BOOK CLUB: The Chocolate Maker’s Wife

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Author: Karen Brooks
ISBN: 9781489261458
RRP: $32.99
Publication Date: 18 February 2019
Publisher: HQ Fiction
Copy: Courtesy of the Publisher

The Chocolate Maker’s Wife is a weighty historical fiction novel that brings women back into the history books.

Brooks writes meticulously researched historical fiction that brings her chosen time period into stark relief. The Chocolate Maker’s Wife takes us back to 17th Century London in a time of great turmoil.

The Chocolate Maker’s Wife is a story of cruelty, revenge and redemption as well as love and hope. It is sure to captivate and shed light on a period of history many know little about. It is certainly a time I have little knowledge of.

Brooks is known to deftly weave historical figures and events with her own imagination to create a captivating tale. I have only read one of her previous novels, The Locksmith’s Daughter, and I loved it; despite the fact that history has never been my strong point.

Synopsis from the Publisher’s Website:

Damnation has never been so sweet…

When Rosamund Tomkins enters the world she is so different, with her darkling eyes and strange laughter, that the midwives are afraid, believing her a changeling. But Rosamund’s life is set to be anything but enchanted…

Born into poverty, brutalised and ignored by her family, it is only when she is married off to a nobleman that her life undergoes a wondrous transformation, as he recognises that Rosamund infuses magic she does not know she possesses into everything she touches.

Clever, quick and irrepressible, Rosamund soon becomes the darling of the haute ton, and presides over her luxurious chocolate house where the rich go to be seen and indulge in their favourite pastime, drinking the sweet and heady drink to which they’ve become oddly addicted.

But Rosamund stands on the brink of losing all she has worked so hard to achieve and will be forced to make a choice: walk away from all she knows and has grown to love with her soul intact, or make a deal with the devil?

I can’t wait to delve into this one, the decadence, debauchery and deliciousness of the early years of chocolate. In the meantime I look forward to hearing what our readers thought.

Karen Brooks can be found on Twitter, Facebook and her Website.

The Chocolate Maker’s Wife is available now through HQ Fiction and where all good books are sold.

Thanks to HQ Fiction 15 of our Beauty and Lace club members will be reading and reviewing The Chocolate Maker’s Wife so please be aware there may be spoilers in the comments.

13 thoughts on “BOOK CLUB: The Chocolate Maker’s Wife

  1. This is a massive read, at 552 pages plus extras it is a huge undertaking. I have to say that it took me a while to become completely engrossed in this novel, not because I wasn’t enjoying the story, because I was, but because I got rather annoyed with being told over and over how our heroine’s beauty and laugh and smile were so wonderful that everyone around her was completely changed when she shone any of these things upon them. It got to the stage I actually started rolling my eyes. As the story progressed, we heard a bit less about these incredible qualities and I was able to enjoy the story much more, by the 150 mark I was loath to put the book down to go to bed and despite the size of it, I did indeed take it to bed to read. It was a fascinating look at a time in London’s history that I had little knowledge about and I was eager to keep reading both for the history and for the storyline itself. There were some secrets we uncover near the end that I had for the most part already figured out, but there were times I was completely on edge about what was going to befall our characters next. I really loved our heroine by the end of the story and was hoping everything would work out for her. I loved the way she treated everyone as equal and gave everyone a chance. I loved the characters who were her constant companions, I even came to enjoy her cousin Sam, despite my initial dislike of him. I really enjoyed this giant read and will definitely be looking at Karen Brooks’ previous novels.

  2. The Chocolate Makers Wife by Karen Brooks. The book transports the reader back to life in the early 1600’s, where the struggles are real and even more so for women.

    The story of Rosamund and her struggle from birth to the end it would seem to be her lot in life. Sold off by a mother to an older man Rosamund is not sure what will become of her life.

    Sir Everard is the owner of a Chocolate House in London, who’s only interest in Rosamund is for her to run his chocolate house. The story unfolds around making the perfect chocolate blend and it seems that Rosamund is also thinking she will have the perfect future with her past life of struggles and torment well behind her.

    An old debt long forgotten has risen and needs to be repaid and revenge to be had…. But at what cost. A fascinating tale of history, family, love and betrayal and of course the wonderful sin known as Chocolate.

    Thank you Beauty and Lace and Harlequin Australia, a great read thank you, a book to curl up with a good cup of hot chocolate and take your time as it is a long book …but worth the read.

  3. The Chocolate Maker’s Wife was a really surprising gem. For me it started off slowly, but once I was into Rosamund’s character I found putting the book down difficult. The story follows Rosamund as she is picked seemingly out of the gutter and married off to a far older nobleman. Once washed and clothed in the appropriate attire, her husband soon realises the smart, beautiful woman he has had the fortune to come across. Rosamund faces many challenges in the business and family life she is thrust into and the story cleverly intertwines her fate with the rich history of England at the time resulting in this book being more history than fiction. I grew to love the setting and its rich history, the often times quirky characters and the building romance that could only be hoped for resulted in a happy ending. I did however find the many dramatic events towards the end draining and would have preferred a (slightly) shorter finish, but would still recommend to any historical fiction & romance fans.
    Thanks to Beauty & Lace and Harlequin for the opportunity to review.

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