The publishers are kindly offering 2 copies of this novel to UK readers.....
An excerpt from The Gilded Lily by Deborah Swift
Sadie saw straight away that it was good news. When Ella came
in, her face was r osy and dimpled with smiles and she hugged
Sadie hard, almost squeezing the breath out of her, something she
had not done once since they came to London.
‘What do you think?’ Ella said. ‘I’m to be in a parlour tempting
ladies to buy belladonna and ceruse, and lavender oil, and
‘A perfume seller?’
‘No, not just any old perfume seller. I’m to be dressed up
like a lady – Mr Whitgift himself picked out a fine gown for me,
yards and yards of red silk, enough for . . . oh, six petticoats –’
she danced Sadie round the table – ‘and he said I’m as pretty as a
poppy in a fi eld. He wants me to dress my hair fancy, and—’
‘Stop, I’m getting dizzy.’ Sadie broke away from Ella’s embrace.
‘How much are you getting?’
‘Nineteen shilling a month.’
Sadie gasped. It was far more than she got at the wig shop.
‘I’m to start day after tomorrow. Won’t get my fi rst pay till
the end of the month though.’
‘Oh, Ell, what luck! We’ll have to scrape till payday though,
we’ve barely enough to feed ourselves. But there’s still my portion
from the wig shop coming in, that’ll cover the rent.’
‘We’ll take on a better place as soon as I’ve got my feet under
the table. I’ll make myself necessary. There’s an old Mr Whitgift
too, the father. They don’t get on. He’s a crabbit old skinfl int by
all accounts. But I’m after twisting the old gent around my fi nger.
I’m good with old men.’
Sadie felt a qualm of misgiving. ‘You’ve hardly set foot in the
place yet, don’t start getting grand ideas. And don’t go against
Josiah Whitgift or you could end up back in the gunpowder
‘Oh, clap a stopper in it. I know what I’m doing. You always
put a dampener on everything. Can’t you just be pleased for me?’
‘Course I’m pleased, I just worry in case it doesn’t work out.
We still have to buy barley for bread, and we’re all but out of
tallow for rushlights. I don’t want you taking risks before you
see a penny for your work. And I don’t trust that Josiah Whitgift.
Corey and Betsy told me there’s shady things go on round his
Deborah can be found at http://www.deborahswift.co.uk/
and on twitter at @swiftstory
Please complete the form to be entered into the UK giveaway
Please see giveaway policy
a Rafflecopter giveaway