Set just after World War II, Peace, Perfect Peace is a poignant and humorous tale about women readjusting and rebuilding their lives after the upheavals of war. Frances Smallwood has returned from service in the A.T.S. and is staying with her mother-in-law Joanna, who has cared for her two children during the war. Tensions grow, however, as Frances comes to believe Joanna is undermining her relationship with her children for her own selfish reasons. Clare, a young novelist friend of Joanna’s, is also pulled into the conflict as she deals with her own writer’s block and romantic difficulties.
Packed with fascinating details about life in the months just after the war’s end – rationing, barbed wire entanglements on the beach, and the omnipresence of dust from bombed out buildings (not to mention the difficulties of buying a dress) – Kamm’s novel also serves up complex, multi-dimensional characters who might be our own friends and neighbours.
Dean Street Press, 9781913054236