Dr Sara Read

Dr Sara Read

Academic, Novelist, Grandma, Dog Walker

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Maladies and Medicine

Maladies and Medicine

Health and Healing in History

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Gossip's Choice

A Novel Venture

Firstly, an apology for the time since my last post, but I bring some news!

The Gossips’ Choice

I have been busy writing and securing a contract for my first novel. It is an exciting new venture for me. They say everyone has a novel in them and I certainly did: this one burst forth at a breathtaking pace. In fact, it took months longer to edit, with the assistance of a brilliant and uncompromising editor, than it did to write.

The Gossips’ Choice is a novel about the life of a country midwife in 1665, set against the background of the Great Plague which is raging in London. It has been compared to the excellent BBC series, Call the Midwife because it is episodic in structure with a new birth tale every chapter or so, and a strong family saga running through the whole.

The Gossips’ Choice is an historical novel set in the seventeenth century. In early modern England, the word ‘gossip’ referred to a companion in childbirth. The Gossips’ Choice is the intriguing story of a midwife caught up in the politics of a post revolutionary England.

It will be published in May 2020 and I will be doing a number of events to launch it – all of which will be added to the events page on here as and when they are confirmed.

I am delighted to be signed to Wild Pressed Books for this novel. They are a small independent press which publishes literary fiction with a strong sense of place and the commissioning editor and I have a shared sense of how to tweak and edit the next draft to get it just right for publication. Read more on the publisher’s website.

Engraving of 12 figures of fetuses in uteruses Credit: Wellcome Library, London.

To whet your appetite, the publishers and I have produced a pamphlet, A Handy Guide to Pregnancy and Birth for the Seventeenth-Century Woman which is available on Kindle for £1.49 here or in print from Wild Pressed Books, for just £3 including P and P here.

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