By the award-winning and Sunday Times bestselling author of THE FIVE
Tthe adventures of an 18th-Century English courtesan and spy - Volume one of a trilogy that moves from London to Paris and finally Rome
It is a fact not generally known that William Thackeray based the heroine Becky Sharp from Vanity Fair on the notorious aristocrat and sometime courtesan Henrietta Lightfoot, whose scandalous memoirs have recently been discovered in an attic...'
Henrietta was born the illegitimate daughter of the 4th Earl of Stavourley, and his mistress, the courtesan, Kitty Kennedy. When Henrietta's lover, Baron Allenham mysteriously vanishes, Henrietta embarks on a quest to find her one true love. Her epic journey takes her through a Europe in turmoil, from the elite town houses and theatres of London, to the hedonistic Palais Royale in Paris, just as the city implodes into revolution.
Henrietta is on the road to maturity and power as she evolves from innocent, frightened victim into cunning mistress of the world...
“Rollicking good read...A remarkable picture of a fascinating age which combined extraordinary bawdiness with silky sophistication (think Hogarth and Gainsborough)”
“A full-blooded historical romp - two parts Lizzie Bennett and Tom Jones's Sophia Western to one part Moll Flanders - with a splash of Fanny Hill”
“A vibrant coming of age story...ricochets with bawdy energy, witty observation and rollicking pace between brothels, theatres and the corridors of political power. Lots of fun”
“The first instalment in Hallie Rubenhold’s sparking 18th-century fictional memoir series, This enticing novel, written with charm and originality, is full of period detail and historical insight”
The Good Book Guide