Skip to main content


Far from Home by T A Williams #Review #BeneathItalianSkiesBook3

  As ever, I am delighted to feature another romance by T A Williams , set in beautiful Italy. Far from Home was published by Canelo on May 9th. The secrets of the past will unlock her future… Working in the fast-paced foreign exchange market in Canary Wharf, Amy never expected her job to drive her to collapse. With her doctor advising she take a month off work, when Amy receives a solicitor’s letter informing her of a surprise inheritance in Italy, the timing couldn’t be more perfect. But who on earth has left her a house in the sleepy Tuscan hills? As she gets to know the town and its inhabitants, Amy discovers more about the mysterious man who named her in his will. Shocking family secrets come to light, leaving Amy questioning the life she knew. The town of Sant’Antonio holds more than just secrets. Here, Amy meets Adam, a renowned TV journalist whose documentaries take him to dangerous places. But as their attraction grows, so do Amy’s worries. Her life is in England,

The Sewing Room Girl by Susanna Bavin #Review

 I am delighted to be featuring Susanna Bavin's historical novel, The Sewing Room Girl on the blog today. You can read my review of another of Susanna's  novels set in Manchester, The Poor Relation, here.

Born into service, sixteen-year-old Juliet Harper has always idolised her mother, Agnes. But Agnes is haunted by what could have been, and the glamorous life she might have lived if she stayed in Manchester rather than settling down in the Lancashire moorland with her husband. Life takes another unexpected turn when Juliet's father suddenly dies. Agnes's reputation as a seamstress leads to her being taken on by local landowners the Drysdales, where she is proud to work. But it will be a bumpy road for both of them as they settle in to their new lives. Will Juliet ever be able to choose her own path? And what will become of them when Agnes falls ill?

My Thoughts
 Set in the 1890's, this novel takes you from the more rural Chorley, into the city of Manchester, in the 1890's. You see at first hand, the effect of the class system on the characters' lives and how some people's entitlement blighted others' lives. Agnes emerges as a courageous and determined individual, who comes to realise her talent as a seamstress and designer is the path out of poverty. At times, it is a torrid tale. Although women have a subservient role in socirty, taking status from their husbands, or even their employer, it is not just the male characters who get to rule the roost. Agnes comes up against some driven women who thought nothing of using her to get what they want. You have to feel for Agnes as she tries to assert her independence.

    The period and setting are painstakingly researched and the full cast of characters are well drafted and credible. This can rightly be described as a pageturner. It kept me reading through all the twists and turns of the story. Agnes' friendship with Cecily is a light in the darkness at times and such a contrast to the hostility she sees from so many others.

In short: Manchester in the late 1890's comes alive. 

About the Author

 Susanna Bavin lives on the beautiful North Wales coast with her husband and their two rescue cats. She is originally from Chorlton-cum-Hardy in Manchester, where her family has lived for several generations and which provides the setting for her family sagas.

Susanna Bavin also writes as Polly Heron.

You can follow Susanna here: Website  |  Twitter 

Book link: Amazon UK 

Thanks to Susanna Bavin for a copy of the book.


Popular Posts