Girl in a Blue Dress: A Novel Inspired by the Life and Marriage of Charles Dickens

Girl in a Blue Dress: A Novel Inspired by the Life and Marriage of Charles Dickens

Gaynor Arnold

on the finish of her lifestyles, Catherine, the cast-off spouse of Charles Dickens, gave the letters she had got from her husband to their daughter Kate, asking her to donate them to the British Museum, “so the area may possibly recognize that he enjoyed me once.” The excellent vulnerability and heartache obvious underneath the outside of this comment encouraged Gaynor Arnold to put in writing Girl in a Blue Dress, a blinding debut novel encouraged via the lifetime of this tragic but dedicated girl. Arnold brings the spirit of Catherine Dickens to existence within the type of Dorothea “Dodo” Gibson–a girl who's doomed to stay within the shadow of her husband, Alfred, the main celebrated writer within the Victorian international.

The tale opens at the day of Alfred’s funeral. Dorothea isn't really one of the throngs in attendance whilst the only and merely is laid to leisure. Her mourning needs to ensue in the partitions of her modest condo, a parting reward from Alfred as he ushered her out in their shared domestic and his lifestyles greater than a decade prior. Even her personal young children, retailer her outspoken daughter Kitty, aren't there to supply her comfort–they have been poisoned opposed to her whilst Alfred publicly declared her an not worthy spouse and mom. notwithstanding she refuses to don the correct mourning dresses, Dodo can't convey herself to demonize her past due husband, anything that comes all too simply to Kitty.

Instead, she displays on their time together–their clandestine and passionate courtship, whilst he was once a strength of nature and he or she a keen follower; and the salad days in their marriage, sooner than too many little ones sapped her energy and his curiosity. She uncovers the frighteningly hypnotic energy of the fame writer she married. Now liberated from his carry on her, Dodo unearths the braveness to stand her grownup kids, the sister who betrayed her, and the captivating actress who claimed her husband’s love and left her middle aching.

A sweeping story of affection and loss that was once long-listed for either the fellow Booker Prize and the Orange Prize, Girl in a Blue Dress is either an intimate peek on the lady who used to be at the back of one among literature’s so much esteemed males and a desirable rumination on marriage that would resonate throughout centuries.

From the Hardcover edition.

Show sample text content

Download sample