The Journal of Dora Damage by Belinda Starling
Occasionally, when you read something really special, it makes it harder to start the next book, Dora Damage has that power. She is one of the most beguiling and charming heroines I have discovered in years, her wit and resourcefulness in the very male world of book binding in 1859 London, will have you on her side from the first page.
By the time Dora discovers that her husband Peter has arthritis in his hands, it is too late — their book-binding business is in huge debt and the family is on the brink of entering the poorhouse. But Dora is stronger than that. She resolves to train herself in the art of bookbinding and take on her husband’s business, protecting her beloved daughter at any price. In doing so, she unwittingly enters the dark underbelly of the bookbinding business and becomes irrevocably entangled in a world of dubious publishing, money, sex, deceit and the law.