1944, north London. Fifteen-year-old Frankie Lewis sometimes thinks the war will go on for ever. But one foggy night in the blackout his life takes an extraordinary turn. Inveigled by his mates into playing a vindictive prank on the German-Jewish widow who lives off the Seven Sisters Road, Frankie finds himself hauled across her doorstep into a world of books and culture.
Fascinated by Elsa’s stories of life before the war and with her late husband – a British officer – young Frankie soon becomes good friends with Elsa, helping her out in a chaotic bric-a-brac shop and confiding his troubles to her – from his crush on pretty Highbury schoolgirl Margaret to his sister’s unwanted pregnancy.
So, when Elsa dies of a heart attack, Frankie is devastated. He is almost as shocked to discover that Elsa has left her shop to him – a legacy that her brother-in-law is determined to deny him…
‘A warm, poignant story’ Plymouth Evening Telegraph, January 1994
‘Never a dull moment in this charming story’ Romford and Hornchurch Recorde, December 1993