It's a cold winter's night in 1906 but nothing can dampen the high spirits of Constance Bannerman and her fellow skivvy and best friend, Nella. For tomorrow, Constance can escape her life of drudgery at Doctor Sowerby's home in Newcastle by marrying her handsome sweetheart, the prosperous John Edington. But Constance's last night of servitude is to end in terror. As a final act of spite, Mrs Sowerby throws her out of the house late that evening where she is met by the doctor's dissolute son, Gerald. In the front yard, surrounded by freezing fog, Gerald attacks and rapes her. Distraught and unsure of what to do, Constance marries John the next day with a heavy heart. She cannot tell John what has happened, for his is a respectable family, and shame will not allow her to reveal the truth to Nella. But the worst is yet to come, for John Edington himself has a shocking secret that will make Constance feel more alone than ever...
Benita Brown was born and brought up in Newcastle by her English mother, the youngest of thirteen children, and her Indian father, who came to Newcastle to study medicine and fell in love with the place and the people. After meeting her husband while she was at drama school in London, Benita returned to her home town and worked as a teacher and broadcaster before becoming a full-time writer, publishing many much-loved novels. Sadly, Counting the Days was Benita's last book, as she passed away in April 2014 following a sudden illness. She will be greatly missed.
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