Book reviews, Historical fiction

The Foundling by Stacey Halls – Book Review

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PUBLISHERS BLURB 

A mother’s love knows no bounds. . .

London, 1754. Six years after leaving her newborn, Clara, at London’t Foundling Hospital, young Bess Bright returns to reclaim the illegitimate daughter she has never really known. Dreading the worst – that Clara has died in care – the last thing she expects to hear is that her daughter has already been reclaimed. Her life is turned upside down as she tries to find out who has taken her little girl – and why.

Les than a mile from Bess’ lodgings in a quiet town house, a wealthy widow barely ventures outside. When her close friend – an ambitious doctor at the Foundling Hospital – persuades her to hire a nursemaid for her young daughter, she is hesitant to welcome someone new into her home and her life. But her past is threatening to catch up with her – and will soon tear her carefully constructed world apart.

Set against the vibrant backdrop of Georgian London, ‘THE LOST ORPHAN’ explores families and secrets, class and power, and how the pull of motherhood cuts across them all.

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MY REVIEW 

Bess gives birth to her daughter, Clara, but as an unmarried woman from a poor background she makes the heartbreaking decision to leave her baby at the Foundling Hospital. She intends to collect her once her situation improves…..hopefully.

It takes Bess 6 years, but she has finally saved enough money to be able to collect Clara. However, when she arrives she is told the baby had been collected by its mother the day after she had been left there.

Utterly distraught, Bess can not understand who would have taken her baby and why…

Will Bess ever see her daughter again?

Well, what can I say? This is beautifully written historical fiction at its finest. It tells of the differences in social status, the huge gap between the wealthy and the poor and the challenges they face on a daily basis. It also tells of motherhood and just how far a mother will go for her child.

Both heartbreaking and heartwarming.

If you love historical fiction with an emotional heart, you’ll adore this.

Thank you to Tracy and Compulsive Readers for the opportunity to participate in this blog tour,  for the promotional materials and a free copy of the ebook. This is my honest, unbiased review.

Thank you also to Pigeonhole for the brilliant, interactive daily staves and the ability to participate with other readers.

You can buy a copy here : https://amzn.to/3bJJU7B

Book reviews, Gothic horror, Horror, Supernatural

The Garden Of Bewitchment by Catherine Cavendish – Book Review

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PUBLISHERS BLURB 

From the author of The Haunting of Henderson Close praised by Booklist, The British Fantasy Society, Ladies of Horror Fiction and many more!

In 1893, Evelyn and Claire leave their home in a Yorkshire town for life in a rural retreat on their beloved moors. But when a strange toy garden mysteriously appears, a chain of increasingly terrifying events is unleashed. The Garden of Bewitchment is all too real and something is threatening the lives and sanity of the women.

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MY REVIEW 

Evelyn and Claire are twins, the death of their father left them wealthy women. Something frowned upon by society and the neighbours, as two unmarried women in their 30’s is scandalous in 1893.

So, they decide to move to a small cottage near Haworth, on the Yorkshire moors. Close to their beloved Brontë family home. Claire is particularly obsessed by Branwell Brontë as she feels him close to her and has conversations with him…he talks to her.

Soon after they’ve settled in, Evelyn meets Matthew, a visitor to the area and they soon become friends. He tells her a tale of a game he found as a child, The Garden Of Bewitchment. This board game had a miniature house, trees and items to make a perfect little garden, but something evil tried to escape, so Matthew ran away and left the game in an attic never to be seen again.

Claire, then finds the game mysteriously appear in her bedroom and things get dark…….

This is a gothic, supernatural tale with a really creepy feel. Just what is trying to trap people in its game world?  A game of Jumanji from the imagination of Poe or Lovecraft. A brilliantly written, atmospheric and goosebumpy read. You’ll never look at a doll’s house in the same way again! Creepy stuff.

Thank you to Anne Cater and Random Things Tours for the opportunity to participate in this blog tour,  for the promotional materials and a free copy of the book. This is my honest, unbiased review.

 

You can buy a copy here:  https://amzn.to/2UUE7q5

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR 

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Cat first started writing when someone thrust a pencil into her hand. Unfortunately as she could neither read nor write properly at the time, none of her stories actually made much sense. However as she grew up, they gradually began to take form and, at the tender age of nine or ten, she sold her dolls’ house, and various other toys to buy her first typewriter – an Empire Smith Corona. She hasn’t stopped bashing away at the keys ever since, although her keyboard of choice now belongs to her laptop.

The need to earn a living led to a varied career in sales, advertising and career guidance but Cat is now the full-time author of a number of supernatural, ghostly, haunted house and Gothic horror novels and novellas, including The Haunting of Henderson Close, the Nemesis of the Gods trilogy –Wrath of the Ancients, Waking the Ancients, Damned by the Ancients – The Devil’s Serenade, Dark Avenging Angel, The Pendle Curse, Saving Grace Devine and Linden Manor.

She lives north of Liverpool with her longsuffering husband and black cat.

 

FLAME TREE PRESS is the new fiction imprint of Flame Tree Publishing. Launched recently in 2018 the list brings together brilliant new authors and the more established; the award winners, and exciting, original voices.

 

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