Book Tour Entertaining Mr. Pepys

Hello Bookish Friends,

It’s Finally Friday

Today I’m really excited to be taking part in the Book Tour of, Entertaining Mr.Pepys
by Deborah Swift, which is being hosted by HFBT

Don’t forget to enter this wonderful Giveaway at the end of my post.

Entertaining Mr. Pepys
by Deborah Swift

Publication Date: September 12, 2019
Hachette Book Group
eBook. Paperback, Audiobook; 400 Pages

Genre: Historical Fiction

 

 

London 1666

Elizabeth ‘Bird’ Carpenter has a wonderful singing voice, and music is her chief passion. When her father persuades her to marry horse-dealer Christopher Knepp, she suspects she is marrying beneath her station, but nothing prepares her for the reality of life with Knepp. Her father has betrayed her trust, for Knepp cares only for his horses; he is a tyrant and a bully, and will allow Bird no life of her own.

When Knepp goes away, she grasps her chance and, encouraged by her maidservant Livvy, makes a secret visit to the theatre. Entranced by the music, the glitter and glamour of the surroundings, and the free and outspoken manner of the women on the stage, she falls in love with the theatre and is determined to forge a path of her own as an actress.

But life in the theatre was never going to be straightforward – for a jealous rival wants to spoil her plans, and worse, Knepp forbids it, and Bird must use all her wit and intelligence to change his mind.

Based on events depicted in the famous Diary of Samuel Pepys, Entertaining Mr Pepys brings London in the 17th Century to life. It includes the vibrant characters of the day such as the diarist himself and actress Nell Gwynne, and features a dazzling and gripping finale during the Great Fire Of London.

The third in Deborah Swift’s atmospheric trilogy, bringing to life the women in Pepys’ Diary. Each novel features a different character and can be read as a stand-alone book.

‘A remarkably beguiling read. It transported me to the glitter and filth of seventeenth century London’ –Martine Bailey, author of The Almanack

‘The fusion of historical facts and fiction is so flawless that it is hard to know where reality ends and fiction begins’ –Readers Favourite Review

Amazon | Book Depository

Praise for the Pepys Trilogy

‘Swift is a consummate historical novelist, basing her books on immaculate research and then filling the gaps between real events and real people with eloquent storytelling, atmospheric scene setting and imaginative plot lines’ – The Visitor

‘A novel that transports readers with astonishing and engrossing detail’ – Readers Favorite 5*

‘Pepys and his world spring to vibrant life Gripping, revealing and stunningly imagined’ -Lancashire Evening Post

This book was received from the Author, and Publisher, in exchange for an honest review. Opinions and thoughts expressed in this review are completely my own

The third in Deborah Swift’s atmospheric trilogy, bringing to life the women in Pepys’ Diary. Each novel features a different character and can be read as a stand-alone book.

A remarkably beguiling read. It transported me to the glitter and filth of seventeenth century London’ –Martine Bailey, author of The AlmanackThe fusion of historical facts and fiction is so flawless that it is hard to know where reality ends and fiction begins’ –Readers Favourite Review

These wonderful books intertwine with each other, but are complete stand-alones, so you can read them in any order.

Based on events depicted in the famous Diary of Samuel Pepys

Entertaining Mr Pepys, is an astonishing book that brings, Restoration London in the 17th Century completely to life. Mary Elisabeth “Bird” Carpenter was born into an affluent family. and has had a leisurely comfortable life in her father’s house until he married a woman named Dorcas. Dorcas wants her stepdaughter removed from out under her house and has her husband was so wrapped around her finger that he didn’t pay enough heed in selecting a husband for his daughter, Bird

When Christopher Knepp a livery owner showed an interest in marrying Bird in exchange for a modest dowry, her father agrees, What followed is a miserable horrific life for Bird. Constantly abused by her husband, and completely forgotten by her father, she befriends Livvy, her Dutch maid, living in England.

Mary Elizabeth ‘Bird’ Knepp, in a series of events attends a theatrical production at the theater. Bird notices the freedom and outspoken manner of the women on the stage, and falls in love with the glamorous lifestyle of the stage. The reopening of the theatres after the Restoration, women were allowed for the first time to act on the stage. Previously, female roles had been performed by young boys. This dramatic change opened up a world of titillation and scandal.

Bird, cleverly comes up with a plan to join the theater company, in hopping to raise enough money to leave her vile vicious husband, Knepp. Knepp is reluctant to allow his wife to go on stage, (to tread the boards). So Bird, Devise a plan and presents him a business opportunity for his failing livery.

I loved everything about this book from the gritty, back-streets to dramatic theater as our main protagonist catches the eye of an avid theatre-goer Samuel Pepys.Swift is a masterly storyteller, her writing is exceptional, her characters are three Dimensional, with complex layers. The characters became more fleshed with progression of the storyline.

Deborah Swift, infuses historical facts along with her own creative fiction, with some of the best authentic atmospheric details I have ever read before.The author touches on current events at that time, political turmoil, and religious persecution, along with slavery set to London’s seedy backdrop.

Compelling well diverse characters that were engaging, along with historical descriptive details of working-class people in 1660s London. The ending had me on the edge of my seat as Swift, depicts the chaos and devastation wrought by the Great Fire of 1666.

Samuel Pepys portrait from 1666 by J. Hayls

The actress Eleanor ‘Nell’ Gwyn

Despite some opposition to women on stage – some thought the profession ‘shameful’ and ‘unwomanish’ – the majority reaction appears to have been a positive one.

Pepys clearly appreciated seeing these new beautiful and talented actresses, which included Hester Davenport, Mary ‘Moll’ Davis, Mary Saunderson and Elizabeth Knepp (all mentioned in the diary), and seems never to have been that convinced by men playing female roles. In March 1667 he wrote, ‘to the Theatre, and there saw The Scornfull Lady, now done by a woman, which makes the play appear much better than ever it did to me’. His positive reaction was shared by the King, also a keen theatre-goer, who saw the stage as a lucrative source of mistresses too. 

About the Author

Deborah Swift is the author of three previous historical novels for adults, The Lady,Slipper, The Gilded Lily, and A Divided Inheritance, all published by Macmillan/St Martin Press, as well as the Highway Trilogy for teens (and anyone young at heart!). Her first novel was shortlisted for the Impress prize for new novelists.

She lives on the edge of the beautiful and literary English Lake District a place made famous by the poets Wordsworth and Coleridge.

For more information, please visit Deborah Swift website. You can also find her on Facebook, Twitter, and Goodreads.

Blog Tour Schedule

Thursday, November 21
Excerpt at The Lit Bitch
Review at Reading the Past

Friday, November 22
Review at Gwendalyn’s Books
Guest Post at The Writing Desk

Monday, November 25
Review & Excerpt at Book Reviews from Canada

Tuesday, November 26
Review at A Book Geek

Wednesday, November 27
Guest Post at Short Book and Scribes

Thursday, November 28
Feature at To Read, Or Not to Read

Friday, November 29
Review at Locks, Hooks and Books
Guest Post at What Is That Book About

Monday, December 2
Review at Passages to the Past

Tuesday, December 3
Excerpt at Broken Teepee

Wednesday, December 4
Interview at Passages to the Past

Friday, December 6
Excerpt at Donna’s Book Blog

Monday, December 9
Review at Red Headed Book Lady

Tuesday, December 10
Excerpt at Words and Peace

Wednesday, December 11
Review at Hopewell’s Public Library of Life

Thursday, December 12
Feature at Coffee and Ink

Giveaway

During the Blog Tour, we are giving away a signed copy of Entertaining Mr. Pepys! To enter, please use the Gleam form below.

Giveaway Rules

Giveaway ends at 11:59 pm EST on December 12th. You must be 18 or older to enter.
Paperback giveaway is open internationally.
Only one entry per household.
All giveaway entrants agree to be honest and not cheat the systems; any suspicion of fraud will be decided upon by blog/site owner and the sponsor, and entrants may be disqualified at our discretion.
The winner has 48 hours to claim prize or a new winner is chosen.

Entertaining Mr. Pepys

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