Book 2 in The Surplus Girls series:


The Surplus Girls' Orphans


Manchester, April 1922 

Molly Watson has had enough. Engaged for the past three years to a penny-pinching pedant, she decides she would rather be a surplus girl than marry a man she doesn't truly love. Aware of the need to support herself if she is to remain single, she joins the Miss Heskeths' business school to learn new skills and a whole new world opens up for her.


When she gets a job at St Anthony's Orphanage, she finds herself drawn to the caretaker, Aaron Abrams. But a misunderstanding leaves them at loggerheads and damages her in the eyes of the children she has come to care for so deeply. Can she recover her reputation, her livelihood and her budding romance before it's too late?







Here is the paperback link.


Here is the Kindle link.






Here is the cover of the audio book version of The Surplus Girls' Orphans, which is read by Julia Franklin, who also read The Surplus Girls.


More About The Surplus Girls' Orphans


Have you ever wondered how a book cover comes into being? Click here to read about the development of the book's front cover and the part I played in it.


Click here to be taken to a piece about a writing holiday during which I wrote several chapters of The Surplus Girls' Orphans.


Top to bottom: Kitty Wilson, Jane Cable, Cass Grafton, Kirsten Hesketh and yours truly.



Book Group Questions

1. Do you think Molly is happy at the start of the book? Does Molly think she is happy? What compromises has she had to make?

2. Why is Norris generally seen as good husband material? How do you think Norris views himself? How does he view Molly and their relationship?

3. In the first book, Patience Hesketh was a viewpoint character, ie part of the story was seen through her eyes and her experiences. What difference does it make to this book to have Prudence Hesketh as a viewpoint character? Has it changed your opinion of Prudence?

4. If you have read the first book, what was your opinion of Lawrence Hesketh then? What have you learned about him in this book through what happens to Lucy?

5. What do Vivienne and Molly see in one another that makes them become friends?

6. Is Molly right to take Danny to Southport to see his dad? Why/why not? Is Mrs Rostron right to dismiss her?

7. After living under his brother Thad’s thumb, is it inevitable that Jacob won’t get free of Shirl? Is Jacob a natural victim or is he just unlucky?

8. How does the bond grow between Danny and Aaron?

9. In what ways is the theme of ‘family’ explored in the story?

10. In what ways is the theme of ‘independence’ explored?