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Nella Last’s War

Nella Last


In September 1939, housewife and mother Nella Last began a regular diary that lasted for thirty years.

The account she left of life during the Second world War is moving, fascinating and unique.
While Nella’s younger son joined the army, she and the rest of the family tried to adapt to the transformed rhythms of life in Barrow in Furness, which suffered terribly from enemy bombing raids. Writing each day for the ‘Mass-Observation’ project, Nella grows in confidence as a result of her new work, and her diary entries tell a powerful story about the war years, covering everything from sex to the genuine fear of invasion.
This was the period in which Nella turned fifty, saw her children leave home and reviewed her life and her marriage – which eventually she compared to slavery. This is the war as Nella Last lived it.


Profile Books



Publication Date:

2006 November


195x130mm small paperback