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A Factory of Cunning

by Philippa Stockley

Written in the form of journal entries and letters the reader soon becomes immersed in the seedier side of 18th century London and the complex and immoral plans of a manipulative woman who goes by the name of Mrs Fox. This is a beautifully written, darkly humorous novel full of intrigue and seduction.

Extract

For supper there was a bottle of claret apiece and what food she had found - not unreasonable bread, although we were predisposed to find it heavy, a poussin, cold meats and potted shrimp. We ate heartily and retired at once; Victoire to the small room where, from the imprecations against our slatternly landlady and Flea-Bitten Scabbed Harpies, I understood that she slept badly on the floor, beneath her coat.

Parallels

Cousin Bette by Honore de Balzac
Dangerous Liaisons - the film
 

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