Last Train Home – a short story by Davina Blake
Set in 1945 at the end of WW2, – level-crossing-keeper Maisie Harris can only look forward to a lonely Christmas, stuck in her signal box, as the trains take other people home to their families and friends. This Christmas however, she is in for a surprise.
This is a gentle, heartfelt gem of a story, about a young woman working in a lonely job whilst the men are away at war. She has little chance to find love and seems to believe she won’t, after all, the men returning from war are probably all spoken for, and she is shy. When a small group of passengers get stranded after their train is stuck in a snow drift, there is no choice but to spend Christmas in Maisie’s cottage. Among this group are two young, single men, free and available; will Maisie find love?
Maisie is a lovely character, and I warmed to her straightaway. The author has conjured up the atmosphere of the period very well, and painted an exquisite picture of Maisie’s home and the snow-bound winter landscape. Even though this is a short story, she has given the characters enough shade and light to make them real and familiar. Their individual behaviour and interactions with each other and with Maisie, are entertaining and revealing. This may be a short story, but it is packed with all that is needed to engage the reader and fulfill their appetite for a good story.
I highly recommend Last Train Home for everyone., but if you are busy and find it difficult to fit reading into your schedule, then its perfect. Read it on your daily commute, or during your lunch break – stress free reading. Enjoy.