Barbara Ewing - The Mesmerist - Little, Brown Book Group

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The Mesmerist

Number 1 in series

By Barbara Ewing

  • Paperback
  • £8.99

A captivating, rich historical novel set in nineteenth-century Bloomsbury.

London, 1838: the controversial practice of Mesmerism, with its genuine practitioners and its fraudulent chancers, has hypnotised the city. Miss Cordelia Preston, a beautiful, ageing, out-of-work actress terrified of returning to the poverty of her childhood, suddenly emerges as a Lady Phreno-Mesmerist. In her candle-lit Bloomsbury basement she learns to harness her talent - and to finally look towards the future.

But success is fragile when you have a past filled with secrets. On a wintry, moonlit night a body is found in Bloomsbury Square, and what began as an audacious subterfuge erupts into a scandal. Cordelia's past is revealed, bringing not only heartache but terror - and the mystery of a cloaked figure who waits for her in the shadowy London streets.

Biographical Notes

Barbara Ewing is a New Zealand-born actress and author who lives in London. She has a university degree in English and Maori and won the Bancroft Gold Medal at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art. www.barbaraewing.com

  • Other details

  • ISBN: 9780751537604
  • Publication date: 15 May 2008
  • Page count: 400
  • Imprint: Sphere
Mesmerically gripping — Sainsbury’s MAGAZINE
The enormous spirit of the characters and overriding sense of fun gives this book warmth and appeal — Waterstone’s Books Quarterly
Written with insight, intelligence and style, a highly engaging and entertaining read with a complex plot and a cast of utterly believable characters — SYDNEY Morning HERALD
A good-humoured saga — SUN HERALD
Sphere

The Circus Of Ghosts

Barbara Ewing
Authors:
Barbara Ewing

New York, late 1840s, and in the wild, noisy, brash and beautiful circus of Silas P. Swift a shadowy, mesmeric woman entrances crowds because she can unlock the secrets of troubled minds. Above them all her daughter sweeps and soars: acrobat and tightrope-walker. People cannot take their eyes from the mysterious woman in the Big Top who can help so many others - but she cannot unlock dark, literally unspeakable, memories of her own. In London memories fester in the mind of an old and venomous duke of the realm. He plots, with an unscrupulous lawyer (and a huge financial reward) against the mother and the daughter: to kill one, and to abduct the other and bring her across the Atlantic to him: She is mine. The actress and mesmerist Cordelia Preston and her daughter Gwenlliam live with their unusual family in the exciting new city among exciting new ideas: the telegraph, the daguerrotype, anaesthesia, table-tapping. And among the dangerous street-gangs of New York also, whose raw violence meets Cordelia and Gwenlliam and those that they love, with unexpected results.

Sphere

The Fraud

Barbara Ewing
Authors:
Barbara Ewing

1765. Filipo di Vecellio of Florence, portrait painter, is the toast of London: rich, successful, and married to Angelica, known as the most beautiful woman in the city. Their Pall Mall home is the hub of the art world; their impressive social gatherings run so smoothly by Filipo's silent sister, Francesca. But beneath the surface, the house conceals a swarm of dangerous secrets.Where does Francesca di Vecellio go as the sun sets over Covent Garden? And why are there always candles lit in her attic, while no candles burn for her brother's exquisite wife? Within the bustling artistic lives of the di Vecellios hides corruption and lies; love and tragedy. And wild ambition unbalances the capital's art world as, finally, a wonderful portrait battles for the right to paint the truth . . .

Sphere

The Trespass

Barbara Ewing
Authors:
Barbara Ewing
Virago

A Dangerous Vine

Barbara Ewing
Authors:
Barbara Ewing

Margaret Rose Bennett, like her elder sister, Elizabeth, was named after the two English princesses. But Elizabeth is dead, and Margaret Rose still living, searching and reaching out for life and its meaning. And against the frankly odd, strained and curiously English household she inhabits in a New Zealand city, it is hard to make out the truth. So Margaret abandons what her parents think is right: learning English history, the French language, listening to comedy shows on the World Service and returning home on the 9.30 tram and maps out a course of her own. She studies Maori at University, makes friends with the wayward Emily (daughter of the soon to be Prime Minister of New Zealand) and shy, independent Prudence. As a trio they study hard for their degrees, work by day at the local Government offices and by night sing, drink and laugh with the local Maori people - and fall in love. A new world, an enchanting world, and one with an underbelly of struggle, colour, passion and even violence. Far removed from the closed, ordered life of Margaret Rose's family, but perhaps not so detached from their own, secret history...Here is an extraordinary, poetic novel of a society trapped in a time of its own, undercut by a people that live and breathe with a vigour that bubbles and burst through the silent surface.

Ace Atkins

Ace Atkins is a former Pulitzer Prize-nominated journalist who cut his teeth as a crime reporter in the newsroom of the Tampa Tribune. He published his first novel at the age of 27 and became a full-time novelist at 30. Ace lives on a historic farm outside Oxford, Mississippi with his family.

Ali McNamara

Ali McNamara attributes her over-active and very vivid imagination to one thing - being an only child. Time spent dreaming up adventures when she was young has left her with a head bursting with stories waiting to be told.When stories she wrote for fun on Ronan Keating's website became so popular they were sold as a fundraising project for his cancer awareness charity, Ali realised that not only was writing something she enjoyed doing, but something others enjoyed reading too. Ali lives in Cambridgeshire with her family and two Labradors. When she isn't writing, she likes to travel, read, and people-watch, more often than not accompanied by a good cup of coffee. Her dogs and a love of exercise keep her sane!To find out more about Ali visit her website: www.alimcnamara.co.uk or follow her on Twitter: @AliMcNamara

Barbara Cardy

BARBARA CARDY originally trained in art, design and construction, before moving through a variety of careers. To date, she has edited twenty-seven anthologies of various kinds. She lives in Kent with her two boys.

Cath Staincliffe

Cath Staincliffe is an award winning novelist, radio playwright and creator of ITV's hit series Blue Murder. Cath's books have been shortlisted for the CWA Best First Novel award. She was joint winner of the CWA Short Story Dagger in 2012. Letters To My Daughter's Killer was selected for the Specsavers Crime Thriller Book Club on ITV3 in 2014. Cath also writes the Scott & Bailey books based on the popular ITV series. She lives with her family in Manchester.

Catherynne M. Valente

Catherynne M. Valente is the New York Times bestselling author of over two dozen works of fiction and poetry, including Palimpsest, the Orphan's Tales series, Deathless and the crowdfunded phenomenon The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making. She is the winner of the Andre Norton, Tiptree, Mythopoeic, Rhysling, Lambda, Locus and Hugo awards. She has been a finalist for the Nebula and World Fantasy Awards. She lives on an island off the coast of Maine with a small but growing menagerie of beasts, some of which are human.

Celia Brayfield

Celia Brayfield is a bestselling novelist and a journalist. Her most recent novels, GETTING HOME, SUNSET and HEARTSWAP were published to great critical acclaim by Little Brown. She has one daughter and lives and works in London.

Charlotte Rogan

Charlotte Rogan studied architecture at Princeton University and worked for a large construction firm before turning to fiction. She is the author of The Lifeboat, which was nominated for the Guardian first book award and the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award and which has been translated into twenty-six languages. After many years in Dallas and a year in Johannesburg, she now lives in Westport, Connecticut.

Chevy Stevens

Chevy Stevens grew up on a ranch on Vancouver Island and still lives on the island with her husband and daughter. When she's not working on her next book, she's camping and canoeing with her family in the local mountains. Her debut novel, Still Missing, won the International Thriller Writers Award for Best First Novel.

Christobel Kent

Christobel Kent was born in London and educated at Cambridge. She has lived variously in Essex, London and Italy. Her childhood included several years spent on a Thames sailing barge in Maldon, Essex with her father, stepmother, three siblings and four step-siblings. She now lives in both Cambridge and Florence with her husband and five children.

Cynthia Harrod-Eagles

Cynthia Harrod-Eagles is the author of the hugely popular Morland Dynasty novels, which have captivated and enthralled readers for decades. She is also the author of the contemporary Bill Slider Mystery series, as well as her new series, War at Home, which is an epic family drama set against the backdrop of World War I. Cynthia's passions are music, wine, horses, architecture and the English countryside.

Dan Simmons

Dan Simmons was born in Peoria, Illinois, in 1948, and grew up in various cities and small towns in the Midwest. He received his Masters in Education from Washington University in St. Louis in 1971. He worked in elementary education for eighteen years, winning awards for his innovative teaching, and became a full-time writer in 1987. Dan lives in Colorado with his wife, Karen, and has a daughter in her twenties. His books are published in twenty-nine counties and many of them have been optioned for film.

Daphne Du Maurier

Daphne du Maurier (1907-89) was born in London, the daughter of the famous actor-manager Sir Gerald du Maurier and granddaughter of George du Maurier, the author and artist. In 1931 her first novel, The Loving Spirit, was published. A biography of her father and three other novels followed, but it was the novel Rebecca that launched her into the literary stratosphere and made her one of the most popular authors of her day. In 1932, du Maurier married Major Frederick Browning, with whom she had three children.Many of du Maurier's bestselling novels and short stories were adapted into award-winning films, including Alfred Hitchcock's The Birds and Nicolas Roeg's Don't Look Now. In 1969 du Maurier was awarded a DBE. She lived most of her life in Cornwall, the setting for many of her books.

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E. L. Doctorow's novels include Andrew's Brain, Homer and Langley, The March, City of God, Welcome to Hard Times, The Book of Daniel, Ragtime, Loon Lake, Lives of the Poets, World's Fair, Billy Bathgate and The Waterworks. Among his honours are the National Book Award, two National Book Critics Circle awards, the PEN/Faulkner Award, the Edith Wharton Citation for Fiction, the William Dean Howells Medal of the American Academy of Arts and Letters and the presidentially conferred National Humanities Medal. He died in July 2015.

Elizabeth Moon

Elizabeth Moon served in the US Marine Corps, reaching the rank of 1st Lieutenant during active duty. She has also earned degrees in history and biology, run for public office and been a columnist on her local newspaper. She lives near Austin, Texas, with her husband and their son. Twenty-six of her books are in print, and she won the Nebula Award with her science fiction novel Speed of Dark (also shortlisted for the Clarke Award), and was a finalist for the Hugo in 1997.

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Emma Blair was a pen name for Scottish actor and author Iain Blair, who began writing in his spare time and whose first novel, Where No Man Cries, was published in 1982. During a writing career spanning three decades he produced some thirty novels, but his true identity remained a secret until 1998 when his novel Flower of Scotland was nominated for the RNA Romantic Novel of the Year award. He was one of Britain's most popular authors and his books among the most borrowed from libraries. Iain Blair died in July 2011.

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