Tagged with romance

Mary Stewart’s The Ivy Tree (1961) – another review

Book review by Alice C: A strange, unexpected tale. Unexpected in that I’d never read any Mary Stewart before and I’d expected a rural love story (boring) but instead I got a Russian Doll of twists and turns, plots within plots, mistaken identity, impersonation, attempted murder, death by horse and beyond..

The Ivy Tree (1961) by Mary Stewart

Book review by Frances S: The Ivy Tree by Mary Stewart was first published in 1961, slightly later than the usual Reading 1900-1950 period but otherwise well qualified for the Popular Fiction canon. I recently came across, in a totally different context, a current online entry by literary agent Caroline Wood. Wood says that she … Continue reading

Wildfire at Midnight by Mary Stewart (1956)

Book review by Mary P: This was Mary Stewart’s second novel. It is written in the first person, so throughout we have the viewpoint of Gianetta. She is a model, divorced, and making her own living in London. Feeling under pressure her family suggest that she takes a holiday at a hotel in Skye. When … Continue reading

Mary Stewart – My Brother Michael (1959)

Book review by Jane Varley: ‘The contemporary thriller at its very best’, wrote the Guardian. ‘The result of my own visits to Greece and the impact of that wonderful country on a mind steeped in the classics, My Brother Michael was my love affair with Greece.’ Mary Stewart When I was in the first flush … Continue reading

The Secret Kingdom (1938) by Walter Greenwood

Book review by Chris Hopkins. Walter Greenwood’s father was a hairdresser and by the time he married Elizabeth Matilda Walter he had opened his own hairdresser’s shop (‘Tom’s Hairdressing Saloon’) at 56 Ellor Street, Salford (the premises are pictured in the frontispiece to Greenwood’s memoir, There Was A Time, 1967 and also on the Salford University … Continue reading

Helen of Four Gates (1917) by Ethel Carnie Holdsworth

Ethel Carnie Holdsworth’s previous novel, Miss Nobody (1913), had not been a commercial success, and that may be one of the reasons why her new publisher, Herbert Jenkins, chose to issue this one anonymously as by ‘An Ex Mill Girl’. Some reviewers found the pseudonym confusing; it suggested that they would be reading an account … Continue reading

Pomfret Towers (1938) by Angela Thirkell

This is a comic novel about a group of families in Barsetshire – the imaginary county that Angela Thirkell took over from Anthony Trollope. Much of it happens during an eventful weekend party at Pomfret Towers, home of Lord Pomfret, whose rudeness is a constant source of embarrassment to others and delight for the reader. … Continue reading