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Summary

Some memories fade, some refuse to let you go.

Rhoda Middleton suspects her husband Peter is having an affair. But when Rhoda tracks the mysterious woman down, she finds she is not his lover after all, but the wife of his wartime best friend, Archie Foster.

There is only one problem - Rhoda has never even heard of Archie Foster.

Hurt and bewildered by this betrayal of trust, Rhoda tries to find out why Peter has kept his friendship with Archie hidden for so long.

Taking us on a journey from the atmospheric filming of the romantic wartime classic, Brief Encounter, to the extraordinary Great March of prisoners of war through snow-bound Germany in 1945, this is a novel of friendship, hope, and how in the end, it is the small things that enable love to survive. 

BookViral Millennium Awards Best in Genre

©2014 Deborah Swift/Davina Blake (P)2017 Deborah Swift/Davina Blake

Critic reviews

"For lovers of history and drama this is a perfect way to spend a Sunday afternoon." (BookGeeks)

What listeners say about Past Encounters

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Enjoyable & well read

I found the story interesting & well read. It chops about a bit but this helps to build the story of different relationships, during the war and afterwards.

The Narrator was easy to listen to and I thought suited the storyline well.

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Not as good as her other book 'The occupation '.

Disappointed and slow, the storyline was good and should have been more engaging than it was. Certainly wasn’t as good as I thought it would be, struggled to finish it . Would have returned it, if I could.
Positives include: Narrator was good, had the perfect accent for that region . Also I lived in Morecambe when I was young, so references to wartime and 50's Morecambe and Carnforth were pretty accurate.

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That was amazing 🧡

loved the story, the characters and the narrator.
Deborah Swift is a very talented, intelligent writer, this book will stay with you for a very long time, for me it started of slow but, my goodness, I got to the end too quick and didn't want it to finish. thought provoking, sad, happy and everything in-between. Fully recommend the book/Audible.

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  • Kindle Customer
  • 17-07-20

Touching

A sad and touching story with a touch of hope. Very well written with complex and realistic characters. I liked it that the story started 10 years after the war and that a reader was discovering the impact of the war on their present lives. Peter ' s war time memories were heartbreaking, his friendship with Archie and loyalty to his wife were a testament to his characters. I was especially touched by Rhoda 's observation that it was easier to lose a person than a dream. Clinging to a memory of a beautiful dream didn't allow her to value what good she had in her life.

Stevie Zimmerman 's beautiful narration made this book even more poignant. Inability to communicate, unspoken feelings between the couple were wonderfully underlined by her ability to convey emotions.
Highly recommended.