Amazon Reviews for The Apothecary’s Daughter

January 4, 2012 6:48 pm by
5.0 out of 5 stars I loved this book!, 5 Mar 2012
By
This review is from: The Apothecary’s Daughter (Paperback)

Oh how I loved this book!

In fact I voted it my favourite book for January. I don’t read a lot of historical novels, but this one conjured up such a vision rich in detail and texture that I found I couldn’t put it down. I honestly felt like I had stepped into the 1600’s. To be honest, that is one era of history that has always fascinated me – the plague and the Great Fire of London. I was pleased that the author really brought it to life for me with her vivid descriptions. I was amazed to discover that Islington used to be thought of as countryside!

I knew that I would love this book when I first saw the cover for it nearly a year ago. The cover is so beautiful, it reminded me of one of those old fashioned sweets shops you used to be able to go to where you could buy a quarter of your favourite sweets.

Susannah was an amazing character. She never let the ill fate that followed her keep her down for long. She was a strong woman with great intelligence who was often degraded just for being a woman. At the beginning of the story we find her situation similar to Cinderella’s. Her weak willed father has fallen in lust with a much younger woman, Arabella, whose only objective was to find a suitable new home for her children with enough income to keep her in the dresses she desires. You couldn’t blame Arabella for being the way she was, as during that era a woman needed a man to survive; as the sexist nature of society wouldn’t allow women to have a carreer of their own.

Susannah is s desperate to do her best for everyone. Her relationship with Henry is a difficult one and I felt sorry for the way she was treated. However Dr William Ambrose, who appears as austere and moody, is definitely a character I enjoyed!

This book definitely shows a woman’s quest for independence. Susannah is desperate to stand side by side with the men in society – she has the same apothecary skills which they have gained and can see no reason for equality.

In some ways, this book reminded me of L.M. Montgomery’s Anne of Green Gables. I think it was the warmth I felt from the book, and the love story which sits at the heart of it. Charlotte’s descriptive writing also reminded me of the way Sally Gardner writes; the way she paints a picture with words.

I am extremely excited by Charlotte’s writing and I long for more books very quickly.

 
5.0 out of 5 stars Intriguing bodice ripper, 7 Mar 2012
By
gayespencerThis review is from: The Apothecary’s Daughter (Paperback)
After reading a couple of worthy, long books I was longing for something pacy that I couldn’t put down and this elegant story proved to be just the job.
I enjoyed the historical notes, the details, but soon got lost in the story desperately wishing the heroine well. A good read – try it!
5.0 out of 5 stars Historical romantic fiction at its very best!, 6 Aug 2011
By
Bee42This review is from: The Apothecary’s Daughter (Hardcover)

One of the best historical fictions I’ve read in a long time – this reminded me very much of Tracey Chevalier. The Apothecary’s Daughter is evocative, sensual and very well researched. I couldn’t put it down! The central character – Susannah – is well-drawn and very easy to empathise with. Other favourite characters include Arabella, the wicked step-mother, and the roguish Henry.
Set against the backdrop of the plague and great fire of London, the author reconstructs this turbulent time in London’s history with skill and precision, coupled with wonderful writing.
I can recommend this very highly and will wait with eager anticipation for Charlotte Betts’ next novel!

5.0 out of 5 stars Historical total immersion!, 2 Aug 2011
By
overwallopThis review is from: The Apothecary’s Daughter (Hardcover)

This is a great story of romance and finding your true path in life, set in a such a vivid historical setting that all the sights, sounds and smells of the seventeenth century come alive… Characters to really get involved with, and grow to love (or hate!) and a story that will pull you in and keep you interested to the last page. All in all a fantastic debut; highly recommended.

5.0 out of 5 stars A worthy winner, 27 Aug 2011
By
Jud66This review is from: The Apothecary’s Daughter (Hardcover)

Echoing much of what’s been said by other reviewers, I thoroughly enjoyed reading this and can see why (as well as being an RNA winner) it scooped the YouWriteOn.com ‘Adult Fiction Overall Winner’ award last year; it grabs you right from the start, elegantly wrapping you in both the physical world of our heroine, Susannah, with all the vivid colours and smells that you might wish for from a 17th Century apothecary’s shop, but also the emotional one too, as pretty much everything Susannah considers normal gets turned upside down… and all this set against the amazing backdrop of plague and ultimately fire. Great stuff!

Loved this book – couldn’t put it down, 1 Sep 2011

By
Mouse (Uk) This review is from: The Apothecary’s Daughter (Hardcover)

Loved this book, a very difficult book to put down! it is an easy read but keeps you interested.
Beautifully written – I look forward to the next book….

5.0 out of 5 stars Deservedly an award winner, 2 Sep 2011

By
LandfastThis review is from: The Apothecary’s Daughter (Hardcover)

Not just a novel, but a book that has a well researched history of London in the 1600’s. That combined with the absorbing characters any one of whom you can become immersed in makes it an amazing first book. Rightly it didn’t take long for it to be discovered and rewarded with the RNA Award. The structure of the book is faultless. What is next?

5.0 out of 5 stars Reading into the small hours, 2 Sep 2011

By
kittyphezThis review is from: The Apothecary’s Daughter (Hardcover)

A fantastic first novel which I just couldn’t put down – I finished it at 2a.m! Marvelous descriptions of the time, the place and the people make everything easy to visualise. I could almost smell the Apothacary’s shop with it’s herbs and spices and the other, worse, smells of 17th century London. The characters are so well rounded, even the minor ones. As I followed them through fire, plague, love, hate,friendship, sickness and death I cared about them. What more could you ask from a novel? I look forward to her next publication.

5.0 out of 5 stars An enchanting read, 11 Sep 2011
By
Isabel MacGreedyThis review is from: The Apothecary’s Daughter (Hardcover)

The Apothecary’s Daughter is filled with the sights and smells of the time and wonderful historical nuances – so well researched. It is also fascinating to learn the different plants and herbs that we used to use to cure ourselves. As others have commented, the characters are extremely well rounded and I adore Susannah! I look forward to every spare moment I get to read this wonderful novel.

5.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable and Absorbing, 14 Aug 2011
By
Martha IversThis review is from: The Apothecary’s Daughter (Hardcover)

A great debut novel.i really rooted for the heroine and enjoyed the details in the book.It is well paced and very satisfying.
I look forward to the next novel by Charlotte Betts called “The Painter’s Apprentice”.

5.0 out of 5 stars This was a fantastic read and I genuinely couldn’t put it down!, 17 Aug 2011
By
P R Begy– This review is from: The Apothecary’s Daughter (Hardcover)

I thoroughly enjoyed this book, from start to finish it made me want to keep reading, much to the upset of my husband who I ignored for three days!
With the author’s style of writing I was dragged back to 17th Century London, each page conjuring up a wonderful mix of sights sounds and smells. You can feel the emotion coursing through the pages as the story unfolds.
Susannah and the rest of the characters including William and peg, can’t help but engage you.
I love reading a book by a first time author. There is nothing quite like the thrill that you have found the `next big thing’ and with Charlotte Betts I am fairly certain that I have.

5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful debut novel, 8 Aug 2011
By
John Hoggard “Trekkie geek” This review is from: The Apothecary’s Daughter (Hardcover)

It might seem odd that a “trekkie geek” is reviewing a Historical novel, but it turns out good writing is good writing and a good story is a good story irrespective of genre!
This is a beautifully written novel, with 17th Century London so well constructed that it isn’t just a backdrop against which the players play, but an integral part of the story.
I found myself caught up in the injustices heaped upon the lead character, enraged by the unfairness of it all. I was was delighted by the conclusion which feels very “right” without feeling contrived.
This an excellent début novel from Charlotte Betts and I expect to see many more great things from her in the future.

5.0 out of 5 stars Superb reading, 11 Nov 2011
By
Bookworm (Europe) – This review is from: The Apothecary’s Daughter (Hardcover)

I enjoy reading historical novels (one can learn so much while enjoying a bit of fantasy at the same time), and this is as good as it gets.
Absolutely loved the story, and I am looking forward to Ms Betts’ next novel.

5.0 out of 5 stars A truly remarkable feat, 27 Aug 2011
By
Medhurst This review is from: The Apothecary’s Daughter (Hardcover)

To write about something so outside our experience as the great Plague of London and to succeed in capturing its horror and menace is a truly remarkable feat. For that is the background against which this story, of a woman who seeks recognition of her professional skills in a male dominated world, is set. Full of colourful characters and intriguing subplots and very well researched, this is an excellent debut novel by Charlotte Betts.

5.0 out of 5 stars Enchanting, 4 Jan 2012

This is a lovely debut novel from Ms Betts, crammed with historical depth and believable characters. Susannah is an intelligent woman determined to break away from the restraints of society, but unable to challenge the misguided men in her life. For lovers of historical detail in their fiction, this is a must read. My mum loved it too.

5.0 out of 5 stars Please – more NOW!, 21 Sep 2011
By
Archie Monk This review is from: The Apothecary’s Daughter (Hardcover)

Wow! Please tell me this isn’t the only book this author has written.
My wife passed The Apothecary’s Daughter to me after she had read it. I didn’t expect to enjoy it. Terms like ‘new writer’ and ‘romantic novelist’ fired all my misguided millsandboonesque preconceptions.
Well Reader, I was wrong.
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. Couldn’t put it down. And there’s the problem. Because I wanted to keep turning the pages, but I didn’t want it to finish. Its all very well finding a new writer that you really enjoy, but what you really want is to find that he/she has written another ten, fifteen, twenty books. Already written, published and available in paperback, just waiting to be read.
I have no doubt that Charlotte Betts will one day have her name on those little shelf-edge labels that bookshops use to identify their collections of popular writers. But that’s no good to me – I’m getting on a bit. I want to read more NOW!

5.0 out of 5 stars Historical romantic fiction at its very best!, 6 Aug 2011
By
Bee42 – This review is from: The Apothecary’s Daughter (Hardcover)

One of the best historical fictions I’ve read in a long time – this reminded me very much of Tracey Chevalier. The Apothecary’s Daughter is evocative, sensual and very well researched. I couldn’t put it down! The central character – Susannah – is well-drawn and very easy to empathise with. Other favourite characters include Arabella, the wicked step-mother, and the roguish Henry.
Set against the backdrop of the plague and great fire of London, the author reconstructs this turbulent time in London’s history with skill and precision, coupled with wonderful writing.
I can recommend this very highly and will wait with eager anticipation for Charlotte Betts’ next novel!

5.0 out of 5 stars The Apothecray’s daughter, 11 Oct 2011
By
wellesleyThis review is from: The Apothecary’s Daughter (Hardcover)

A great read , once started difficult to put down, I wanted to carry on to the end.
A reallt interesting story ,extremely well researched so I learnt a lot about the history and life of Londoners in the 1660’s. The story is well written with some lovely discriptions which made you feel realy involved with the characters. I throughly recommend it and am looking forward to her next book.

5.0 out of 5 stars An incredible debut which will continue to win awards, 2 Aug 2011
By
giggagiggoooThis review is from: The Apothecary’s Daughter (Hardcover)

I had heard about this through the 2011 RNA Award which she won, and was keen to see if the book lived up to the hype. Glad to say it surpassed my high expectations.
Very impressive writing style, and her ability to create atmosphere and character empathy is most endearing.
An excellent book, incredible story and fantastic style.
Looking forward to more from Charlotte Betts.

5.0 out of 5 stars Intriguing Historical Novel, 8 Oct 2011
By
Harry This review is from: The Apothecary’s Daughter (Hardcover)

I don’t usually read historical novels but I was very quickly captured by the authenticity of the vivid descriptions and transported back to the stinking, plague-ridden London of the seventeenth century. This novel is clearly well researched. An array of lively characters jump off the page and Susannah, the main character, was loveable and feisty. I was swept along with the trials and tribulations of her life. A promising new writer and I can’t wait for the sequel.

5.0 out of 5 stars An amazing first novel, 26 Aug 2011
By
PheasantThis review is from: The Apothecary’s Daughter (Hardcover)

This is an amazing first novel, which draws you without obvious effort into a different world and a different time. I have rarely read a book that conveys so effectively a sense of what it must have been like to live in 17th Century London, with the fear of plague and the colourful sights and sounds of that fascinating city. Added to this, Susannah is easy to identify with and her story holds your interest from beginning to end. Warning: before picking up this book, you should realise that you may find it impossible to put down!

5.0 out of 5 stars really enjoyable read, 13 Nov 2011
By
emaThis review is from: The Apothecary’s Daughter (Hardcover)

I picked up this book in my local library, after reading the first few pages i decided to take it. I was initialy drawn to it because i work in a pharmacy and I thought i would enjoy reading about life working for an old style apothacary.
I finished the book in two days, i coudnt put it down! Im not sure why the book was so gripping but it was, I found it so easy to read and wanted to find out what was going to happen to the main character and her family.
Although i did predict a lot of the plot before it unfolded I found it entertaining and hard to leave the story. Im really looking forward to the next book after reading a sneak preview of it at the end of this one.
If you want a nice easy read and smething that will draw you into the lives of its characters give this a go.

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