Interview with Bethany Jane Askew
Author of Counting The Days
Bethany Askew is the author of eight novels: The Time Before, The World Within, Out of Step, Counting the Days, Poppy’s Seed, I Know You, Don’t I?, Three Extraordinary Years and The Two Saras (Runner Up in the Bookends Prize, Lakeland Book Of the Year 2021)
Bethany likes to write about women’s lives, their role in society, their position as wife and mother and the impact of marriage, children and divorce on family dynamics.
Two further women’s fiction novels are due to be published in 2022 and 2023 and she is currently working on a new one.
Bethany lives in Somerset where she was born and brought up. She is married and has four grown-up children and seven grandchildren. In her spare time she enjoys reading, listening to music, walking, the theatre, voluntary work and dancing.
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My parents-in-law liked to keep the letters they wrote to each other. When they died, there were several boxes of them, the first written in 1932, the innocent flirtations of an eighteen year old girl to a seventeen year old boy, the last in 1946, from an army officer to the wife he had been separated from for five years. I couldn't bring myself to throw them away, my brother in law said, I'm sure there's a story here somewhere. And here it is: the story of John and Janie Askew, an ordinary couple living through extraordinary times. They could be your parents or grandparents: the innocent courtship in the 1930's, marriage and settling down to family life, then the hardship and separation through war. A unique insight into life in England and on active service overseas during World War Two and the story of a love that crossed counties and continents and went on to last a lifetime.