Beautiful Lies

Clare Clark Harvill

Beautiful Lies

It is 1887, and an unsettled London is preparing for Queen Victoria's Golden Jubilee. For Maribel Campbell Lowe, the beautiful, bohemian wife of a maverick politician, it is the year she plans to make her own mark on the world. But her husband's outspoken views inspire enmity as well as admiration - and the wife of a member of parliament should not be hiding the kind of secrets Maribel has buried in her past. When a notorious newspaper editor begins to take an uncommon interest in her, Maribel fears he will destroy not only her husband's career but both of their reputations. "Beautiful Lies" is set in a Jubilee year that, fraught with economic uncertainty, riots and tabloid scandal-mongering, uncannily presages our own. 4.3 out of 5 based on 5 reviews
Beautiful Lies

Omniscore:

Classification Fiction
Genre General Fiction
Format Hardcover
Pages 512
RRP
Date of Publication July 2012
ISBN 978-1846556050
Publisher Harvill Secker
 

It is 1887, and an unsettled London is preparing for Queen Victoria's Golden Jubilee. For Maribel Campbell Lowe, the beautiful, bohemian wife of a maverick politician, it is the year she plans to make her own mark on the world. But her husband's outspoken views inspire enmity as well as admiration - and the wife of a member of parliament should not be hiding the kind of secrets Maribel has buried in her past. When a notorious newspaper editor begins to take an uncommon interest in her, Maribel fears he will destroy not only her husband's career but both of their reputations. "Beautiful Lies" is set in a Jubilee year that, fraught with economic uncertainty, riots and tabloid scandal-mongering, uncannily presages our own.

Savage Lands by Clare Clark.

Reviews

The Independent

Lucy Scholes

Nothing less than literary pyrotechnics. Beautiful Lies is a dazzlingly elegant novel steeped in the rich detail of the period.

07/07/2012

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The Daily Mail

James Walton

Clark seems to have set herself the challenge of including as many elements of 19th-century literature as possible - from the political sagas of Anthony Trollope to the bracing melodrama of Victorian shockers. Yet, not only does she bring it off, in a hugely entertaining and generous piece of story-telling, she also manages to make the whole thing feel completely coherent.

21/06/2012

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The Sunday Times

Nick Rennison

Clark works on a large canvas to tell her story and Beautiful Lies is rich in character, event and period detail, but it is the compelling evocation of its heroine’s predicament that stays in the memory.

22/07/2012

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The Economist

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Ms Clark takes her time with this long, undulating novel. But fans of historical fiction will not be put off by this. She builds the story with discreet layering and surprises for the reader about Maribel’s adventures. Descriptions of photographing “Buffalo Bill’s Wild West”, investigating a gold mine in Spain and liaising with a prostitute in an elaborate blackmailing plan all add colour.

23/06/2012

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The Financial Times

Adrian Turpic

A royal jubilee, tabloid papers overstepping the mark, social unrest and a struggling economy: the London of 1887 looks oddly familiar in Clark’s fourth novel. Only the Olympics are absent; instead, Buffalo Bill Cody and his native tribesmen draw millions with their recreation of the Wild West at Earls Court. While the parallels are never laboured, they give this beautifully crafted piece of Victoriana a sharp contemporary twist ... Her greatest achievement, however, is to create a credible portrait of 19th-century London free from the overpowering influence of Dickens.

15/06/2012

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