Nuala O'Connor - Becoming Belle - Little, Brown Book Group

Time remaining

  • -- days
  • -- hours
  • -- minutes
  • -- seconds
Other Formats
  • Paperback
    More information
    • ISBN:9780349421261
    • Publication date:06 Jun 2019
  • Downloadable audio file £P.O.R.
    More information
    • ISBN:9781405543088
    • Publication date:06 Jun 2019

Becoming Belle

By Nuala O'Connor

  • Paperback
  • £13.99

A new Historical fiction book by acclaimed Irish author Nuala O'Connor

'Luminous' Sebastian Barry

'Incandescent characters and mellifluous prose' Lisa Carey

A woman ahead of her time . . .

In 1887, Isabel Bilton is the eldest of three daughters of a middle-class military family, growing up in a small garrison town. By 1891 she is the Countess of Clancarty, dubbed "the peasant countess" by the press, and a member of the Irish aristocracy. Becoming Belle is the story of the four years in between, of Belle's rapid ascent and the people that tried to tear her down.

Reimagined by a novelist at the height of her powers, Belle is an unforgettable woman. Set against an absorbing portrait of Victorian London, hers is a timeless rags-to-riches story a la Becky Sharpe.

'Belle's determination to live her life on her own terms and in defiance of her times makes her a fascinating subject for the author and the reader . . . a touchstone from the past to inspire in the present.' Irish Central

'Nuala O'Connor has the thrilling ability to step back nimbly and enter the deep dance of time. This is a hidden history laid luminously before us of an exultant Anglo-Irish woman navigating the dark shoals and the bright fields of a life.' Sebastian Barry, award-winning author of The Secret Scripture and Days Without End

'Masterful storytelling! I was putty in Nuala O'Connor's hands. She made the unsinkable Belle Bilton and her down-to-earth sister Flo real to me, and brought 1880's London to my living room. Encore! Encore!' Lynn Cullen, bestselling author of Mrs. Poe

'A glorious novel in which Belle Bilton and 19th century London are brought roaring to life with exquisite period detail.' Hazel Gaynor, New York Times bestselling author of A Memory of Violets

'Thoroughly engrossing and entertaining read. O'Connor's meticulous attention to period detail and scrutiny of the upper classes and their shallow lives [is] reminiscent of Edith Wharton at her very best. It also makes us question whether women have ever really escaped from the censorious judgement of Victorian times.' Liz Nugent, author of Unraveling Oliver

'Thrillingly dramatic and achingly moving and profoundly resonant into this present era.' Robert Olen Butler, author of A Good Scent from a Strange Mountain

'Becoming Belle is so mesmerizing you will be distraught when it ends. O'Connor has resurrected a fiery, inexorable woman who rewrites the script on a stage supposedly ruled by men. Sensual, witty, daring, and unapologetically forward.' Lisa Carey, author of The Stolen Child

'O'Connor gently unfolds Belle's tale in a manner that is compelling and disarming. The ambience may be Victorian elegance but the sheer honesty of O'Connor's writing is sensual, authentic and earthy. A delight!' Rose Servitova, author of The Longbourn Letters

Biographical Notes

Nuala O'Connor (aka Nuala Ní Chonchúir) was born in Dublin, Ireland, she lives in East Galway. Her fifth short story collection Joyride to Jupiter was published by New Island in 2017; her story 'Consolata' from that collection was shortlisted for Short Story of the Year at the 2017 Irish Book Awards.

Nuala's third novel, Miss Emily, about the poet Emily Dickinson and her Irish maid, was shortlisted for the Eason Book Club Novel of the Year 2015 and longlisted for the 2017 International DUBLIN Literary Award.

Nuala's fourth novel, Becoming Belle, will be published in August 2018.

  • Other details

  • ISBN: 9780349421254
  • Publication date: 06 Sep 2018
  • Page count: 384
  • Imprint: Piatkus
Sphere

The King's Assassin

Angus Donald
Authors:
Angus Donald
Piatkus

A Wicked Way to Win an Earl

Anna Bradley
Authors:
Anna Bradley

Perfect for fans of Julia Quinn and Eloisa James, this sparkling debut is an exciting new voice in Historical romanceEngland, 1811. Delia Somerset despises the privileged ton, but her young sister, Lily, is desperate to escape their family's scandalous past and join high society. Unwilling to upset her sister, Delia reluctantly agrees to attend a party at the Sutherland estate-and avoid the gossip at all costs.Alec Sutherland is known as a hot-headed scoundrel, but nothing gets a rise out of him as much as the news that his brother desires Delia's hand in marriage. She is, after all, the daughter of the London belle who soiled their family name. He's determined to ruin her reputation as well, in the most delicious way possible. It's only a matter of time before he can woo her with his irresistible advances.As Delia devilishly plays along in Alec's game, determined to prove the joke is on him, they inch ever closer to repeating history. And in this game of seductive glances, scandalous whispers, and old debts, the outcome might be much more than either of them anticipated...

Sphere

A Brief Affair

Margaret Leroy
Authors:
Margaret Leroy

September 1940. England is a war once again and London has become an ever-fragile place for widowed Livia Ripley and her two young daughters, Polly and Eliza. When Livia meets charismatic publisher Hugo Ballantyne, she is hopeful that her life is about to change for the better. But as clouds gather in the clear autumn sky, the wail of the siren heralds the arrival of the Luftwaffe.As the raids intensify, Livia volunteers to be a warden at the invitation of enigmatic Justin Connelly. Here she experiences the true reality and despair of war, a contrast to the world of comfort and cocktails provided in fleeting afternoons at the Balfour Hotel with Hugo. And ultimately, Livia discovers a strength she never knew she had that will give her the power to save those she loves. For when you don't know what tomorrow may bring, there is no choice but to live for today.Reminiscent of classic films like Brief Encounter and The End of the Affair, this is a stunningly captured story of a woman finding herself whilst the world is at war

Piatkus

Masquerade

Joanna Taylor
Authors:
Joanna Taylor

A street-girl and a lord? London is poised for scandal . . . Lizzy Ward never meant to end up working the streets of Piccadilly. So when a mysterious nobleman pursues her, it seems her luck is changing. But Lord Hays wants feisty Lizzy for more than a night. He needs her to masquerade as his companion, wearing the sumptuous gowns and social mask of a true lady.With the stakes so high, love is out of the question. But as Lizzy navigates the fashion and faux-pas of the London elite, she finds her tough facade failing her. As the connection between her and Lord Hays grows, it's no longer certain who is wearing the mask . . .A love story of surpassing power and imagination, this is a stunning new British voice in historical romance, perfect for fans of Eloisa James, Julia Quinn, Stephanie Laurens and Georgette Heyer'A fun and frothy, rags-to-riches Regency romance which is guaranteed to make hearts flutter and set pulses racing' Wigan Today'Combining the fabulous settings of Regency London with a plot inspired by one of my favourite films (Pretty Woman), Joanna takes us on a whirlwind romantic adventure that had me captivated' One More Page'A thrilling book with a cute love story that will have you swooning over handsome lords' Miss Bookworm Reviews'An awesome read for Regency Romance lovers . . . I completely loved this book' Maureen's Books

Sphere

Uprising

Jack Whyte
Authors:
Jack Whyte

Scotland: AD 1297Two heroes. One nation. United in the fight for freedom.In the spring of 1297, the two great Scottish heroes meet in Ayr: William Wallace, legendary champion of the common man, and Robert Bruce, who would perfect the guerrilla warfare developed by Wallace and use it to cement his place in history as Scotland's greatest king.Each is determined to defy the ambitions of England and its malignant king, Edward Plantagenet, whose lust to conquer and consume the realm of Scotland by blood and fury is unyielding. Their anger is about to unleash a storm that will last for sixteen years.From Jack Whyte, the master of the sweeping historical epic, comes the continuing story of two heroes who changed the entire destiny of Scotland by defying the might and power of the king of England.

Sphere

Searching for Grace Kelly

M. G. Callahan
Authors:
M. G. Callahan

For a small-town girl with big dreams in 1955, there is no address more desirable than New York's Barbizon Hotel - the place where Grace Kelly lived when she first came to the big city. Laura is an aristocratic beauty from Connecticut who arrives with a magazine internship and dreams of becoming a writer Dolly is a hopeless romantic working the secretarial pool and looking to be swept off her feet Vivian is a red-headed British bombshell who yearns to make it as a singer while working nights as a cigarette girl Perfect for fans of Mad Men, The Best of Everything and The Paris Wife, this is a novel filled to the brim with glamour, following the lives of three women as they are lured into the exhilarating, dazzling world of New York City and embark on a journey that will alter their lives for ever.

Sphere

Keep the Home Fires Burning

Cynthia Harrod-Eagles
Authors:
Cynthia Harrod-Eagles

The year is 1915, and the war is raging on . . . The war was not 'over by Christmas' after all and as 1915 begins, the Hunters begin to settle into wartime life.Diana, the eldest Hunter daughter, sees her fiance off to the Front but doesn't expect such coldness from her future mother-in-law. David's battalion is almost ready to be sent to the Front, but how will Beattie's fragile peace of mind endure? Below stairs, Ethel, the under housemaid, is tired of having her beaux go off to war so she deliberately sets her sights on a man who works on the railway, believing he won't be allowed to volunteer. Eric turns out to be decent, honest and he genuinely cares about Ethel - is this the man who could give her a new life?The Hunters, their servants and their neighbours soon realise that war is not just for the soldiers, but it's for everyone to win, and every new atrocity that is reported bolsters British determination: this is a war that must be won at all costs.Keep the Home Fires Burning is the second book in the War at Home series by Cynthia Harrod-Eagles, author of the much-loved Morland Dynasty novels. Set against the real events of 1915, this is an evocative, authentic and wonderfully depicted drama featuring the Hunter family and their servants.

Orbit

War of Shadows

Gail Z. Martin
Authors:
Gail Z. Martin
Orbit

Clash of Iron

Angus Watson
Authors:
Angus Watson

LEADERS ARE FORGED IN THE FIRES OF WARIron Age warriors Dug and Lowa captured Maidun castle and freed its slaves. But now they have conquered it, they must defend it.A Roman invasion is coming from Gaul, but rather than uniting to protect their home, the British tribes battle each other - and see Maidun as an easy target.Meanwhile, Lowa's spies infiltrate Gaul, discovering the Romans have recruited bloodthirsty British druids, and Maidunite Ragnall finds his loyalties torn when he meets Rome's charismatic general, Julius Caesar.War is coming. Who will pay its price?For more epic action from Angus Watson, check out:West of West TrilogyYou Die When You DieThe Land you Never LeaveWhere Gods Fear to GoThe Iron Age TrilogyAge of IronClash of IronReign of Iron

Piatkus

Soulbound

Kristen Callihan
Authors:
Kristen Callihan
Constable

Agnès Sorel: Mistress of Beauty

HRH Princess Michael of Kent
Authors:
HRH Princess Michael of Kent

From HRH Princess Michael of Kent, bestselling author of The Queen of Four Kingdoms, comes the extraordinary second volume in the Anjou trilogy.Yolande, the Queen of Four Kingdoms is dead. Agnès Sorel, beautiful, innocent, twenty years old, had arrived a year earlier with the court of Yolande's son, René D'Anjou, and remained with his mother at her request, knowing how much the King of France, her dissolute son-in-law Charles VII, would need wise guidance. As a trusted confidant of Yolande, Agnès captivates everyone she meets, and in her role as a demoiselle to René's wife, Isabelle of Lorraine, Agnès finds herself firmly ensconced in the royal court. Soon though, whispers at court regarding Charles's burgeoning feelings for her begin to grow, and despite her best efforts to resist, Agnès is alarmed to discover that she too is in love.Plagued by guilt but unable to deny her feelings for the King, Agnès is forced to choose between her love for Charles, and her duty to herself . . . Praise for The Queen of Four Kingdoms: 'Meticulously researched and powerfully evoked.' Philippa Gregory 'Takes the reader to the heart of this glamorous, dangerous world, and holds them spellbound. I loved it.' Julian Fellowes 'Riveting . . . spellbinding.' Mail on Sunday'A page-turning blend of epic battles, betrayal, seduction and heroism.' Hello

Piatkus

Evernight

Kristen Callihan
Authors:
Kristen Callihan
Piatkus

The Boleyn Bride

Emily Purdy
Authors:
Emily Purdy

Sixteen, of noble birth and stunningly beautiful, Elizabeth Howard envisions a glorious life for herself as lady-in-waiting to the future queen, Catherine of Aragon. But when she is forced to marry Thomas Boleyn, a wealthy commoner, Elizabeth is left to stagnate in the countryside while her detested husband pursues his ambitions. There, she raises golden girl Mary, moody George, and ugly duckling Anne - while staving off boredom with a string of admirers. Until Henry VIII takes the throne . . . When Thomas finally brings his highborn wife to London, Elizabeth indulges in lavish diversions and dalliances - and catches the lusty king's eye. But those who enjoy Henry's fickle favor must also guard against his wrath. For while her husband's machinations bring Elizabeth and her children to the pinnacle of power, the distance to the scaffold is but a short one - and the Boleyn family's fortune may be turning...Praise for Emily Purdy:'[Purdy] succeeds in rendering Elizabeth both unforgettable and undeniably real.' Historical Novel Society 'It has been some time since I've been so captivated by a Tudor based historical novel. I have to admit to being somewhat burned out by the over saturation of the Tudors . . . however, The Boleyn Bride has renewed my interest. I highly recommend it.' The True Book Addict'Classic story of a woman scorned, who is after revenge of the most bloody kind.' Closer Magazine'A rollercoaster tale which gives a new and fascinating perspective on three young women who became hostages to fortune in a perilous and turbulent age.' Lancashire Evening Post'Nicely written, and full of lust, greed and intrigue, this is a book sure to earn Emily Purdy many new fans.'Bookwormink.co.uk

Piatkus

Winterblaze

Kristen Callihan
Authors:
Kristen Callihan

Once blissfully in love . . . Poppy Lane is keeping secrets. Her powerful gift has earned her membership in the Society for the Suppression of Supernaturals, but she must keep both her ability and her alliance with the Society from her husband, Winston. Yet when Winston is brutally attacked by a werewolf, Poppy's secrets are revealed, leaving Winston's trust in her as broken as his body. Now Poppy will do anything to win back his affections . . . Their relationship is now put to the ultimate test.Winston Lane soon regains his physical strength but his face and heart still bear the scars of the vicious attack. Drawn into the darkest depths of London, Winston must fight an evil demon that wants to take away the last hope of reconciliation with his wife. As a former police inspector, Winston has intelligence and logic on his side. But it will take the strength of Poppy's love for him to defeat the forces that threaten to tear them apart.

Orbit

Age of Iron

Angus Watson
Authors:
Angus Watson
Sphere

We Shall Remember

Emma Fraser
Authors:
Emma Fraser

Set against the Second World War, this is a powerful and well-written wartime drama that asks the question, what would you do under fire? Perfect for fans of Annie Groves and Lily Baxter.'A touching, thought-provoking saga' Lancashire Guardian1939. Irena is a young medical student living in Warsaw when the German army invade Poland. Those closest to her are dying and when Irena realises that no one is coming to Poland's aid, it's clear that she is alone. Forced to flee to Britain, Irena meets Richard, a RAF pilot who she's instantly drawn to and there's a glimmer of happiness on the horizon. And then the war becomes more brutal and in order to right a never-forgotten wrong Irena must make an impossible decision.1989. Decades later, Sarah's mother is left a home in Skye and another in Edinburgh following the death of Lord Glendale, a man she's never met, and only on the condition that Magdalena Drobnik, a woman she's never heard of, is no longer alive. Sarah's only clues to this mystery are two photographs she doesn't understand but she's determined to discover the truth, not knowing that she's about to begin a journey that will change her life.Gripping, poignant and honest, We Shall Remember is an incredibly powerful story about the choices we make under fire. It will stay with you long after you've turned the final page.

Piatkus

Firelight

Kristen Callihan
Authors:
Kristen Callihan
Piatkus

Moonglow

Kristen Callihan
Authors:
Kristen Callihan

Once the seeds of desire are sown . . . Finally free of her suffocating marriage, widow Daisy Ellis Craigmore is ready to embrace the pleasures of life that have long been denied her. Yet her newfound freedom is short lived. A string of unexplained murders has brought danger to Daisy's door, forcing her to turn to the most unlikely of saviors . . . Their growing passion knows no bounds . . . Ian Ranulf, the Marquis of Northrup, has spent lifetimes hiding his primal nature from London society. But now a vicious killer threatens to expose his secrets. Ian must step out of the shadows and protect the beautiful, fearless Daisy, who awakens in him desires he thought long dead. As their quest to unmask the villain draws them closer together, Daisy has no choice but to reveal her own startling secret, and Ian must face the undeniable truth: Losing his heart to Daisy may be the only way to save his soul.For fans of Cassandra Clare, Gail Carriger and Amanda Quick - this is a dark, paranormal romance you won't want to miss. 'Evocative and deeply romantic' - Nalini Singh'A sizzling paranormal with dark history and explosive magic! Calligan is an impressive new talent' - Larissa Ione

Piatkus

Shadowdance

Kristen Callihan
Authors:
Kristen Callihan
Piatkus

Lord Perfect

Loretta Chase
Authors:
Loretta Chase

Tall, dark, and handsome, the heir to the Earl of Hargate, Benedict Carsington, is known for his impeccable manners and good breeding. Benedict knows all the rules and has no trouble following them - until Bathsheba Wingate enters his life. Bathsheba Wingate belongs to the rotten branch of the DeLucey family: a notorious bunch of liars, frauds and swindlers. Small wonder her husband's high-born family disowned him. Now widowed, Bathsheba is determined to give her young daughter a proper upbringing. Nothing and no one will disrupt her plans. Then Bathseba's hoyden daughter lures Benedict's precocious nephew into a quest for a legendary treasure. To recover the would-be knights errant, Benedict and Bathsheba must embark on a rescue mission that puts them in dangerous, intimate proximity. Fortunately, Benedict is in perfect control - despite his mad desire to break all the rules. Perfect control. Really.