James Villas Book Club

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Adele Parks Steps Back Into 1920 With Her New Novel


Midnight, 1920 brings a new year of hope, peace and parties. Only, following World War I there aren’t enough men to go round. Spare Brides is the story of four young, glamorous – but unexpectedly alone – women. They’re scared, truthful, brilliant, flawed, sexy, hopeful, hopeless, lost and found. They’re like us.

Sarah’s husband is a hero – but a dead one; her life will never be the same. She’s a single mother now, daunted but coping with great dignity and ferocious courage.

It was always hard enough for lumpy Beatrice to shine next to her more beautiful, dazzling friends; quiet sincerity doesn’t often cut it on a dance floor crammed full of absolute jazzing flappers. Now her chances of finding someone to love her have been blown to bits on the battlefields.


Adele Park's Spare Brides - James Villas Book Club

Meet the spare brides in Adele Parks’ new novel

Ava however relishes the freedom of being single. She wants a career, although she has to struggle with deep-seated prejudice against women in the business place and against women who are sexually confident, financially independent and emotionally secure. I loved writing Ava; she’s spirited and intoxicating. Women like her forged the way for us.

Lydia is my heroine however, like many of my heroines she comes with a health warning: she’s not instantly likeable, she’s certainly not wise or self-aware. Her husband managed to secure a desk job during the war and so has survived intact; instead of appreciating their good fortune, Lydia can only see his cowardliness; she can’t forgive him for not standing up with his generation.

Enter Edgar, a damaged, angry soldier. He is gorgeous, but unknown. Trouble.

It was an incredibly glamorous time; a time of sexual and romantic experimentation. Spare Brides has at its heart a profound love affair. It is about passion, longing and jealousy.

Spare Brides book cover

Spare Brides, Adele’s latest novel, is out now in paperback

Adele Parks has published thirteen novels, all of which have been top ten bestsellers. Adele has spent her adult life in Italy, Botswana and London until 2005 when she moved to Guildford, where she now lives with her husband and son. In 2011 she was a judge for the Costa Book Awards.

Her latest, Spare Brides, has been described by Marie Claire magazine as ‘dramatic and swooningly romantic’ and is available now in paperback and ebook.

If this book appeals to you, why not have a read and let us know what you think of it?

The author of Spare Brides, Adele Parks

Author Adele Parks (© Jim Parks)


Vicky is a Team Bookends, Headline Publishing at James Villa Holidays.

My job means I’m surrounded by one of my favourite things: books! At Bookends we love...

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