This book was published by Hodder on 23rd February 2017. My thanks to the publisher for the review copy.
1970s London has stopped swinging, but it's not staying still.
Babs thought she had all the world ahead of her. Then she got pregnant and the father did a runner.
Salvation comes in the form of a man who'll look after her. Or so she thinks.
But Stan Miller is the devil in disguise...and over the next twenty years, Babs will have reason to regret she ever met him. Can she protect her family - or will he get the better of her?
BLOOD MOTHER is the second thrilling book in the Flesh and Blood series, capturing a world very different from today but where some things still hold true: be careful what you wish for, and watch out for who you trust...
Dreda Say Mitchell is by now one of favourite crime writers. She writes with great enthusiam and a passion for the East End. She brings the location alive with her characters, and their unique and individual voices. I will never tire of reading these stories.
Blood Mother takes us back to the 1970's. Babs is full of hope and ambition for the future, but she finds herself completely on her own. Pregnant and with nowhere to turn, Stanley Miller seems like the answer to all Babs prayers, from the outset he seems almost to good to be true. What follows is Babs story.
Stanley Miller is an absolute pig and manipulative with it and some would say that Babs is naive to have got involved in the first place. I loved the way the story unravelled over twenty years. Instead of the downtrodden woman you would expect Babs to be, she is instead not a person to be crossed, a firecracker willing to go to any lengths to protect her daughters.
It was wonderful to revisit the characters from Blood Sister but I would suggest that this book could be read as a standalone, although I personally couldn't not read all three. This is because the stories do cross over.
This book is full of the East End grit, twists and turns and pacing of story that I have come to expect and love from this author. A book where the women are ultimately strong and don't put up with any nonsense. The importance of family is prevalent and looking out for your own. Real and individual characters that just create a tapestry of the time and place.
The ending though, you can't leave a reader hanging like that! I am waiting in urgent anticipation for the final instalment of this brilliant trilogy now.
About the Author:
Dreda Say Mitchell grew up on a housing estate in East London. She is an award winning novelist, broadcaster, journalist and freelance education consultant. She was named one Britain's 50 Remarkable Women by Lady Geek. She is the author of five novels, with her first book having been awarded The CWA's John Creasey Dagger for the best debut crime novel.
She has appeared on Newsnight, Daybreak and Canadian television's Sun New Live. She has presented BBC Radio 4's Open Book, and is a frequent guest of Radio 4's The Review Show, Front Row and Saturday Review. She is the founder of the creative writing programme 'Write-On', which she has run in both YOIs and prison.
She has worked in education for over twenty years, including positions as a primary school deputy head teacher and local authority consultant. Dreda has an African history degree and an MA in Education Studies. She is also a patron of The National Youth Arts Trust.