How far would she go to save her marriage? How far would he go to keep a promise?
1900. Eighteen-year old Hephzibah Wildman's world is turned upside down when she loses her parents in a tragic accident. Homeless and destitute, she must leave the security of the Oxford college where her stepfather was Dean, to earn her living as a governess at Ingleton Hall. Befriending Merritt Nightingale, the local parson and drawn to the handsome Thomas Egdon, she starts to build a new life for herself. When Hephzibah attracts the unwanted advances of her employer, the country squire Sir Richard Egdon, she makes the first of two desperate decisions that will change not only her own life but the lives of those around her.
Clare Flynn writes historical fiction with compelling characters.and a strong sense of time and place. Her books often deal with characters who are displaced - forced out of their comfortable lives and familiar surroundings. She is a graduate of Manchester University where she read English Language and Literature.
After a career in international marketing, working on brands from nappies to tinned tuna and living in Paris, Milan, Brussels and Sydney, she ran her own consulting business for 15 years and now lives in Eastbourne where she writes full-time – and can look out of her window and see the sea.
When not writing and reading, Clare loves to paint with watercolours and grabs any available opportunity to travel - sometimes under the guise of research.
If it hadn't been for the death of Queen Victoria in January 1901 the village of Nettlestock would never have got its library.
The motivation for many Victorian benefactors was often the chance of a bit of self aggrandizement rather than doing good.
The Green Ribbons
When Hephzibah had first raised the matter of the village library at dinner one evening, Thomas had been scathing about the idea, declaring it a complete waste of time and money. Hephzibah wondered if that was the only reason the squire had chosen to support it. So far, Sir Richard had been assiduous in his efforts to raise the necessary funds for the building of the permanent library, convincing most of the neighbouring landowners to donate to the cause. The building was also to incorporate a social hall for the village. The linking of the building to the memory of Queen Victoria, and the opportunity for benefactors’ names to be included on the dedication stone, had helped the money roll in fast. Work had already begun to clear the land, a small plot adjacent to the old silk mill, and an architect from Newbury had drawn up the plans.