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The Fascination by Essie Fox #Review #Giveaway

   Today be prepared for a dark, Victorian gothic novel! The Fascination by Essie Fox is published on June 22nd by Orenda . For the chance to win a print copy of The Fascination see the foot of this post for details. Victorian England. A world of rural fairgrounds and glamorous London theatres. A world of dark secrets and deadly obsessions… Twin sisters Keziah and Tilly Lovell are identical in every way, except that Tilly hasn't grown a single inch since she was five. Coerced into promoting their father's quack elixir as they tour the country fairgrounds, at the age of fifteen the girls are sold to a mysterious Italian known as ‘Captain’. Theo is an orphan, raised by his grandfather, Lord Seabrook, a man who has a dark interest in anatomical freaks and other curiosities … particularly the human kind. Resenting his grandson for his mother’s death in childbirth, when Seabrook remarries and a new heir is produced, Theo is forced to leave home without a penny to his

A Widow's Vow by Rachel Brimble #Review


Today's historical fiction takes us to Victorian England and Bath. Published by Aria on September 10th, A Widow's Vow is the first in a new saga series by Rachel Brimble. 

From grieving widow...

1851. After her merchant husband saved her from a life of prostitution, Louisa Hill was briefly happy as a housewife in Bristol. But then a constable arrives at her door. Her husband has been found hanged in a Bath hotel room, a note and a key to a property in Bath the only things she has left of him. And now the debt collectors will come calling.

To a new life as a madam.

Forced to leave everything she knows behind, Louisa finds more painful betrayals waiting for her in the house in Bath. Left with no means of income, Louisa knows she has nothing to turn to but her old way of life. But this time, she'll do it on her own terms – by turning her home into a brothel for upper class gentleman. And she's determined to spare the girls she saves from the street the horrors she endured in the past.

Enlisting the help of Jacob Jackson, a quiet but feared boxer, to watch over the house, Louisa is about to embark on a life she never envisaged. Can she find the courage to forge this new path?

A Widow's Vow is the first in a gripping and gritty new Victorian saga series from Rachel Brimble. You won't be able to put it down.

My Thoughts

Plunged into Victorian Bath, you get to see a section of society which is not often featured. An underclass of prostitutes and shady characters co-exist alongside the prosperous middle classes and at times, on the surface, are indistinguishable from the respectable citizens. This is the first in a trilogy and you are introduced to three women who are all surviving despite everything. A Widow's Vow centres on Louisa and Jacob who both have huge trust issues, following difficult childhoods. 

    Because of her past life, Louisa is determined to retain her independence and to set up a brothel which she will run in the interests of its staff. The three women, Louisa, Nancy and Octavia form a tight household, a surrogate family even and I am sure that future books will shed more light on their backgrounds. This is an enjoyable historical novel which has a strong sense of time and place and which poses some interesting questions about the place of women in society, their right to establish their own lives as individuals, rather than as goods 'owned'  by men. 

In short:  Sharply drawn characters and a great sense of the period.

About the Author

Rachel lives with her husband and their two daughters in a small town near Bath, England. She is the author of over 20 published novels including the Pennington’s department store series (Aria Fiction) and the Templeton Cove Stories (Harlequin).

Her next project is a Victorian trilogy set in a Bath brothel which she recently signed with Aria Fiction. The series will feature three heroines determined to change their lives and those of other women. The first book. A Widow’s Vow is due for release in September and available for Amazon preorder now.

Rachel is a member of the Romantic Novelists Association and has thousands of social media followers all over the world.

To sign up for her newsletter (a guaranteed giveaway every month!), click  here.

You can follow Rachel here:|   Website  |  Blog   |  Twitter     |  Instagram  

Book links:  Amazon UK   |  Amazon US

Aria links: Website  |  Twitter   |  Fiction   |  Instagram 

Thanks to Rachel Brimble and Aria for a copy of the book and a place on the tour.

                                      Be sure to check out the rest of the tour!




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