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Mrs Tim Carries On (1941)

af D. E. Stevenson

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Serier: Mrs. Tim (3)

MedlemmerAnmeldelserPopularitetGennemsnitlig vurderingOmtaler
1514182,368 (4.13)69
There is so much War News in News Bulletins, in Newspapers, and so much talk about the war that I do not intend to write about it in my diary. Indeed my diary is a sort of escape from the war . . . though it is almost impossible to escape from the anxieties which it brings. Bestselling author D.E. Stevenson's charming fictional alter-ego, Hester Christie-or "Mrs. Tim" as she is affectionately known to friends of her military husband-was first introduced to readers in Mrs. Tim of the Regiment, published in 1932. In 1941, Stevenson brought Mrs. Tim back in this delightful sequel, to lift spirits and boost morale in the early days of World War II. With her husband stationed in France, Hester finds plenty to keep her busy on the Home Front. From her first air raid and a harrowing but hilarious false alarm about a German invasion, to volunteering at the regiment's "Comforts Depot," guiding the romantic destinies of her pretty houseguest and an injured soldier, and making a flying visit to a blacked-out, slightly bedraggled London with its fighting spirit intact, Mrs. Tim does indeed carry on-in inimitable style. Mrs. Tim returns in two subsequent novels, Mrs Tim Gets a Job (1947) and Mrs Tim Flies Home (1952), all back in print for the first time in decades from Furrowed Middlebrow and Dean Street Press. This new edition features an introduction by Alexander McCall Smith. "She admirably preserves her lightness of touch, with a tinge of melancholy added, which perfectly suits the mood of 1940." Glasgow Herald "This is not merely a war book to which cheerfulness keeps breaking in, it is a book of cheerfulness from which the war cannot be kept out . . . Major Tim's amazing escape from Dunkirk is high drama superbly handled, and her word pictures are both lifelike and lively." Manchester Evening News.… (mere)
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Viser 4 af 4
I decided to do a reread of this. It's been 6-1/2 years since I read it. I enjoyed it a lot more than I evidently did the first time through. It's so funny in parts. There are lots of moments that easily earn a chuckle. I loved getting to revisit D.E. Stevenson's style and feel that the character of Mrs. Tim was a stand-in for how she herself experienced the challenge of being on the home front during the 1940s.


Original review follows:
-----------------------------------------------
Leisurely reading that's quite enjoyable. I have to admit that not a whole lot happens in this book, although of course since it's in the middle of World War II, there is a bit of excitement over Hester's husband coming and going from the front. Still, it's mostly domestic stuff happening. The character of Pinkie (I think she's about 19) is a pleasant addition.
I feel like so far the Mrs. Tim books are the type that you could just open up right in the middle of the book and read without losing any material plot points. Since they're written in diary form, each day is kind of a plot unto itself. From what I can tell, the diary entries continue to be somewhat autobiographical, as D.E. Stevenson mentions in her introduction that she used her own diary as source material.
I really can't say that this book was gripping or enthralling, but it was gentle and relaxing, which is awfully nice sometimes. ( )
  Alishadt | Feb 25, 2023 |
Mrs. Tim Carries On is the highly delightful sequel to Mrs. Tim of the Regiment, which follows the adventures of Hester Christie, wife of an Army Major. It is 1940, the war is fully underway, and Tim has been sent over to the front, leaving Hester with their two children Betty and Bryan. As Hester explains in her own way:

"I proceed to explain my own peculiar method of ‘carrying on’. None of us could bear the war if we allowed ourselves to brood upon the wickedness of it and the misery it has entailed, so the only thing to do is not to allow oneself to think about it seriously, but just to skitter about on the service of life like a waterbeetle. In this was one can carry on and do one’s bit and remain moderately cheerful."

In her diary, Hester promises not to talk about the war except for the times when she worries—which, as it turns out, isn’t often. She deals primarily with the everyday life of being an officer's wife--some of it good, some of it tiring. Although the war is raging outside her little corner of England and her husband is away at war and her son is away at school, Hester always manages to remain cheerful about her situation—she even manages to retain her sense of humor through it all. I enjoyed the part of the novel where she travels to London and witnesses firsthand the air raids (there's even a brief mention of children in the subways, which ties in nicely to the book I read before this, Barbara Noble's Doreen).

However, she’s not nearly as funny in this book—maybe it’s the war-related stresses that she has to deal with. But Hester is realistic, and that’s why I like her so much, both in this book and Mrs. Tim of the Regiment. I love that she never becomes too dull about her children and their accomplishments (or lack thereof, as witnessed by Bryan and Betty’s letters home). It’s too bad that the Mrs. Tim books are out of print and therefore hard to find; they’re fantastic comfort reads. ( )
3 stem Kasthu | Jul 4, 2012 |
I came across this book browsing a display of what the library calls "forgotten book" (those that have not been checked out in a long time). As it seemed to be about one on my favorite topics - the English home front during WW II, and also in one of my favorite formats - a novel told through the protagonist's diary, I checked it out. And how very glad I am that I did. This book is absolutely delightful.

Our protagonist is Mrs. Tim (Hester) Christie, a regimental wife of an English officer who is down-to-earth, yet possessed of a kindly heart & a good sense of humor. She manages her house amid wartime shortages, volunteers at the "comforts depot," and also tries to manage the irrepressible Pinkie who arrives for an extremely extended visit.

Any reader of early to mid-20th Century British popular fiction will be familiar with most of the books' characters, so the read is both cozy & familiar. Plus there is Mrs. Miniverish message about WWII & Britain's courageous fight against overwhelming odds in the dark days of 1940 & 1941.

This book is not great literature, but it's the literary equivalent of an overstuffed chair in front of a roaring fire on a cold rainy day. ( )
1 stem etxgardener | Jan 30, 2012 |
D. E. Stevenson's second volume in the series, following Mrs. Tim of the Regiment, moves the reader out of the 1930s and into the war years. Major Christie is off in France with the Expeditionary Force and Hester copes with life back on the home front, including brokering peace among the women, running soldiers' aid organizations, and German planes being forced down in their picnic field. Like its predecessor, it is based upon the author's own diaries of those years. Unlike its predecessor, it did not need to be, as she put it, "pepped up" for publication: "…but this time, there was no need to expand the story…for there was enough pep already in my diary for half a dozen books. It is all true."

I enjoyed it very much, a bit more than the first book, in fact. I recognize that the characters are all presented with a bit of soft-focus glamour lighting, but that wasn't uncommon in novels of that era. If you are partial to quiet stories of British life, I recommend this. ( )
7 stem TadAD | Jul 29, 2010 |
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There is so much War News in News Bulletins, in Newspapers, and so much talk about the war that I do not intend to write about it in my diary. Indeed my diary is a sort of escape from the war . . . though it is almost impossible to escape from the anxieties which it brings. Bestselling author D.E. Stevenson's charming fictional alter-ego, Hester Christie-or "Mrs. Tim" as she is affectionately known to friends of her military husband-was first introduced to readers in Mrs. Tim of the Regiment, published in 1932. In 1941, Stevenson brought Mrs. Tim back in this delightful sequel, to lift spirits and boost morale in the early days of World War II. With her husband stationed in France, Hester finds plenty to keep her busy on the Home Front. From her first air raid and a harrowing but hilarious false alarm about a German invasion, to volunteering at the regiment's "Comforts Depot," guiding the romantic destinies of her pretty houseguest and an injured soldier, and making a flying visit to a blacked-out, slightly bedraggled London with its fighting spirit intact, Mrs. Tim does indeed carry on-in inimitable style. Mrs. Tim returns in two subsequent novels, Mrs Tim Gets a Job (1947) and Mrs Tim Flies Home (1952), all back in print for the first time in decades from Furrowed Middlebrow and Dean Street Press. This new edition features an introduction by Alexander McCall Smith. "She admirably preserves her lightness of touch, with a tinge of melancholy added, which perfectly suits the mood of 1940." Glasgow Herald "This is not merely a war book to which cheerfulness keeps breaking in, it is a book of cheerfulness from which the war cannot be kept out . . . Major Tim's amazing escape from Dunkirk is high drama superbly handled, and her word pictures are both lifelike and lively." Manchester Evening News.

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