The Last Duchess
Laura Powell, Sarah Gibb
Meet heroic maid Pattern in The Last Duchess, the first Silver Service Mystery from Laura Powell, illustrated by Sarah Gibb.
Pattern is only thirteen, but is already rising through the ranks at Mrs Minchin’s Academy of Domestic Servitude and seems destined for a life below stairs. But fate intervenes when she is packed off to the small and secretive Duchy of Elffinberg, to serve as lady’s maid to the recently orphaned Grand Duchess.
Pattern’s young new mistress is excitable and paranoid, yet despite their differences the two girls forge an unlikely friendship that quickly turns into a battle for survival. For picture-perfect Elffinberg hides an extremely dark and deadly secret . . .
Armed only with her trusty sewing basket, a bottle of smelling salts and J. Bulcock’s inestimable guide, The Duties of a Lady’s Maid, Pattern will need all her wits and resourcefulness when dealing with above-stairs conspiracies and below-stairs intrigue. Darning stockings has never been so dangerous.
An atmospheric, intriguing mystery. * Guardian * A mystery with magic and friendship at its heart and a sharp dagger in its tail. * Booktrust * Plenty of plot twists and intrigue in [this] cracking adventure from below stairs. * Sunday Express S Magazine * With its atmospheric fairy tale backdrop, cast of amazing characters, lashings of dark humour and devilish twist in the tail, The Last Duchess is an entertaining blend of real life and fantasy. There are warm friendships to enjoy, an intriguing mystery to solve and plenty of adventures, dramas and danger to set the pulse racing. * Lancashire Evening Post * Written with a light, deft touch, there is mystery, humour, loyalty and friendship well balanced throughout the book. A very good read. * Parents in Touch * The background to this excellent story, the first in a series, is well-constructed and colourful . . . The tension continues right until the final pages, ably assisted by Sarah Gibb's delightful illustrations, and readers will look forward eagerly to Pattern's further adventures. * The Book Bag * [An] excellent new series . . . a terrific story of courage, friendship, courtly intrigue and magic. * Lovereading4kids.co.uk *
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