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Reviewed by Jack Magnus for Readers' Favorite
Another Chance: No Place to Call Home is a literary fiction novella written by Joseph Woodward. The Woodward family name hailed from London, England, where Ernest Woodward was born and lived until he was seventeen years old. He was born in 1889 to Ruby and Malcolm Woodward, and Ernest had an older sister, named Flossie. Ruby’s health had steadily declined, however, and she died when Ernest was quite young. The five-year-old was doted upon by his father, Flossie, and Miss Adams, who acted as a mother to the two children and took care of the family when Mr. Woodward was away on business. When Ernest was 12, Malcolm met Catherine. She too had lost her husband, and the shared grief was a starting point in a friendship that quickly blossomed into something more. Malcolm was sure that her children and his would make a grand family, and his large house in town would ably fit them all. But there was something off about Catherine, something Malcolm’s children and Miss Adams instantly noted, even if Malcolm was oblivious to it.
Joseph Woodward introduces what he calls the “missing link” in his family history -- those years his ancestor spent growing up in London, England before he emigrated to the United States and began working on the Ohio River. I was most impressed by the psychological insights the author displays in examining the life Ernest had before his father met Catherine and noting how it changed after she was installed in the household, and he was no longer considered the young master of the house. Another Chance is well-written and the author’s research into the culture and lifestyle of business-class Londoners at the time gives this historical fiction authenticity. His characters are well developed and credible, and the plot kept me involved and engaged at all times. Another Chance: No Place to Call Home: Lost Between the Continents, Book 1 is most highly recommended.