When Clarry is born, her mother dies and her indifferent father leaves her and her brother, Peter to be raised by a series of housekeepers and well-intentioned neighbours. They long for their summer holidays in Cornwall where, largely ignored by their grandparents, they roam free with their cousin, Rupert who they adore.
Back home, Peter shares all he learns at school with Clarry who is not considered worth a proper education until boarding school is forced upon him. As war approaches and Rupert leaves for France, their world changes forever.
This is an amazing story, destined to be a classic. Following Clarry from her birth to adulthood, the book explores family relationships against the backdrop of the first world war. Each character is beautifully developed, fully engaging the reader emotionally as their lives unfold. Clarry is delightful, remaining positive and caring in the face of neglect and indifference, devoted to her bother and cousin, and determined to succeed in the face of all adversity. Gentle, loyal Simon, Peter's school friend, adds great poignancy to the story, sensitively exploring social attitudes of the time.
'The Skylark's War' is a touching story, full of vivid description and historical detail. Excellent!
The Skylark’s War Hilary McKay
Macmillan ISBN: 978-1509894949
We were asked to review ‘The Skylark’s War’ for Reading Zone a while ago. It’s such a wonderful book we decided to share our review here too!