Tuesday, 16 June 2020

Book review : The Strange Adventures of H - Sarah Burton

If there is a book out there that is perfect for reading in our current situation, it has to be The Strange Adventures of H by Sarah Burton. It focuses on a character who survived another similarly bleak situation, the Great Plague of London in 1665. There's something strangely reassuring in reading about a character who faced an even bleaker situation than the one we are currently experiencing and came out of the other side, moving on to better times. 

The central character, H, definitely had a harder time than most of us, as she lived in a society that was incredibly restrictive, particularly for the fairer sex. Having lost her parents as a young girl, she started off her life journey at her kindly aunt's house in London, but this happy period was sadly short-lived. A lecherous cousin left her pregnant and cast out on the streets, just as the city was closing in on itself to face the new threat of the plague.

H is not one to sit back and lick her wounds though. Whatever life throws at her, she has an unconquerable desire to not just survive but to thrive. She reminded me very much of a heroine from a Dickensian novel, with her witty comebacks and absolutely appealing ability to work around her foes. Despite the olde worlde setting, she is in many ways a modern heroine. She will do whatever it takes to find the destiny that she thinks she deserves.

The book is written by Dr Sarah Burton, an Oxbridge professor whose interest in history and the position of women in society both come together in this novel. She wrote her PhD on ‘The public woman’: An investigation of the actress/whore analogy 1660-1700 and this is very much the sense that comes through in reading the book. I loved the fact that the book gave me a real sense of what it was like to live in such times, while providing the odd unexpected belly laugh too !

star rating : 4.5/5

ISBN (Paperback): 9781789551266 
ISBN (Ebook): 9781789551273
Price: £8.99 (Paperback) £4.99 (Ebook) 
Extent: 272 pages
Format: 198x129mm
 Markets: World English
Translation rights: No

Disclosure : I received a review copy of the book.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...