What makes a 1930s society girl become a farmer? Answer: the Second World War.
This is the story of my mother, Frances Donaldson, a privileged young woman giving her all in wartime. With her soldier husband, Jack, far away and two young children to care for, she bought a farm in Warwickshire and determined to live off it. Could an emotionally fragile young mother survive the ordeal?
During six long years of war she learned to farm, battling with the antagonism of the men she was trying to manage, vulnerable to the demands of the Ministry of Agriculture while coping with small children and no money. War was a test of relationships, character, and endurance.\
A Woman's War tells how she conquered WWII. An emotional tale from riches to rags, from joy to sorrow, and, at the end of the war together again with Jack, rejoicing.
Frances Donaldson would not have called herself a feminist, but her strong character, independence, and determination make this almost a feminist tract, showing in detail how much a woman can achieve in difficult circumstances. She not only showed determination but took on physical tasks which most modern men would find difficult if not impossible.
She overcame the opposition of the members of the man's world in which she found herself and rose to top the ranks of farmers in the war, to be invited to broadcast to Britain and America and to write two books about it - working at night after a full day's hard activity on the farm. Her letters to her husband Jack are sometimes tearful, often sad but in the end the letters of a fighter, a perfectionist and an achiever.