It is rare that I am captivated from the very first page, but I was. It is also rare that I am this invested in a story, but I was. With a fast paced life filled with lots of little boys, so many commitments, and a list of things I want or should do that stretches well beyond what is humanly possible I tend to select books that are quick totread oror a dare I say short. I asked around with those on the review team before agreeing to read this story. I am so grateful they had rave reviews about Allison Pittman and will always be grateful they encouraged me to pick up this book.
Pittman beautifully developed not one but two main characters in this novel. Cousins in the late 1700’s in France who are more like sisters that bicker, fight, love and hurt. Their crushes on the same men that grow in wildly different ways were masterfully developed and so enthralling to read about. I loved the way Pittman dipped in and out of each girl’s story. These tandem story lines kept me riveted. I also loved the different perspective on Marie Antoinette. Usually portrayed as a heinous queen she is humanized and motherly which is a different and unique perspective. The Women’s March on Versailles (an actual historic event) was brutal to read about, but that is a part of historical fiction that I appreciate most. Renee’s utmost devotion to the queen, was both bizarre and riveting. I am so grateful for a fiction story that leaves me wanting to learn more about a real historical event. And that leads me to read classics like A Tale of Two Cities. I have no desire to ruin the story for you, but every hope my pure enthusiasm for the author and this story in particular will lead you to grab a copy.
Don’t miss the guest post from Pittman herself down below, but I will tell you this she has accomplished what she set out to do by ” ‘finishing’ other author’s works, fleshing out the stories of neglected characters.” The stories she chose to extend and explore took neglected characters and gave them the attention they deserve, creating beautiful tales of their lives and stories.
The good news for me is that she has a “Sister Wife” duo and so many more that I can now add to my “to read” list! Again so many thanks to Celebrate Lit Bloggers for exposing me to yet another author who I now will follow with baited breath, and for a copy of the book. All these thoughts are honest and my own, and I hope they leave you wanting to READ, more info and a giveaway of the book is below!
About the Book
Title: The Seamstress
Author: Allison Pittman
Genre: Historical Fiction
Release date: February 5, 2019
A beautifully crafted story breathes life into the cameo character from the classic novel A Tale of Two Cities.
It is the best of times . . .
On a tranquil farm nestled in the French countryside, two orphaned cousins—Renée and Laurette—have been raised under the caring guardianship of young Émile Gagnon, the last of a once-prosperous family. No longer starving girls, Laurette and Renée now spend days tending Gagnon’s sheep, and nights in their cozy loft, whispering secrets and dreams in this time of waning innocence and peace.
It is the worst of times . . .
Paris groans with a restlessness that can no longer be contained within its city streets. Hunger and hatred fuel her people. Violence seeps into the ornate halls of Versailles. Even Gagnon’s table in the quiet village of Mouton Blanc bears witness to the rumbles of rebellion, where Marcel Moreau embodies its voice and heart.
It is the story that has never been told.
In one night, the best and worst of fate collide. A chance encounter with a fashionable woman will bring Renée’s sewing skills to light and secure a place in the court of Queen Marie Antoinette. An act of reckless passion will throw Laurette into the arms of the increasingly militant Marcel. And Gagnon, steadfast in his faith in God and country, can only watch as those he loves march straight into the heart of the revolution.
Click here to purchase your copy!
About the Author
Allison Pittman is the author of more than a dozen critically acclaimed novels and a three-time Christy finalist—twice for her Sister Wife series and once for All for a Story from her take on the Roaring Twenties. She lives in San Antonio, Texas, blissfully sharing an empty nest with her husband, Mike. Connect with her on Facebook (Allison Pittman Author), Twitter (@allisonkpittman) or her website, allisonkpittman.com.
Guest Post from Allison
My dream of being an author began by “finishing” other author’s works, fleshing out the stories of neglected characters. When I read the final books in the Little House series, I was far more interested in Cap Garland than I was in Almonzo Wilder, and I imagined all kinds of stories in which he was the hero.
This, The Seamstress, is one of those stories that came to me in a single burst of thought. I was teaching my sophomore English class, discussing through the final scenes in A Tale of Two Cities, when the little seamstress in those final pages reached out to me. She is a nameless character, seemingly more symbolic than anything. Dickens, however, gives her an entire backstory in a single phrase: I have a cousin who lives in the country. How will she ever know what became of me? I remember pausing right then and there in front of my students and saying, “Now, there’s the story I want to write.”
Now, years later, I have.
While every word of every Charles Dickens novel is a master class in writing, what he gave to me for The Seamstress is the kind of stuff that brings life and breath to fiction. I have to convey the fact that any character on my pages—no matter how much story space he or she is allotted—has a life between them. Every man was once a child; every woman a vulnerable young girl.
So, Dickens gave me the bones of the story. A seamstress. A cousin in the country. A country ripped apart; family torn from family. I did my very best to put flesh on those bones, but no writer can ever bring the life and breath. Only a reader can do that.
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All-of-a-kind Mom, February 12
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Stories By Gina, February 13
Stephanie’s Life of Determination, February 13
The Christian Fiction Girl, February 13
Inspired by fiction, February 14
Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, February 14
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Through the Fire Blogs, February 15
Seasonsofopportunities, February 15
Inspiration Clothesline, February 15
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Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, February 21
Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, February 22
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Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, February 22
To celebrate her tour, Allison is giving away a grand prize of a $25 Amazon gift card, a hardcover copy of The Seamstress, and this copy of A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter. https://promosimple.com/ps/db0e/the-seamstress-celebration-tour-giveaway