Shadows of the Muse
Spanning the Georgian and early Victorian periods in Britain, Shadows of the Muse follows the lives of several young women who attended Reading School for Girls headed by the genial Monsieur Dominique de St Quentin.
After the school relocates to Hans Place in London, de St Quentin’s protégée, Frances Rowden, inspires many of her pupils to become authors. As the story progresses, Caroline Ponsonby writes of her torrid relationship with Lord Byron, Mary Mitford records anecdotes of country life to support her family, Rosina Bulwer lobbies for social reform, and the prodigy Letitia Landon achieves renown as a poet.
In addition, Mary Butt and Emma Roberts, also influenced by de St Quentin and Frances Rowden, record impressions of their travels to the east, describing a culture far beyond the imagination of the British public.
Connected to the same literary circle, the poet Caroline Norton befriends the author of Frankenstein, Mary Wollstonecraft-Shelley, and meets Fanny Kemble, a member of the famous theatre family.
Yet these characters experience many challenges as they attempt to negotiate a society unwilling to accept them at their true worth; and the result is often nothing less than heart-breaking.
The dilemmas faced by these gifted individuals continues to confound – the twists and turns of fate they experienced would daunt the most fearless amongst us!
Specs:210 x 148mm, 166 pages, Paperback