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The Mazzard Tree

Clayton, Marcia

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It is mid-Winter in1880 and life is harsh in the remote Devon countryside. When Annie Carter's father Tom dies of consumption, her mother Sabina is left with seven mouths to feed and the family soon face the workhouse. To save them from starvation, Annie steals vegetables from the Manor House garden, risking jail or transportation. She is watched by Robert, the son of the Lord of Hartford Manor, but far from turning her in, he befriends her.
Annie introduces Robert to a very different world to the one he knows and he is fascinated by the life she leads. Difficult though it is, they begin to spend time together and soon develop feelings they know have no future.
Harry Rudd, the village blacksmith, has long admired Annie and when he proposes, her mother urges her to accept. She reminds Annie that she will never be allowed to marry Robert. Harry is a good man and Annie is fond of him. Her head knows what she should do, but will her heart listen?

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