Nancie Knight’s world falls apart when her father dies and she is forced to go into service as a scullery maid. Never in her wildest dreams would she have envisaged such hard work, slaving from dawn to dusk. The housekeeper of The Manor, Miss Higginbottom, does not allow her any slack and the cook, Mrs Bell can never remember her name. Promises that she will soon be reunited with her mother and baby brother amount to nothing. On her first afternoon off, she falls and hurts herself, and then is stricken with an allergic reaction from burdock. She is accused of stealing candlesticks, and when she hears strange noises coming from one of the attic rooms, she goes to investigate. Disobeying an order not to pursue the matter, she is sacked and forced to leave.
A man takes her in, offering her a job, but she runs away after he beats her up. She is then befriended by a shepherd’s wife and goes to live with her and her family. Eventually, three years later, she returns to work at The Manor to find the girl with two heads, whom she had found in the attic, still there. Her mother turns up but tells her she is going to America and cannot take Nancie with her. The mistress of the house finds a solution: Nancie is to go travelling with one of the mistress’s friends as her companion.
A well written and researched book. So well is the period of this book described a wonderful picture comes into your mind of difficult times , dreams and laughter .
I do not think a book has made me laugh out loud as this one did . A must read for all lovers of this period and lovers of a gripping story one that takes your imagination and mind into Victorian England , with beautiful scenery , characters you will not forget plus an ending that leads you to want more .
Well done to the author .