About the book…
The harshness of 19th century life for women, seen through the eyes of a young bride. Margery Blake is nothing but a pawn in family affairs, and her marriage is seen as a good match. Margery has no power, or control over her life, and endures her husband’s rights to her body, in order to produce an heir. Margery soon realises ‘husband’ is merely another title for owner, beater, brute, bully, evil, but she finds friendships in the unlikeliest of places.
Purchase the book: Amazon UK
I’d like to thank both Sue from All Words Matter and author P.J. Roscoe for sending me a copy of Diary of Margery Blake to read and review.
As the title states, the novel is a diary written by eighteen-year-old Margery Blake, who is forced to marry army captain, John. The entries are usually written weekly with descriptions on her day-to-day life and feelings. The majority of her life is spent between 1800 and 1900, which leads me to believe (history lesson here) it’s the Victorian era. I always said I’d love to live in the Victorian world, but only if I had money, otherwise I think it would be a difficult life for me. Given that there naturally was a divide between the rich and the poor, Margery definitely doesn’t treat her staff or servants any differently; they are all classed as equals. I admired Margery for being passionate about this because I imagine this wouldn’t have been seen as common practice for anyone around that time. That’s one thing that you can definitely say about her, she’s confident, passionate and strong – a great woman for others to aspire to.
A major topic that is highlighted within the novel is the stigma of being a woman and how they were treated by men and others alike. I’m so incredibly grateful for living in the modern day because no way would I like to be treated like muck – I can’t even think of a better word for it. Granted, we do have a long way to go and women are still treated lower than men – gender equality is on the up! Margery does her best to be independent and chooses not to listen to John’s parents or even her own. They seem to have strong values and ways in which they wish Margery to behave, but she is having none of it. As previously mentioned, she’s a great woman!
I won’t spoil too much for you (because that’s never fun), but let’s just say Margery doesn’t have it easy and experiences some very sad situations. John does not appear to be a very nice man and expects everyone to abide by his actions and/or words.
I’ve recently learnt that this genre and topic isn’t the usual for P.J. Roscoe, but you would not expect this at all. The novel was written perfectly. I found myself reading quickly because the narrative ran smoothly and I felt like I was being told a story by Margery herself.
About the author…
I’m a Mother, Wife, daughter, sister, Author, counselor, Holistic therapist, movement therapy facilitator and drumming therapist, not necessarily in that order, but I work hard at all of them!! I’m the award-winning author of three books – ‘Echoes’, ‘Freya’s Child’ and ‘Adventures of Faerie folk’, with at least three more in various stages of completion and another two books in my head bursting to get out! I also have three short stories published in three anthologies, plus I am finishing more faerie stories. I live in North Wales, surrounded by Celtic magic and yes, I believe in faeries!