Historical Fiction

Gilded Girl, by Pamela Kelley

Beginning in London in the 1890s, we follow the journey of ladies’ maid Eliza Chapman, who discovers she is the illegitimate daughter of one of Manhattan’s wealthiest businessmen. Aided by her current employer, Eliza embarks on a luxurious solo trip across the sea to begin her life as a New York heiress.

A very loose Cinderella story, Gilded Girl tackles themes like class distinction and the role of women in an age where suffrage was just beginning to be a topic of conversation. Eliza must confront a new family, a new country, and the myriad of choices and constraints that accompany her new station in life. The rules are many–from how to spend one’s time to who to marry and why. Eliza learns that different people interpret these rules in different ways, which isn’t easy as she still wants to remain a humble, appreciative young woman.

This was an excellent read that kept my attention from start to finish. The pacing is satisfying, the settings are lush, and the characters are very distinct. Eliza is a wonderful protagonist and a credit to women of any age and time period. I recommend it! Available with a Kindle Unlimited subscription.

9/10 Stars

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