We That Are Left

304 pages

English language

Published Jan. 12, 2015 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Trade & Reference Publishers.

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5 stars (1 review)

1910 - Jessica and Phyllis Melville have grown up at Ellinghurst, a family estate fraught with secrets. A headstrong beauty, Jessica longs for London -- the glitter and glamour of debutante life -- while bookish Phyllis dreams in vain of attending university. Into their midst walks Oskar Grunewald, a frequent visitor fascinated by the house but alternately tormented and ignored by the Melville children. Oskar seeks refuge in Ellinghurst's enormous library. The Great War arrives to devastate and reshape their world. In a country unrecognizable from the idylls of their youth, the Melville sisters struggle to forge new paths without the guidance of the old rules. But Oskar's life has become entwined with theirs once again, in ways--both immediate and unimaginable -- that will change all of their futures.

8 editions

Superb historical fiction

5 stars

I received a copy of We That Are Left from its publishers, via NetGalley, in exchange for my honest review.

I had We That Are Left on my Kindle for several weeks before I actually got around to reading it, other books that looked as though they would be 'better' floating to the top of my TBR list first. What a mistake! From almost the first page I was gripped by the Edwardian world and lives of the Melville family.

Clark's novel is set during the First World War and the years immediately preceding and following it. This was a time of immense social upheaval in Britain, not just because of the horrific loss of male lives, but also because women began to assert themselves as they had not done before and strict class divides started to crumble. All this is captured here, interestingly, through a cast of mostly spoilt …


  • Sisters, fiction
  • World war, 1914-1918, fiction
  • England, fiction
  • Fiction, historical