You may recall my review of The Captain’s Girl back in November last year. Well I’ve just finished the third novel in the Cornish saga from Nicola Pryce, called The Cornish Dressmaker and it’s just a good. I don’t know about you but I’m riveted to the sofa on Sunday evening’s now Poldark is back on our screen, and if you like that, you’ll love this new book too.
Published last month through Corvus Books, The Cornish Dressmaker introduces us to Elowyn Liddicot, a young seamstress working in Foss, Cornwall, in 1796. In a time where women very much have their future mapped out by others, Elly very much wants to make her own way in the world. Unfortunately it seems that her family have their own ideas for her future and she is being pushed into the arms of Nathan Cardew, the Superintendent of Works in nearby Porthcarrow.
But one evening, Elly spots something in a bay as she looks out to sea. It’s a body. With Billy Bosco, the errand boy who lives with her at Coombe House, she makes her way down the cliff face and the two of them rescue a man, but as the light fades there is no way they can climb back up the cliff face with the dead weight of the man. They seek refuge in a cave, which they realise is being used by smugglers. Keeping the man warm with their own bodies, they manage to bring him back from the dead. So begins a new chapter for The Cornish Dressmaker as Elly saves William Cotterell and her destiny might just take a different path from the one mapped out for her by others.
We follow Elly as she learns about her own family’s hidden secrets and her feelings as she gets to know these two very different men, Cardew and Cotterell. Will her instincts serve her well?
If you’ve read the previous books in the series you will recognise characters such as Sir James Polcarrow and the Pendarvis family, but it won’t ruin your enjoyment of this story if The Cornish Dressmaker is your first introduction to the work of Nicola Pryce.
With intrigue and social injustice, smuggling and new engineering innovations, the book is packed full of details relating to a bygone era. You really do want Elly to win out against all the odds. I’d certainly recommend this and the rest of the books in the series and I’ve added my Amazon Affiliate link below for your reference in case you fancy reading The Cornish Dressmaker for yourself.
disclosure: we were sent the item mentioned in exchange for an honest review