Spotlight on Literary Heroines: Nancy Drew

For Women’s History Month this year, I’ve been so excited to write lots for my blog and have been thinking of themes to go with – and then it hit me when I was reading a really interesting book by the Women’s Studies Group. Reading Women. I’ve been wanting to read more and more books…

Review: “Sanditon” by Jane Austen & Kate Riordan

This is such a treat of a review for me today – I’m so grateful to Grand Central Publishing for gifting me a copy of Sanditon to read and review to coincide with its release in the US on PBS. Did you catch the first episode on Sunday? I have a confession to make: although…

Review & Book Tour: “There’s Something About Darcy”, by Gabrielle Malcolm

I've been invited to do something a bit different today, which is incredibly exciting: I'm hosting Dr Gabrielle Malcolm's new book, There's Something About Darcy, on my blog for the day as part of her blog book tour! As soon as I heard about Malcolm's book, I knew it was for me - as someone who…

Lola Montez: The Fascinating Life of a Queen of Reinvention (1821-1861)

London Stereoscopic and Photographic Company, Portrait of Lola Montez, unknown date. Scottish National Portrait Gallery, PGP 837.28. Today I wanted to write about a female figure in history who completely fascinates me: Lola Montez. I first heard about Lola Montez in a song (a fantastic song you can find here) by Volbeat, and after listening…

Review: “Jane Austen’s Inspiration: Beloved Friend Anne Lefroy”, by Judith Stove

I’ve been lucky enough to start working with the lovely people at Pen and Sword books in reviewing history books – and could my first choice be anything but Jane Austen themed? Judith Stove’s “Jane Austen’s Inspiration: Beloved Friend Anne Lefroy” looks to Jane’s close friend (and aunt to the famous love interest of Jane’s,…

A Tour of Christian Dior: Designer of Dreams

Look 24 Dress, Christian Dior by John Galliano, Autumn/Winter 2004. If there is anything I learned last Saturday morning in the beautiful Christian Dior exhibition at the V&A, is that Dior really is the Designer of my Dreams. Firstly, it was a dream to get a ticket to the extended run of the sold out…

Walking in the footsteps of Jane Austen in Hampshire

Even though I wax lyrical on every single platform about how much I love Jane Austen, I’ve never visited her house at Chawton or her grave in Winchester Cathedral – until this week. We went on a lovely trip to Hampshire and had a beautiful day (helped by the British sunshine) exploring Jane Austen’s House…

An Enquiring Mind: Manolo Blahnik at The Wallace Collection

I realised a couple of weeks ago that, even though I’ve spent plenty of time visiting galleries and museums in London, that I’d never actually been to the Wallace Collection. I have been meaning to go for ages, and decided that, last weekend, I had a free morning in London and it was time to…

REVIEW: “Only A Novel: The Double Life of Jane Austen”, by Jane Aiken Hodge

Today Agora Books are re-publishing Jane Aiken Hodge’s study of Jane Austen, and I was lucky enough to have been gifted an advance copy to review, so thank you Agora! As anyone who knows me might have guessed, I jumped at the chance to review a book about not only my favourite author but also…

Rosalba Carriera (1675-1757)

A Muse, Rosalba Carriera, mid-1720s, pastel on laid blue paper (Getty Museum, 2003.17) Digital image courtesy of the Getty's Open Content Program. On Monday 12th June 1741, Henrietta Fermor, Countess of Pomfret, was exploring Venice with her travel companions. She had been on a Grand Tour with her husband and two of her daughters since…