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  • Writer's pictureLiza Stirlinglass

Strong Women - Shh... It's Our Secret

Thankfully the days of women depicted as damsels in distress in most literary fiction is over and #LizzieChantree, in her new book - Shh... It's Our Secret - scheduled for launch on May 6th 2021 introduces us to a new character, Violet, who despite her shy and introverted nature learns to speak up for herself and what she believes in.

When I was growing up through the sixties, the women in my immediate life appeared unremarkable. Their lives were governed by raising their families, keeping house, doing what was expected of them, obeying the rules and social norms of the day, putting themselves last. Of course, looking back I can see they were much more than what I saw from the outside. They had survived the blitz, grieved over friends, lovers and husbands lost to both world wars, strove for freedom. And as the age of Aquarius dawned they participated in the sudden and radical changes of what was expected of them and challenged what they expected of themselves.

In this past year, the year of Covid, it has been women have shouldered the burden. Social care workers, nurses, shop workers, all mostly women, have been tirelessly on the front line of the pandemic, homeschooling children, caring for others left without care resources and maintaining the status quo. Yet discussions about the role of women still abound, on social media platforms, in newspapers. Recognition of our status as equals globally, has a long way to go.

In 'Shh... It's Our Secret' - the author, Lizzie Chantree, focuses on the life of a young woman who has to overcome what she believes about herself and the role she has been dealt in life. Writing about Violet, Lizzie brings to life the reality of the challenges that many women face now, as they did in the past, when I was growing up.

Lizzie's character, Violet, has been dealt some blows by life. She is determined to show her friends and her sister that she can be a strong person and successful in her chosen career, managing a run-down café and bar.

The café bar regulars have become Violet’s family, following the loss of her own parents, and she fights to persuade the new owners of the café that the regulars should still be a part of the re branded bar’s make-up. Three feisty pensioners and some untrained bar staff don’t really appeal to Kai, the new owner but he soon learns why they mean so much to Violet.

Violet shies away from conflict. She has a secret that could change the fate of the whole community, but to share it means that she has to believe in herself, to step out of the shadows and find her voice.

Like many works of fiction, the traits of Violet's personality can be likened to the lives of the women we know and to ourselves. Violet's struggles to stand up for what she believes represent the struggles of many women today and those who have gone before.

Lizzie, the author, is a fabulous role model of what's possible. An International bestselling author Lizzie Chantree, started her own business at the age of 18 and became one of Fair Play London and The Patent Office’s British Female Inventors of the Year. She writes books full of friendship and laughter, about women with unusual businesses, who are stronger than they realise.

If you want to find out more about Lizzie and the women she writes about, here are some of her social media links. Shh... It's Our Secret, published on May 6th will be available at:

Social media links:

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