Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Radio Girls by Sarah-Jane Stratford

Radio Girls
by Sarah-Jane Stratford

Find out more about this book and author:
Twitter @stratfordsj

Release date: June 14, 2016
Publisher: NAL
Genre: Historical, Feminism, Women's Fiction
Paperback: 384 pages
Rating: 4

First sentence(s):
She ran, weaving in handout of the startled pedestrians, but her pursuer was still close on her heels.

The Great War is over, and change is in the air, in this novel that brings to life the exciting days of early British radio…and one woman who finds her voice while working alongside the brilliant women and men of the BBC.

London, 1926. American-raised Maisie Musgrave is thrilled to land a job as a secretary at the upstart British Broadcasting Corporation, whose use of radio—still new, strange, and electrifying—is captivating the nation. But the hectic pace, smart young staff, and intimidating bosses only add to Maisie’s insecurity.

Soon, she is seduced by the work—gaining confidence as she arranges broadcasts by the most famous writers, scientists, and politicians in Britain. She is also caught up in a growing conflict between her two bosses, John Reith, the formidable Director-General of the BBC, and Hilda Matheson, the extraordinary director of the hugely popular Talks programming, who each have very different visions of what radio should be. Under Hilda’s tutelage, Maisie discovers her talent, passion, and ambition. But when she unearths a shocking conspiracy, she and Hilda join forces to make their voices heard both on and off the air…and then face the dangerous consequences of telling the truth for a living.

My two-bits:

I enjoyed this coming of age story with a female perspective during the time between the world wars.

A snapshot of the time period was captured well and it was fascinating to learn about the world and how it was portrayed via radio.

Loved the focus on women and their struggles with traditional and career life choices and challenges.

The behind the scenes drama and workings at the BBC was also interesting to learn about.

Also, treated to mention of Selfridges department store.

About the author:
Sarah-Jane Stratford grew up in Los Angeles with a deep love of theatre and literature. After earning a bachelor's degree in history at UC Santa Cruz, she then obtained a master's degree in medieval history at the University of York in England, where she wrote a thesis about women in the manorial court system which gave her a new appreciation for the modern era.

On moving to New York, she wrote her first two novels, The Midnight Guardian and The Moonlight Brigade (St Martins Press). She has also written articles and essays for a range of publications, including The Guardian, The Boston Globe, The Los Angeles Review of Books, Marie-Claire, Bitch, Slate, Salon, Guernica, and BOMB.

In addition to theatre and activism, Sarah-Jane enjoys knitting (when the project is submitting to her will) and wandering around interesting places.


* review copy courtesy of book tour sponsored by Penguin Random House


  1. This sounds great! The time between the wars is so interesting :)

  2. The backdrop of Post WWI Britain and the radio is already neat, but a mystery too. ;) Definitely going on the wish list.


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