by Persephone, a powerful examination of the ways in which the tragedies of war scar a family.

NOEL STREATFEILD, Party Frock (1946, aka Party Shoes) WARTIME
Also about children living in an English village at the very end and immediately after the war; one character's parents are in a prison camp.

NOEL STREATFEILD, Poppies for England (1946) POSTWAR
One of Streatfeild’s Susan Scarlett romances, set just after the end of the war.

NOEL STREATFEILD, Beyond the Vicarage (1971) RETROSPECTIVE
Third volume of Streatfeild's fictionalized memoir, in which "Vicky" becomes an author and joins the WVS during the war.

NOEL STREATFEILD, When the Sirens Wailed (1974) RETROSPECTIVE
Children's fiction in which Streatfeild returns to her wartime experiences.

JAN STRUTHER, Mrs. Miniver (1939) APPROACH
One of the most famous works of the pre-war years, a series of short pieces about a family in Chelsea, later made into an Oscar-winning film. Struther later added pieces set during the war.

GERALDINE SYMONS, Now and Then (1977, published in the U.S. as Crocuses Were Over, Hitler Was Dead) RETROSPECTIVE
A time-slip story of a girl moving with her family to a country estate and occasionally slipping back into World War II when she befriends a gardener and his dog from those earlier years.

ETHEL M. TALBOT, The Warringtons in War-Time (1940) WARTIME
Children's author's foray into wartime fiction.

LAURA TALBOT, The Gentlewomen (1952) RETROSPECTIVE
Novel focused on the disruptions of class identity brought about by World War II.

ELIZABETH TAYLOR, At Mrs. Lippincote's (1945) WARTIME
Taylor's first novel wonderfully evokes the fatigue and strain of the final phase of the war.

ELIZABETH TAYLOR, A View of the Harbour (1947) POSTWAR
After erasing the war entirely from her second novel Palladium, Taylor presented an atmospheric glimpse of postwar life in this work.

ELIZABETH TAYLOR, Complete Short Stories (2012) WARTIME
Includes several early stories making use of wartime concerns and settings.

JOSEPHINE TEY, The Franchise Affair (1948) POSTWAR
Non-series mystery that contains frequent mentions of the war and of postwar conditions.

ANGELA THIRKELL, Cheerfulness Breaks In (1940) WARTIME
The approach and beginning of war as hilariously experienced in Barsetshire. A favorite of many Thirkell fans.

ANGELA THIRKELL, Northbridge Rectory (1941) WARTIME
ANGELA THIRKELL, Marling Hall (1942) WARTIME
ANGELA THIRKELL, Growing Up (1943) WARTIME
ANGELA THIRKELL, The Headmistress (1944) WARTIME
ANGELA THIRKELL, Miss Bunting (1945) WARTIME
Other witty wartime entries in the Barsetshire Chronicles.

ANGELA THIRKELL, Peace Breaks Out (1946) POSTWAR
Barsetshire chronicle tracing the transition from war back to peace in village life.

ANGELA THIRKELL, Private Enterprise (1947) POSTWAR
ANGELA THIRKELL, Love Among the Ruins (1948) POSTWAR
Subsequent Barsetshire entries evoking immediate postwar life.

SYLVIA THOMPSON, The Gulls Fly Inland (1941) WARTIME
Set during 1939-1940, but apparently primarily focused on interpersonal relations.

SYLVIA THOMPSON, The People Opposite (1948) POSTWAR
Deals lightly with two postwar families, among whom is a young invalided soldier trying to get back in the swing of things after a long hospitalization.

GILLIAN TINDALL, The Intruder (1979) RETROSPECTIVE
Novel about a young Englishwoman and her son stuck in occupied France during World War II.

MONICA TINDALL, The Late Mrs Prioleau (1945) WARTIME
Young mystery writer unearths secrets about her late, ogre-ish mother-in-law. Begins just before the war and continues well into the war years. Reviewed here and available as a Furrowed Middlebrow reprint.

BARBARA EUPHAN TODD, Miss Ranskill Comes Home (1946) WARTIME
Reprinted by Persephone, a comedy about a woman who has been marooned on an island and returns to find England in the thick of war.

RUTH TOMALIN, The Spring House (1968) RETROSPECTIVE
A sequel to The Garden House (1964), which took place before the war, this volume follows Ralph and his guardian into WWII, living in a cottage in Sussex.

URSULA TORDAY (as CHARITY BLACKSTOCK), The Briar Patch (1960) POSTWAR
Novel set in Paris just after the war and featuring two teenagers, one a Holocaust survivor.

P. L. TRAVERS, I Go by Sea, I Go by Land (1941) WARTIME
Children's title by Mary Poppins author, dealing with evacuated children.

MARY TREADGOLD, We Couldn't Leave Dinah (1941) WARTIME
About children who miss the evacuation of a fictional Channel island (because they can't leave their horse behind) and end up aiding the resistance to the Nazis.

MARY TREADGOLD, No Ponies (1946) POSTWAR
Children's story about France just after the war, tackling the very adult issue of Nazi collaborators.

MARY TREADGOLD, The Polly Harris (1949) POSTWAR
Sequel to We Couldn't Leave Dinah, following that book's children into the postwar years.

EILEEN TREMAYNE, Those Who Remain (1942) WARTIME
About a London family retreating to a small village in the early days of the war. Reviewed at Reading 1900-1950 here.

PRINCESS PAUL TROUBETZKOY, The Clock Strikes (1943) WARTIME
Dramatic novel set in a seaside town in France under Nazi occupation.

FRANCES TURK, The Five Grey Geese (1944) WARTIME
Cheerful romance about five young women in the Land Army.

FRANCES TURK, Candle Corner (1943) WARTIME
Romance about an RAF pilot recovering from injuries on a farm.

SUSAN TWEEDSMUIR, The Rainbow Through the Rain (1950) WARTIME
Village story set roughly from the beginning to the end of World War II.

CONSTANCE WAGNER, The Major Has Seven Guests (1941) APPROACH
Observer: "Intelligent thriller with good characters and dialogue, in Fascist State on eve of war. Violet climax."

KATHLEEN WALLACE, Their Chimneys Into Spires (1939) APPROACH
About a group of Chelsea residents coping with the approach of war.

KATHLEEN WALLACE, Singing Tree (1941) WARTIME
Observer: "tells emotionally how a selfless girl loved a boy airman whose sweetheart let him down … All very hectic."

KATHLEEN WALLACE, Without Signposts (1941) WARTIME
A widow and her children retreat to the countryside of Devon in the early days of the war, and encounter an array of fellow evacuees.

E. M. WARD, Forest Silver (1941) WARTIME
E. M. WARD, Isle of Saints (1943) WARTIME
E. M. WARD, Voices in the Wind (1944) WARTIME
Atmospheric wartime tales by an author known for her descriptions of landscape. The first is set in Westmorland, while the others are set in Wales.

D. GAINSBOROUGH WARING, This Day's Madness (1939) APPROACH
D. GAINSBOROUGH WARING, Against My Fire (1941) WARTIME
D. GAINSBOROUGH WARING, Hatred Herewith (1942) WARTIME
Controversial author's thriller-ish tales of Nazis and the Secret Service.

SYLVIA TOWNSEND WARNER, A Garland of Straw (1943) WARTIME
SYLVIA TOWNSEND WARNER, The Museum of Cheats (1947) WARTIME
Two collections of stories featuring most of Warner's wartime stories, many among her very best work. Discussed here.

PATRICIA WENTWORTH, The Chinese Shawl (1943) WARTIME
PATRICIA WENTWORTH, Miss Silver Deals With Death (aka Miss Silver Intervenes) (1944) WARTIME
PATRICIA WENTWORTH, The Clock Strikes Twelve (1944) WARTIME
PATRICIA WENTWORTH, The Key (1944) WARTIME
Entries in the popular Miss Silver mystery series, all set against a background of war, though some make more use of this atmosphere than others.

PATRICIA WENTWORTH, The Traveller Returns (aka She Came Back) (1945) WARTIME
Mystery which follows the drama when a woman believed to be dead in the war returns home after three years.

PATRICIA WENTWORTH, Silence in Court (1945) WARTIME
Non-Miss Silver, wartime mystery about a young girl accused of her wealthy cousin's murder.

PATRICIA WENTWORTH, The Case of William Smith (1948) POSTWAR
Mystery featuring prominently a returning soldier with amnesia.

MARY WESLEY, The Camomile Lawn (1984) RETROSPECTIVE
"Sad, funny, and whimsical … the story of one extended family's adventures in London during the Blitz."

DOROTHY WHIPPLE, The Priory (1939) APPROACH
Mentioned by Delafield's Provincial Lady as perfect wartime reading; set in the final days before the outbreak of war. Briefly reviewed here.

DOROTHY WHIPPLE, Someone at a Distance (1953) POSTWAR
Whipple’s final novel and masterpiece, highly evocative of the postwar years as well as recalling the characters' wartime experiences. Reviewed here.

DOROTHY WHIPPLE, The Closed Door and Other Stories (2007) WARTIME
Though the title novella was published before the war, some of the other stories were written and are set during the war.

ELIZABETH WHITEHEAD, Adventurous Exile (1946) WARTIME
Children's title about a party of English schoolgirls and teachers trapped in France during World War II.

BARBARA WHITTON, Green Hands (1943) WARTIME
Energetic, optimistic novel about young women in the Land Army.

MARJORIE WILENSKI, Table Two (1942) WARTIME
Rare novel about a group of women translators in the Ministry of Foreign Intelligence. Reviewed here. Available as a Furrowed Middlebrow reprint.

BARBARA WILLARD, The Dogs Do Bark (1948) POSTWAR
Ironic family story set at a seaside resort just after the war.

BARBARA WILLARD, Celia Scarfe (1951) RETROSPECTIVE
The story of a schoolmistress who has a child out of wedlock and allows him to be adopted, but for whom the war provides a unique opportunity.

BARBARA WILLARD, Echo Answers (1952) POSTWAR
Woman whose lover was killed in the war becomes entangled with a theatrical family.

MARGUERITE WILLIAMS, Be Merry, My Dear (1942) WARTIME
Wartime conflict between "an amiable journalist of talent and his too independent schoolmistress wife" (Observer).

DESEMEA WILSON (as DIANA PATRICK), Life Is to Seek (1940) WARTIME
Romantic novel about young people in the early days of WWII, by the mother of Romilly Cavan.

VIRGINIA WOOLF, Between the Acts (1941) APPROACH
Highly experimental novel about a village pageant, over which the threat of war looms in subtle and symbolic ways.

VIRGINIA WOOLF, "Thoughts on Peace in an Air Raid" WARTIME
One of her final essays, originally appearing in The Death of the Moth and Other Essays (1942) but often reprinted in other collections.

ESTHER TERRY WRIGHT, Pilot's Wife's Tale (1942) WARTIME
Lightly fictionalized diary of life with her pilot husband during World War II, including his recovery from injuries sustained in the Battle of Britain.

ESTHER TERRY WRIGHT, The Prophet Bird (1958) POSTWAR
Novel about a middle-class couple struggling in the postwar years.

PAMELA WYNNE, Pineapple Place (1946) WARTIME
Romance novel centered on the residents of a hotel in the English countryside during the war.

E. H. YOUNG, Chatterton Square (1947) APPROACH
Tale of the inhabitants of a town square in the late 1930s, as war looms before them. Recently released in paperback and e-book as one of the inaugural titles in the British Library Women Writers series.

17 comments:

  1. WOW@! So many favorites here, and some new (to me) titles by favorite authors, especially Noel Streatfeild! Many thanks. Scott, for a non-Miss Silver wartime Wentworth, try "Silence in Court."
    Thanks again, my only sad thought here is - right now, I have no access to libraries to find most of these! DRAT! BUT - time to reread the shelves! Starting with Streatfeild's "The Winter is Past."
    Thanksk again,
    Tom

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    1. Tom, you are right. Silence in Court is now my favorite non-Miss Silver mystery by Patricia Wentworth. Thank you for the recommendation. And a LOT of WWII influence.

      Jerri

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    2. Thank you Tom and Jerri (hee hee). I had no idea about Silence in Court. I will give it a try and add it to my list when I revise!

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  2. An Amazing new list - I hope lots more of these turn into Furrowed Middlebrow reprints.
    Well done on all that work.
    I hope you both and your families and friends are all keeping fit and well as we get ourselves through this very strange time.

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    1. Thank you Sue! Hope you're doing well too (and getting lots of reading done!).

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  3. Amazing list. I'm surprised to find how many of these books I've read but a lot of titles are new to me.
    Thank you for the hard work you must have put into this; it's a great source now.

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    1. Thanks Barbara, and be sure to let me know if there's anything I missed. I should be able to update this one more frequently than every five years!

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  4. What a great new list (or updated list version). I haven't had the time to go through it in detail, but I am confident that I will find lots of things to add to my TBR pile/list.

    Thank you Scott for all your efforts. By the way, I managed to find the time to read one book on the list, The Foolish Gentlewoman. On the whole I enjoyed it, but was a bit disappointed at the portion of the ending that applied to the young female companion. I thought the other characters had endings that were suitable for them, but I thought she was short changed. I hope that after the book ends that character finds a Happy Ending of some sort.

    Jerri

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    1. Thanks Jerri! I'm glad you liked Foolish Gentlewoman. I think I particularly liked the ending because they all seemed entirely realistic and un-idealized, particularly for that immediate postwar period. Like Sharp just couldn't romanticize everything after all that had happened.

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  5. Working my way down (and up) your list, I was reminded of Harriet Rutland. I had bought the Dean Street Press versions of her three mysteries a while back (it looks like 2015!) and read the first two, Knock Murderer, Knock and Bleeding Hooks soon thereafter, but somehow had never gotten around to her war time mystery, Blue Murder. A very cleaver mystery novel, with plenty of WWII background worked into it. However, as the introductions say, darker than the other two and without the continuing series characters. The ending is quite something, unconventional, unusual and disturbing. In some ways it reminded me of Heyer's darkest mystery, Penhallow, which was written during the war but obviously either set before the war or in an alternative England without WWII. Both were published in 1942. Both are disturbing, although with some dark humor, both focus on a dysfunctional family, both share another plot element which I can't mention due to spoilers. It would be interesting to read a comparison and contrast essay on the two.

    Thank you for this list, as I might never have remembered to go back and read Blue Murder. (And I can't figure out the meaning of the title. I wonder what I am missing.)

    Jerri

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    1. Strangely, Jerri, I think I did the same as you. I've read the first two, but not the third. It sounds intriguing despite the darkness. I wonder if it might have been the darkness of the time that influenced both authors?

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  6. What about Madam, Will You Talk? by Mary Stewart for a Postwar book. Written and set in 1955, while it all takes place in France it is one of the first books to make plain to me that rationing was so extreme in England after the war. (The joke the two youngish Englishwomen on holiday in France make about being served real meat near the beginning of the book is wonderful.) Also, the plot of the mystery involves the treatment of the Jews during WWII. Her first novel, and very much a function of that time and place.

    Jerri

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    1. Thanks Jerri, I'll add it to my list of titles to add!

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  7. This list is such a treat! I want all of them. I echo Jerri's suggestion of Madam, Will You Talk? (alas, my mother and I were going to trace Charity's steps in May - I hope we can reschedule our trip). I know this list is for British authors but I have to mention part of Elswyth Thane's Williamsburg novels. After the first two in the series, they are primarily set in England. The Light Heart is set before and during WWI and deals with an English girl marrying a Prussian while the next book, Kissing Kin, ends in 1934. But This Was Tomorrow and Homing are both set during WWII. I love this author so much I can't help buying duplicates - I may have to send Scott my extra copies so he becomes a fan. Thane was from Iowa but never looked back once she got to NYC - changed her name and married the Jacques Cousteau of his day, William Beebe.

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    1. To wet your appetite for tracing Charity's footsteps, you might read about a person taking a similar journey, at the Mary Queen of Plots web site:

      https://marystewartreading.wordpress.com/2017/03/28/in-avignon/

      Jerri

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  8. So much richness here!!! I adore Barbara Pym. And DE Stevenson's novels are very much on my mind these days - I think about what the Brits went thru, with food shortages, and everything else they had to endure.

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  9. A bit late to the party, I've been meaning to write with a suggested title since, well, April 2nd. Anyway, here 'tis: Experiment in Springtime by Margaret Millar, published in 1947 by Random House. Her first novel outside the mystery genre, it concerns an unhealthy marriage and the return of the wife's ex-fiancee from the war. Millar was a Canadian, of course, but she did live most of her life in the United States, so I'm guessing she qualifies. Either way, I do recommend the novel. If interested, here's my review: Experiment in Springtime.

    Keep up the good work! And stay safe!

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