Monday, March 31, 2014

A Mad, Wicked Folly by Sharon Biggs Walker
 March is a great month for books featuring strong women main characters, Katie's got a brand new one you won't want to miss.

A  Mad Wicked Folly by Sharon Biggs Waller

It’s still Women’s History Month, right? I hope so. Because I have the PERFECT book recommendation for anyone interested in history and women’s rights... in addition to art and England and romance. Still with me?


A Mad, Wicked Folly by Sharon Biggs Waller is the story of 17-year-old Victoria Darling. Born to wealth at the turn of the 20th Century, Vicky is decidedly privileged. But she’s less interested in wealth than she is in pursuing her art. And it is through her art that she finds herself posing nude for a class in Paris, mired in scandal, and forced to return to London.

To cover up the scandal, a marriage is arranged and ground rules are established if Vicky is going to continue to have the support--financial and otherwise--of her family. But if Vicky is going to be accepted to the Royal Academy of Art, she can’t allow herself to be locked away while wedding plans are made. As she clandestinely works on her art school application, Vicky becomes ensnared in the women’s suffrage movement and new friendships with a colorful cast of characters, including a police constable, who might be her greatest inspiration or her greatest love… and definitely not the person her parents have arranged for her to marry.

This story weaves historical figures and heroic acts with Vicky’s personal struggles to be respected as a female artist and find a place outside of the life her family has planned for her. These are the years that lead up to the period we see in Downtown Abbey and it is a time of transition between tradition and modernity and marks the beginning of what would for women be a fight that would go on for decades. It’s a thrilling setting for a tale of family, love, art, and freedom. Not to mention a wonderful celebration of history.

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