- The Dressmaker - Little, Brown Book Group
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    • ISBN:9780751549232
    • Publication date:28 Feb 2013

The Dressmaker

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Atmospheric, authentic and utterly absorbing - this spirited historical novel will have timeless appeal to lovers of The Postmistress, My Last Duchess and The Kashmir Shawl

Torn between her dreams and the truth, she was faced with an impossible choice . . .

Tess, an aspiring seamstress, is stunned at her luck when the famous designer Lady Lucile Duff Gordon hires her to be a personal maid on the Titanic's doomed voyage. When disaster strikes, Tess is one of the last people allowed on a lifeboat - her employer also survives. On dry land, savage rumours begin to circulate: did Lady Duff Gordon save herself at the expense of others?

Tess's dream of becoming a skilled dressmaker is within her grasp but now she is faced with a terrible choice. Suddenly she finds herself torn between loyalty to the fiery woman who could help her realise her ambitions and the devastating truth that her mentor may not be all she seems.

Authentic and honest, The Dressmaker is a compelling and vivid story that will have you holding your breath until the last page.

*Shortlisted for the Goodreads Historical Novel Award*

Biographical Notes

Kate Alcott is a journalist who has covered politics in Washington DC, where she currently lives.

  • Other details

  • ISBN: 9781405514712
  • Publication date: 28 Feb 2013
  • Page count: 320
A novel about human relationships, trust, loyalty and ambition . . . Pacy, well-written, full of drama, atmosphere and dilemma and is sure to fascinate — Hello!
This glitzy, glamorous tale packs a punch — Star magazine
Seamlessly stitching fact and fiction together, Alcott creates a hypnotic tale — USA Today
Based on true events surrounding the dramatic incident of 1912, this honest and engaging accounts of one woman's battle with love, loyalty, truth and what it means to be brave will have readers facing up to the reality of such an atrocity — U Magazine
How My Dreams Came True

Inspiration for The Dressmaker

Read about Kate Alcott's inspiration for her novel, The Dressmaker

Sphere

Sworn To Secrecy

Mary Larkin

1971. With the troubles in Belfast at their height, a happy domestic life is something that Tess Maguire yearns for. Yet the political and social unrest are sending ripples of uncertainty through every aspect of her life. Whilst her partnership with her friend Theresa Cunningham in a dressmaking firm is successful, it's beginning to affect her romantic interests. Theresa's boyfriend Bob always seems to be near Tess. Near enough, one night, to declare his true feelings for her... Tess, in confusion, has to confront her own mixed up emotions concerning Bob. And to address her feelings for her own ever-faithful boyfriend Tony. Especially when he asks her to marry him ... Tess's widowed mother Alice marries Dan, her long-standing partner who can now spend the rest of his years with Alice and his beloved grandson Jackie. Jackie is almost an orphan: his father Jack died in a motorcycle accident. His mother Colette may as well be dead - she decamped to Canada shortly after his birth. But then Colette suddenly shows up to reclaim her son and her arrival in Belfast opens old wounds, triggers a bitter custody battle - and unearths secrets that will change everyone's lives for ever.

Virago

The Pink Suit

Nicole Mary Kelby
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The Lifeboat

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Laura's Handmade Life

Amanda Addison

Laura Lovegrove is leaving behind her seamless life in London. Architect husband Adi has been relocated to rural Norfolk, a far cry from ultra-urban Ealing.Though Laura knew village life would be different, she didn't foresee a pokey cottage, nosey neighbours, errant poodles, and even an ex turning up. Chris had been her big love at art college and seeing him again is utterly confusing. Is she really so different from the impulsive student who once trawled charity shops for vintage treasures? When a fire all but destroys Laura's collection of vintage clothes, she's heartbroken. And seriously lacking in outfits. But, salvaging what she can, Laura makes do and mends - sewing purses, bags, even dog leads (which should solve the poodle problem). Soon, she's inundated with orders. But Adi is becoming more and more distant; it's like there's something he's not telling her. Can Laura make a stitch in time and pull her family back together again?

Piatkus

Maid of Oaklands Manor

Terri Nixon

It's 1912. And a chance meeting between scullery maid Lizzy Parker and heiress Evie Creswell leads to more than an enduring friendship and a new job for Lizzy . . .It draws her into a world of privilege and intrigue and delivers her into the loving arms of a killer. Meeting the handsome but mysterious Jack Carlisle, Lizzie begins to fall for him despite rumours he had been involved in the death of Evie's father. And as she becomes further embroiled in the dangerous life that Carlisle lives, she must decide if he can be trusted with the life of a close friend, and, ultimately, if he is worth the risk to her own . . . Discover Piatkus Entice: temptation at your fingertips - www.piatkusentice.co.uk

Piatkus

The Duchess Hunt

Jennifer Haymore

Simon Hawkins, Duke of Trent, is no stranger to scandal. Rumours and innuendo have darkened the House of Trent for decades, and it has fallen to Simon to restore his tattered family name. He lives by a strict code of honour, but when he is called home to investigate his mother's disappearance, the distinguished duke will tangle with temptation. For there waits the only woman he has ever loved - and the last woman he should desire . . . Sarah Osborne has spent her life dreaming of Simon's touch. But dukes do not long for lady's maids - or so Sarah believes, until a stolen kiss sparks a passion that could be her ultimate undoing. As the couple begin a forbidden romance, a cunning enemy plots to destroy the duke and everything he loves. Now, caught in a blackmailer's web, Simon faces an agonizing choice: sacrifice his family's future or break Sarah's heart.

Abacus

Every Man For Himself

For the four fraught, mysterious days of her doomed maiden voyage in 1912, the Titanic sails towards New York, glittering with luxury, freighted with millionaires and hopefuls. In her labyrinthine passageways are played out the last, secret hours of a small group of passengers, their fate sealed in prose of startling, sublime beauty, as Beryl Bainbridge's haunting masterpiece moves inexorably to its known and terrible end.

Orbit

The Castings Trilogy

Pamela Freeman

Bramble is impetuous with a talent for trouble, and she finds it when an accident brands her a criminal. But she expects no mercy with her Traveller blood - so when the village gods tell her to flee, she hits the road. In ghost-ridden Turvite, Ash leaves the road for an apprenticeship, the only one available for a Traveller such as himself. Then his employer trains him to kill on demand and his future looks bleak. But the gods have deeper plans for both Ash and Bramble. Their shared heritage grants them hidden strengths, which are needed to combat a new evil. Saker also remembers Travellers once owned this land. But he intends to take it back in vengeance, using enchantment and the blood of innocents.This omnibus edition contains: BLOOD TIES, DEEP WATER and FULL CIRCLE.

The summer must-read from Kate Furnivall

EXTRACT: SHADOWS ON THE NILE

Beautifully written, compulsively plotted and truly satisfying – Shadows on the Nile is a summer must-have for fans of Julia Gregson, Rosie Thomas and other sumptuous historical romances Indulge yourself with this sneak-peek at the first chapter now.

Abacus

Samarkand

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Abacus

Palimpsest: A Memoir

Gore Vidal
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The Painted Girls

Cathy Marie Buchanan
Piatkus

The Twins

Saskia Sarginson
Import Aus

So Close

Patrick Mangan

Sport is all about winning, isn't it? Well, yes and no. For every winner, there's always a loser - often a whole string of them. And while the achievements of the ecstatic victor are heralded by delirious fans, and his, her or their story is emblazoned across triumphant headlines for days, if not decades, the story of the loser is often...lost. This book, by former Age sportswriter Patrick Mangan, is a tribute to the defeated. Some whose performances have been all but forgotten; others whose exploits are unforgettable. In short, it's the tale of some of the bravest, unluckiest, most ridiculous defeats in sporting history.How did Aussie ace Pat Rafter lose the 2001 Wimbledon final to the enigmatic Goran Ivanisevic before the most raucous crowd in the tournament's history? Why did Collingwood lose to Carlton in the 1970 grand final after being 44 points to the good at half?time? Typically, there's only one way to win - by being the best. But there are countless ways of having victory snatched from your grasp. Brilliance isn't always enough - witness Gary Ablett's sensational nine-goal haul in 1989 that almost clinched arguably the most extraordinary AFL grand final of all. Courage mightn't get you over the line either - think of Allan Border and Jeff Thomson's titanic last-wicket partnership against England in 1982 that nearly won one of the closest-fought Tests ever. And sometimes wretched bad luck is enough to stop you in your tracks - look no further than Australian walker Jane Saville, only a few hundred metres from a gold medal at Sydney 2000 in the 20-kilometre walk when she was - to the horror of Aussie onlookers - tragically disqualified. From the calamitous to the hilarious, from the poignant to the absurd, sport is about so much more than gold medals, premiership trophies and urns filled with ashes. And in this book, some of those sportspeople, whose stories are as courageous and compelling as they are will finally get the glory they deserve.

Forever

When She Was Wicked

Anne Barton

SOME RULES SIMPLY BEG TO BE BROKENA dressmaker in London's busiest shop, Miss Anabelle Honeycote overhears the ton's steamiest secrets - and (occasionally) uses them to her advantage. It isn't something she's proud of, but the reluctant blackmailer needs the money to care for her gravely ill mother. To make up for her misdeeds, Anabelle keeps to a firm set of rules:Never request payment from someone who cannot afford it.Never reveal the secrets of a paying client.Never enter into any form of social interaction with a client.Her list keeps her (somewhat) honest - until she encounters Owen Sherbourne, the Duke of Huntford.Not only does Owen nip Anabelle's extortion plans in the bud, the devilishly handsome duke soon has the sexy seamstress dreaming of more than silk and satin. With Owen, Anabelle enjoys pleasures she never imagined . . . until a scandal from the past resurfaces. Now her rules could mean his family's ruin. Owen's searing kisses carry the promise of passion, but how will he react when Anabelle's most devastating secret is finally revealed?

Sphere

The English Girl

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Virago

Kingfishers Catch Fire

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Abacus

The Awakening of Miss Prim

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Prudencia Prim is a young woman of intelligence and achievement, with a deep knowledge of literature and several letters after her name. But when she accepts the post of private librarian in the village of San Ireneo de Arnois, she is unprepared for what she encounters there. Her employer, a book-loving intellectual, is dashing yet contrarian, always ready with a critique of her cherished Jane Austen and Louisa May Alcott. The neighbours, too, are capable of charm and eccentricity in equal measure, determined as they are to preserve their singular little community from the modern world outside. Prudencia hoped for friendship in San Ireneo but she didn't suspect that she might find love - nor that the course of her new life would run quite so rocky, would offer challenge and heartache as well as joy, discovery and fireside debate. The Awakening of Miss Prim is a distinctive and delightfully entertaining tale of literature, philosophy and the search for happiness.

Virago

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For Emily Pool, India is a magical place where she has the freedom to escape her mother's suffocating influence. Her days are spent exploring the canals and gardens of East Bengal, and admiringly observing her glamorous, dignified neighbours, the Nikolides. But just as the cracks in Emily's family home are papered over, so do the Pools strive to maintain an outward impression of respectability, and it is through the Nikolides that Emily is exposed to a world of adult deceit and attrition. And when her beloved dog dies, the event forces a confrontation and reveals to Emily that nothing in the town is quite as it seems . . .