Suffragettes, Circuses, tigers and journalists: a bizarre jaunt around Victorian London in The Hourglass Factory

Book Reviews, Book Thoughts, London, Writing

IMG_8738 Frankie George is sent by her newspaper for her first proper piece – a profile of suffragette-trapeze artist Ebony Diamond. But while she’s on the trail, Ebony lashes out at her then disappears mysteriously in the middle of her performance. Frankie gains a snake-charmer and dubious errand boy as sidekicks along the way as well as meeting a vast variety of characters, and quest to find Miss Diamond uncovers plots and secrets that she would never have dreamt of. 

I really, really, wanted to really really like this book. I started reading it just before Christmas, and with Victorian London, Suffragettes, circuses, plots, mysteries and journalists I was anticipating a novel of complete delight. And true, some of it was there. The plot swung around a huge variety of intriguing settings, bizarre twists and colourful characters – but for me, ultimately, this novel was lacking.