Ciska's Book Chest

I am an eclectic reader with preferences for crime/thriller/suspense, historical fiction, literature and contemporary fiction. For more books and other bookish posts visit my blog at Ciska's Book Chest

The Fortunes of Grace Hammer of the Victorian Underworld

The Fortunes of Grace Hammer: A Novel of the Victorian Underworld - Sara Stockbridge The authorSara Stockbridge (born Sarah Jane Stockbridge on 14 November 1965 in Woking, Surrey, England)is an English model, actress and author who achieved a certain level of high fashion notoriety in the mid to late 1980s as the muse of designer Vivenne Westwood. She has a son and a daughter from previous relationships. Currently she resides in London where she keeps busy with her band Rooster.The synopsisWhitechapel, 1888. Grace Hammer and her children live comfortably in Bell Lane, their home a little oasis in the squalor of London’s East End. They make their living picking the pockets of wealthy strangers foolish enough to venture there. But Grace’s history is about to catch up with her. Out in the countryside Mr. Blunt rocks in his chair, vowing furious retribution. He has never forgotten his scarlet treasure, or the coquettish young woman who stole it from him. The reviewI saw this book in the bookstore and read the synopsis. I was really enthusiastic, Oliver Twist and Jack the Ripper in one book and a female protagonist. As soon as I found an excuse to stuff it in a challenge I grabbed it. So I will start with the characters. The author managed to clearly personalize the characters. Grace is a very strong willed woman. She is trying to survive with her children in a way that she thinks is acceptable. She did not learn her daughter to steal for example. She also spending the money for entertainment for her children and food and clothes for them all. The children all have clear characters too though one action of Jake kind of surprised me, I did not see that one coming. Mr. Blunt stars out as a scary little man but grows out to be an evil spirit fed by hate for Grace, you really get shivers down your spine the way he is described. Same with some other characters. The story is a different thing though. I had a struggle reading it. The one sentence is written from the POV from Grace and the next sentence is written about her. It jumps up and down like that and it really takes a bit to get into it. As soon as you pick up a pace it will get easier to go trough it but every time you have to get in it again. This was irritating me enough that I considered giving the book only two stars. Still the story itself was entertaining enough. The atmosphere was clear and the characters where good. So three stars. But be careful if you want to pick up this book, read the first pages in the bookstore and see if you can deal with that style cause if you can not it will disappoint you.