The Disgrace of Kitty Grey by Mary Hooper
Published 9 May 2013 Bloomsbury
I am a huge fan of Mary Hooper's historical teen fiction so when a friend passed this proof on to me I was thrilled.
Kitty is a dairymaid in the 1800s. She loves her work and her cows and her sweetheart Will, the local ferryman.
When Will disappears leaving his little sister with Kitty, she is furious - sure he has abandoned them to make his fortune in London. When her mistress askes Kitty to collect Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice from a bookshop in London (nice tie with the P&P 200th birthday!), Kitty is only too happy to oblige. Just how hard would it be to find Will in London and reunite him with his sister? Poor country Kitty has no idea.
The novel is well paced and wonderfully descriptive - I flew through this book reading of all of Kitty's trials and tribulations. The character of Kitty is very likeable. She's a good girl so her desperate plight was distressing in places.
As always, Mary Hooper's historical settings are magical and the novel includes some historical notes on Newgate Prison and transportation as well as a butter-making method perfect for your inner dairymaid!