‘A page-turner... a terrific read’Susan Sallis
"A powerful tale of survival and hardship, very well crafted and with strong characters" -Publishing News
Magda's Daughter - Book Nine of the Hearts of Gold series by Best-Selling author Catrin Collier
Stateless and destitute after the Second World War, Magda Janek settles in the Welsh town of Pontypridd, in the hope of building a new life for herself and her baby daughter, Helena. All Magda has to give Helena are the ambitions she had once cherished for herself; dreams cruelly snatched from her by the war and its terrible aftermath. But 1960s Pontypridd is a place of opportunity - at twenty-one, Magda's daughter has beauty, confidence and prospects beyond even her mother's wildest imaginings. With a university degree behind her, a coveted teaching post in her old Grammar school, and marriage to the love of her life, Dr Eddie John, the son of an old Pontypridd family to look forward to, Helena couldn't be happier.
Until tragedy strikes. A tragedy that robs Helena of the only family she has ever known and everything she has ever believed in; Helena uncovers a bitter secret, so explosive that her mother carried it to the grave...
About the Author
Catrin Collier is Wales' most prolific and well-known author of historical, romantic fictions. The daughter of a Prussian refugee mother and Welsh father, she grew up in Pontypridd. She has written 19 novels for Orion. Her first historical novel Hearts of Gold, was filmed as a mini-series by the BBC in 2003. She lives with her family on the Gower Peninsula, near Swansea. She also writes crime fiction under the pen name Katherine John.
Read an Excerpt
'You've done a brilliant job of bringing her up, Magda. Helena has turned out to be a fine girl, a credit to you and herself. And she's got herself a good man, even if he isn't Catholic. But take my advice, slow down. The world will keep turning if your shop runsout of pies and pastries an hour before closing time, and there's only two sausage rolls for every three children at the Sunday school tea parties.'
Magda made a face as she dry-swallowed two aspirins. She knew from experience that the sooner she took the pain-killers, the sooner the stabbing pains would stop. But Father O'Brien was wrong about one thing. Her headache had nothing to do with stress and everything to do with the war. Just one more bitter souvenir.
She sat back in the seat, closed her eyes, and waited for the foul taste of the pills to subside along with the pain.
'I know you wanted Helena to be married with a full celebratory mass, but the mixed marriage ceremony is a splendid one in its own right, Magda. And who knows? When the children start coming along, Helena's young man might change his mind about being received into the Church. And then there'll be another cause for celebration. '
Magda could hear Father O'Brien's soft, musical Irish lilt, but the pain in her head had intensified, closing out the world around her. She'd had many headaches before, but never one like this. It was as though everything was conspiring to make it worse. The lurching movement of the car. The heat of the sun burning her face through the windscreen. The discordant blast of a car horn behind them ...
'Magda ... Magda ... Mother of God ... '