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In a nutshell: upstairs downstairs mystery with added magic
Pattern, lady’s maid and the central character in this excellent new series, is a heroine in the Jane Eyre mould: quiet, invisible to the outside world, but brave, fierce, clever. She needs all those qualities too to protect her mistress, the young Duchess of Elffinberg; the duchess is threatened not just by a dragon outside the castle, but by some of those on the inside, who she should really be able to trust. The two girls become friends, and the stage is set for a terrific story of courage, friendship, courtly intrigue and magic.
Detective series starring young women are very much in fashion and this will appeal to fans of Robin Stevens’s Murder Most Unladylike books, but readers should also look out Stephanie Burgis’s The Dragon with a Chocolate Heart, another spritely and inventive story of magic and intrigue. ~ Andrea Reece
Pattern is only thirteen, but is already rising through the ranks at Mrs Minchin's Academy of Domestic Servitude and seems destined for a life below stairs. But fate intervenes when she is packed off to the small and secretive Duchy of Elffinberg, to serve as lady's maid to the lately orphaned Grand Duchess. Pattern's young new mistress is excitable and paranoid, yet despite their differences the two girls forge an unlikely friendship that quickly turns into a battle for survival. For picture-perfect Elffinberg hides an extremely dark and deadly secret ...
Armed only with her trusty sewing basket, a bottle of smelling salts and J. Bulcock's inestimable guide, The Duties of a Lady's Maid, Pattern will need all her wits and resourcefulness when dealing with above-stairs conspiracies and below-stairs intrigue. Darning stockings has never been so dangerous.
In addition to our Lovereading4kids expert opinion some of our Lovereading4kids Reader Review Panel were also lucky enough to read and review this title. Click here to read the full reviews.
|Publication date:||15th June 2017|
|Publisher:||Macmillan Children's Books an imprint of Pan Macmillan|
|Suitable for:||11+ readers, 9+ readers|
|Other Categories:||Reviewed by Children|
Laura Powell, who may or may not be a direct descendant of King Arthur, was born in London, but grew up in the shadow of Carreg Cennen Castle in Wales. Much of her childhood was either spent with her nose firmly in a book, or plotting to escape her boarding school, which she hated. Having studied Classics at university, she now spends her time working for the English National Ballet and writing. She lives in Camberwell with her husband and young son.More About Laura Powell