Title: Her Sweetest Downfall Author: Kellie Wallace Genre: Historical Fiction Publisher: Blue Tulip Publishing
At the height of the London Blitz, Viola Craft, a sexually repressed young woman is trapped in a loveless marriage to her God fearing husband Vernon. She spends her days working in her mother's dress shop while Vernon pulls the dead from the rubble with his rescue crew.
Their marriage is turbulent and Viola feels pressured to bear a child. After failed attempts, Vernon believes she's barren and alienates himself from their marriage.
One night during an air raid, she meets alluring German born Kristoff Richter. They make an instant connection. He's young, good looking and emphatic. They embark on an illicit affair that leads to tragic consequences.
Viola didn’t want to leave until she was certain Gertrude was safe. But when a wave of people ran down the street in panic, she knew it was time to go. They exited the flat and ran back towards her home. Viola looked over her shoulder as she jogged, letting out a scream at the sight of planes descending towards them.
The roar in her ears intensified, and she stumbled as an explosion rocked the ground. Screams echoed off the buildings as gunfire roared up the street, sending chunks of brick and concrete into the air like flying projectiles.
Viola covered her head with both hands and ran as hard as she could. Beside her, Lori struggled in her heels, limping like she was wounded.
“I need to stop,” she screamed. “One of my heels is broken.”
Viola reached out for her hand and gripped it tight. “Don’t worry about that. The flat isn’t far. I can see it. Run faster!”
Enemy fire flew up the street in a wave of destruction, chewing up concrete, parked automobiles and innocent victims trying to flee. The noise was deafening, and Viola couldn’t hear the words coming out of Lori’s mouth.
Then she was yanked downwards, landing hard on one knee. The pull on her hand released, and she turned to where Lori once stood. Her friend lay dead, wide-eyed on the ground, blood pooling from open wounds on her body. Viola shrieked and fell backwards onto a pile of debris. “Lori! No, no!”
The sound of explosions averted her gaze to the sky. A formation of planes headed towards the horizon, dropping little black dots onto the city below them. Over the ringing in her ears, she heard the repetitive boom, boom, boom as each bomb made impact. Viola collapsed to the ground and wept, listening to the chatter of survivors exiting their shelters to the horror that awaited them.