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A marriage of dynasty: that is what is expected of Mary Sidney. A marriage to Sir Henry Herbert, Earl of Pembroke, to be precise. But Mary’s sharp mind longs to work on her writing and translation projects, ideally alongside her brilliant brother Philip, and perhaps learn more of the alchemical arts at the elbow of the dazzling Walter Raleigh.
Rose Commin, a young country girl with a surprising talent for drawing, is desperate to shrug off the slurs of witchcraft which have tarnished life at home. The opportunity to work at Wilton House, the Herberts’ Wiltshire home, is her chance. Defying the conventions of their time, these two women, mistress and maid, will find themselves facing the triumphs, revelations and struggles that lie ahead by leaning on each other.