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The Mermaid and Mrs Hancock

by Imogen Hermes Gowar

Sensuous and lush .... Enjoy an immersion into the sights, sounds, smells and tastes of XVIII century England. But you'll also discover how women can only be wife or whore and men must choose between ambition and safety.

Extract

She was borne home from the Pantheon not five hours earlier, her feet bruised from dancing and her voice hoarse from laughing, and now lolling in her Turkish wrap turns her peevish attention to the Tete-a-Tete page of Town and Country Magazine. On the table a china pot of chocolate keeps warm over its flame, and the dresser is loaded with vases of peonies and tulips: these heavy fragrances, the one earthy, the other airy, more or less conceal the sour hint of piss that emanates from a gilt cage of snow-white mice. They sleep all in a tussle, their raspberry-pips eyes closed, twitching and squeaking in their mouse-dreams. It is a day of great sunshine again. The shadows of pigeons flicker across the walls, and the open window lets in the hiss of the breeze through the trees in Soho Square.

Parallels

Carnevale by Michelle Lovric
The Miniaturist by Jessie Burton
Elijah's Mermaid by Essie Fox
 

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