I am delighted to welcome Samantha Larsen to
Escape With Dollycas today!
Eighteenth Century Wife-Auctions
by Samantha Larsen
‘til auction do you part.
Not all stories have a fairy-tale fairytale ending. Divorce in eighteenth-century England was rare, expensive, and obtained only through the Church of England or an act of parliament. It was difficult for a married woman of the aristocracy to obtain one. Of the ninety divorces granted by parliament before 1857, only four were granted to women. It was unrealistic for someone of the lower classes to receive a divorce. They did not have the connections or money to dissolve and unhappy union; or to find love again that could be sanctioned by both the church and the law.
I first read about a “wife-auction” in Thomas Hardy’s The Mayor of Casterbridge. Hardy explains that the sold wife, “was by no means the first or last peasant woman who had religiously adhered to her purchaser.” Daniel Pool notes that between 1750–1850, “there were some 380 of these do-it-yourself divorces effected in rural England.” Records note that the wife was led to the auction with a rope around her neck, like an animal. The highest bidder became her new “husband.”
In Once Upon a Murder, a female character has been sold at a “wife-auction” to a much kinder man. I can only hope that some of the 380 wives that were auctioned off, found a better situation with their second husband.
References: Pool, Daniel. What Jane Austen Ate and Charles Dickens Knew. New York: Touchstone, 1994.
Thank you, Samantha, for visiting today.
Keep reading for information about Samantha’s new book, Once Upon A Murder.
About Once Upon A Murder
Once Upon a Murder (A Lady Librarian Mystery) by Samantha Larsen
Publication Date: February 20, 2024
Publisher: Crooked Lane Books
Genre: Cozy Mystery
Hardcover : 304 pages
ISBN-10 : 1639106219
ISBN-13 : 978-1639106219
Digital ASIN : B0C4J6WW7B
Miss Tiffany Woodall must sleuth the slaying of a footman to clear her beloved’s name in the second Lady Librarian mystery, in the vein of Deanna Raybourn and perfect for fans of Bridgerton.
1784 England. Officially hired as the librarian for the Duchess of Beaufort, Miss Tiffany Woodall is through with masquerades and murders for good. That is, until she stumbles upon the frozen dead body of former footman Mr. Bernard Coram. The speed with which her peaceful new life is upended is one for the record books: the justice of the peace immediately declares her the primary suspect in the murder.
As Tiffany hunts for the truth to clear her name, she learns that Bernard got into a fight over a woman at the local pub the night of his death–but he was also overheard blackmailing Samir. The justice of the peace arrests Samir, and Tiffany realizes that her life may have more in common with a tragic play than a light-hearted romance.
With her love locked up in jail and her own reputation on the line, Tiffany must attempt to solve the murder before the book closes on her or Samir’s life.
Great Escapes Praise for Once Upon a Murder (A Lady Librarian Mystery)
by Samantha Larsen
I enjoyed the first Lady Librarian Mystery and I loved this second installment even more. ONCE UPON A MURDER is a gripping historical novel with an intriguing mystery.
~Cozy Up With Kathy
Take one unique amateur sleuth, a complicated bookseller, an adorable little boy, a powerful Duchess, a villainous victim, and a town full of suspects. Mix them into the Georgian era of British history and raise the personal stakes, and you’ve got an entertaining mystery that is more complex than it first appears.
~Reading Is My Superpower
To get the most enjoyment out of this novel, be sure to read A Novel Disguise first! I highly recommend Once Upon a Murder for its well-written characters, carefully plotted mystery, descriptive scenes, and for the romance.
~Christy’s Cozy Corners
Once Upon A Murder is a gripping chase with interesting developments, characters, and a wonderfully-paced murder plot replete with a myriad of possible suspects to keep you guessing.
I was happy to get my hands on book two of Samantha Larsen’s Lady Librarian Mystery, Once Upon a Murder because book one, A Novel Disguise was such a great read! And if a mystery features any type of librarian or book lover, it always goes to the top of my TBR.
~SARAH CAN’T STOP READING
About Samantha Larsen
Samantha Larsen met her husband in a turkey sandwich line. They live in Salt Lake City, Utah, where she spends most of her time reading, eating popcorn, having tea parties, and chasing her four kids. She has degrees from Brigham Young University, the University of North Texas, and the University of Reading (UK). She also writes historical romances under Samantha Hastings. Learn more at www.SamanthaHastings.com
TOUR PARTICIPANTS – Please Visit All The Stops.
February 15 – Mystery, Thrillers, and Suspense – CHARACTER GUEST POST
February 15 – The Mystery of Writing – AUTHOR GUEST POST
February 16 – Cozy Up With Kathy – REVIEW
February 17 – Reading Is My SuperPower – REVIEW
February 17 – MJB Reviewers – SPOTLIGHT
February 18 – Maureen’s Musings – SPOTLIGHT
February 19 – FUONLYKNEW – SPOTLIGHT WITH EXCERPT
February 20 – Socrates Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
February 20 – Christy’s Cozy Corners – REVIEW
February 21 – Novels Alive – REVIEW
February 22 – Sarah Can’t Stop Reading Books – REVIEW
February 22 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
February 23 – #BRVL Book Review Virginia Lee – SPOTLIGHT
February 24 – Baroness Book Trove – SPOTLIGHT WITH EXCERPT
February 24 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – AUTHOR INTERVIEW\
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February 27 – Ascroft, eh? – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
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