The Journal of Dora Damage

by Belinda Starling

Rude awakening for wife of Victorian bookbinder crippled by arthritis, who turns to binding the specialist pornography of reactionary scientists to keep family and home together. Plenty of authentic London grime and squalor for anyone into period detail, not to mention the esoteric tastes of the aristocracy, but be prepared to be uplifted by a thoroughly modern heroine.


'No, no, no, Mistress Pretty. I believe we have a misunderstanding. It is this way, comfier than the street and ... ' here he dropped his voice, ' ... and cosier too.' His yellow eyes stared into mine, and he pulled his face so close that I could see the wax shining on the tips of his moustache. Beneath it, his dry mouth broke into a vile smile.
'So, what's it to be, you mischievous sow?' As he spoke, the clouds of air used by his words hung between us, as if I were to read from them the choice he was spelling out to me. 'So, what's it to be, then? Workhouse or whorehouse?'


Tipping the Velvet by Sarah Waters

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