November 23, 2011

Victoria’s Royal Secret is a fascinating insight into the household of a young Victoria before she became queen.  Tales of intrigue, bullying, deceit and greed, woven together by  a modern day Sarah with her own chaotic love life, make for a great story with a cracking pace.  I could hardly put it down.

Initially, keeping track of the dates and when each diarist was writing was hard work, but it didn’t take long for the story to get going and as the plot thickened, the dates became less important.

The development of Lady Flora’s character from that of a woman of questionable morals into that of a woman misread and misrepresented was brilliantly executed and I finished feeling desperately sorry for her and disgust for bitchy Victoria and her Lehzen.  And what of Sir John’s wife?  Where was she while he was leading Flora on (or was he?) and taking advantage of a vulnerable Duchess?  Was she as tragic as “the tragic Lady Flora Hastings”?

All in all, a thoroughly enjoyable read and I look forward to the next one from Philippa Dissel.
Belinda Jackson

I loved the book, and couldn’t get over how much research and knowledge you had on the subject.  It really made history come alive and I think it is a real work of art.
Congratulations, and here’s to a best-seller!
Sue Tiley

Philippa Dissel has written a meticulously-researched historical page-turner based on a premise which will rock British royalists – Queen Victoria was illegitimate! Dissel makes this contention seem feasible in a layered novel, set in London in contrasted  millennia. Dissel asks her readers to shuttle back and forth in time as her heroine uses modern technology to exposes secrets and lies in the Victorian court that call the lineage of Britain’s royal family into question.
Barbara Erasmus – Author : Kaleidoscope, Even With Insects (Published by Penguin)

Loved the modern and the ancient – found it invigorating to read and the sort of book you want to close yourself in and read right through to the end.   Have always appreciated her mastery of the English language.  Obvious that there was a lot of research done.
Annalise Swanepoel