Publication Date: 22/06/2023 ISBN: 9781529053678 Category:

The Square of Sevens

Laura Shepherd-Robinson

Publisher: Pan Macmillan
Publication Date: 22/06/2023 ISBN: 9781529053678 Category:




The Sunday Times Top Five Bestseller
A BBC Two Between the Covers Book Club Pick

‘A wonderfully inventive novel’ – The Times and Sunday Times, Best Historical Fiction of 2023

Laura Shepherd-Robinson’s The Square of Sevens is an epic and sweeping novel set in Georgian high society, a dazzling story offering up mystery, intrigue, heartbreak, and audacious twists.

This is your story, Red. You must tell it well . . .

A girl known only as Red, the daughter of a Cornish fortune-teller, travels with her father making a living predicting fortunes using the ancient method: the Square of Sevens. When her father suddenly dies, Red becomes the ward of a gentleman scholar.

Now raised as a lady amidst the Georgian splendour of Bath, her fortune-telling is a delight to high society. But she cannot ignore the questions that gnaw at her soul: who was her mother? How did she die? And who are the mysterious enemies her father was always terrified would find him?

The pursuit of these mysteries takes her from Cornwall and Bath to London and Devon, from the rough ribaldry of the Bartholomew Fair to the grand houses of two of the most powerful families in England. And while Red’s quest brings her the possibility of great reward, it also leads her into grave danger . . .

‘A masterpiece’ – Janice Hallett, bestselling author of The Appeal

‘A sweeping Dickensian tour de force of a novel’ – Susan Stokes-Chapman, bestselling author of Pandora

‘I doubt I’ll read a better book this year’ – Chris Whitaker, bestselling author of We Begin at the End

Publisher Review

Laura Shepherd Robinson is a brilliant, brilliant writer, up there with CJ Sansom and Andrew Taylor — James O’Brien A sweeping Dickensian tour de force of a novel, The Square of Sevens is an immaculately researched piece of fiction with all the twists and turns of a fortune teller’s wheel, cementing the author’s place as the queen of modern Georgian literature. Bravo Laura Shepherd-Robinson, I’m in awe! — Susan Stokes-Chapman, bestselling author of Pandora A sprawling, exquisite, outright triumph. The Square of Sevens dazzles with heart, mystery and breathtaking detail. I doubt I’ll read a better book this year — Chris Whitaker, author of We Begin At the End Fortune-telling, hidden documents, priest holes, courtroom drama and dramatic revelations: The Square of Sevens is a deck of cards crammed full with secrets and lies — Leonora Nattrass, author of Black Drop and Blue Water A gorgeously written and plotted Georgian thriller with elements of Moll Flanders, theatre, cartomancy, and Bath. It’s as absorbing as Charles Palliser’s The Quincunx — Amanda Craig, bestselling author of The Golden Rule What a magnificent rollercoaster ride of a book . . . Laura Shepherd-Robinson writes with such a fluid, easy style, with a knack for putting in just the right amount of detail to perfectly paint the world she is describing . . . I am in awe — James Oswald, bestselling author of the Inspector McLean series What a magnificent novel. I would advise any reader to set aside reading time to fully concentrate on this brilliantly complex story. Meticulously researched and beautifully written, this is one of the most intriguing books I have ever read — Liz Nugent, bestselling author of Our Little Cruelties and Strange Sally Diamond Laura Shepherd-Robinson has created an instant classic. Red is unforgettable. The story is a treasure trove of lavish Georgian riches, female ingenuity and bitter betrayal . . . and I didn’t want it to end — Sophia Bennett, author of Her Majesty the Queen Investigates series The Square of Sevens is a cunningly plotted and wonderfully captivating novel that conjures up the Georgian period with a magical touch. Shepherd-Robinson guides us effortlessly through the social and political landscape of the time – the South Sea Bubble, the wonders of science, the complicated manners of Bath society – and populates this terrain, from drawing rooms to backstreets, with a plucky heroine and a cast of hugely engaging characters, each with their own secrets and flaws and all woven together with Dickensian deftness. I defy even the most curmugeonly not to be thoroughly entertained — Liz Fremantle, author of The Queen’s Gambit and The Poison Bed Laura Shepherd-Robinson is a master storyteller and she excels herself with this Dickensian epic. Relentless twists, heartbreaking storylines and impeccable research. It doesn’t get much better than this — Emily Koch, author of Keep Him Close and What July Knew Ever since her bestselling debut, Blood & Sugar, Laura Shepherd-Robinson has made the Georgian era her own. In her latest, The Square of Sevens, she revisits the period, this time following a young girl named Red as she navigates the dark mysteries of her own past and the convoluted – and murderous – machinations of two of the country’s most prominent dynasties warring over a disputed inheritance. A big, meaty, meticulously researched and unashamedly ambitious historical novel — Vaseem Khan, author of The Malabar House series Compelling, thrilling, totally absorbing. The rich period detail never once weighs down the pace of the storytelling in this exhilarating tale where fate and destiny come up against courage and ambition in wealthy, corrupt Georgian society. I loved it — Tammy Cohen, author of The Wedding Party Intricate, compelling and stuffed full of intrigue, The Square of Sevens will sweep you into its world — Fiona Barton, bestselling author of The Widow Pitch-perfect. Laura Shepherd Robinson has done it again- a beautifully strung novel quivering with just the right blend of pace, plot and historical detail. Bravo! — Victoria Selman, author of the bestselling Truly Darkly Deeply This is such a glorious adventure, full of scheming and betrayal, with a delicious whiff of magic at its heart. Our hero holds only a few cards, and she must play them exactly right if she wants to survive — William Shaw, author of the DS Alexandra Cupidi series A very clever, intricate and fascinating novel — Anna Mazzola, author of The Clockwork Girl and House of Whispers It’s impossible to overstate the brilliance Laura Shepherd-Robinson demonstrates in her work. To find a writer with such a clear love and understanding of her subject and have it matched by a sparkling ability to spin a yarn is rare and exciting. The Square of Sevens is an exquisite feat in storytelling: intelligent, dark, surprising, moving, and always entertaining. Shepherd-Robinson’s characters are so brilliantly drawn, the story so richly imagined, and the world she conjures so vivid that I imagined myself there, amidst it all, my heart in my mouth as the players race towards their fate — Charlotte Philby, author of Edith and Kim My favourite Laura Shepherd-Robinson novel yet. Fortune telling, Cornwall and Bath. What’s not to love? Completely compelling and clever, of course. And in Red, a heroine I wanted to spend days with — Joanna Nadin, author of The Double Life of Daisy Hemmings Such brilliant storytelling with twists and turns that leave you breathless. I love Laura’s books and this is her best yet — Julie Owen Moylan, author of That Green Eyed Girl She’s only gone and done it again! What a sumptuous, intricate, masterfully woven and beautifully told story of deception and corruption, power & passion, family secrets and enduring lies. Absolutely exquisite — Erin Young, author of The Fields In The Square of Sevens, Laura Shepherd-Robinson excels at recreating the past – in this case, Georgian England – in an authentic way. She invites us to join fortune teller Red on an epic journey to unravel the secrets of her past and we cannot rest until we have answers. Dazzling — Fiona Cummins, author of When I Was Ten This is a fabulously evocative novel, with a heroine who proves the most wonderful company, and a finely spun mystery which keeps you turning the pages. The Square of Sevens invites you into a magical world which you won’t want to leave — Elodie Harper, author of The Wolf Den trilogy The Square of Sevens isn’t just a five-star read, it’s a fully immersive experience. I lived Red’s quest, rooting for her every step of the way. Loaded with plot and intrigue and sumptuous period detail, this kept me guessing until the end — Caz Frear, author of Shed No Tears This is a book to relish, not rush through. Rich in historical detail, it’s immersive, authoritative and Dickensian in scope. Fundamentally though it’s a damn good story, brilliantly told. I loved it — Harriet Tyce, bestselling author of Blood Orange and It Ends At Midnight

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