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Ratings and Book Reviews (6 42 star ratings
6 reviews
)

Overall rating

4.5 out of 5
5 Stars
25
4 Stars
15
3 Stars
1
2 Stars
1
1 Star
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All Book Reviews

  • A good read, recommended

    This book is as good as the first one in this series. I was happy to keep on reading this saga and I found it entertaining and engrossing. A good read, recommended. Many thanks to the publisher and Netgalley for this ARC, all opinions are mine.

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  • A Superb Read!

    Exactly what I expected from this talented author: a wonderful second book in series! Life at Harpers department store is busier than ever, and our four women are kept on their toes all day long. Now that they are sharing a home, their friendships are sealed and life is moving on for all of them . . . I love Rosie Clarke's series'; I adored The Women of Mulberry Lane and, as I settled in to read this second book I realised that I cherish the characters in Harpers every bit as much. Each one is skilfully crafted, all with completely separate identities and yet they meld together beautifully. As time moves on, it's only natural that love and marriage will enter the equation but there is so much more to this book. Each woman's life is different to the other, and the author doesn't shy away from including the realities of life in the period setting. If ever women should be grateful to the Suffragist Movement, then this book will bring home exactly how much they could NOT do for themselves and how important using our vote is. With the story moving along at a scudding pace, there is also plenty of scope for a third novel and I find myself looking forward to it already. A superb read, as always, fully earning all five sparkling stars!

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  • Like it!!!

    This is a good story but what I don't like is the time we pass reading on the details on what was sold every day. I find that a little bit boring. But I like the storyline and I look forward to know what will happen to the characters during the war.

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  • Love and marriage at harpers

    What a great book I laughed I cried, all the girls had their own stories it was so nice they all stayed involved im each others lives. It is lovely to have good friends

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  • A Deceptive Title

    The second installment of the Harpers Emporium series follows Beth, Sally, Maggie, and Rachel roughly a year after the conclusion of the first book in the series, London in the year 1913. Not much has changed for the girls; they’re all happy with their current living situation, together in their cozy flat home after a full day of working together at Harpers. Again, their never-questioning friendship remains the core of the series, a true testament to female relationships. This time around, there’s a light dive into the English women’s suffrage movement of the time. Though we hear about the girls attending meetings and supporting the cause, they talk about it more often than we see it, something that I wish was dealt with further. It seems a natural progression in a series that focuses on the strength of female friendship with such On the other side of things, most of the men -- save wise old Fred -- come across as inconsistent and unpredictable, at times semi-abusive to their respective partners. I would normally think this a comment by the author on the general qualities of the men of the time -- admittedly one very different from our present; however, the women in question declare they are happy and in love with these men so the choice comes across as romanticizing possessive and jealous men in romances that are portrayed as “ideal”. For example, we have a man who constantly lies about his history and motives be forgiven and hint at a future romance. We have a man treat a woman harshly and with aloofness because he assumes she is seeing someone else -- despite the fact that he has laid no claim to her so far. And we have a wife pretend to be sexually satisfied to make her husband happy, despite the fact that his own actions are inherently selfish. It’s quite disheartening to see, especially when this book was published in the year 2020, a time I’d like to think of as far more progressive than 1913. The severity of certain subjects from the first book are dealt with more seriously here -- we have murder, a serial killer, attempted rape, and a miscarriage all in quick succession. It’s heavy stuff and is not given the weight such topics deserve. It should be said that these plot points feel entirely out of place in a novel that is described as and appears in most cases to be a light, surface level period piece, When it reads as more of a narrative than a series of events making up a plot, the seriousness of certain issues falls flat and without impact, and undermines the gravity they should bear. Again, thoroughly researched and obviously written by a fan of the times, this felt like a first draft that could definitely have used more development, as well as the perspective of sensitivity readers. Thanks to the publishers for providing a copy of the book in exchange for a fair and honest review! Trigger warning: domestic violence/abuse, insinuated murder, attempted murder, attempted rape, miscarriage, death.

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