Black Lily

Black Lily

A Novel

Born worlds apart, Lily and Zenobia unite and fight to survive in murderous 17th century London, in a hard-edged, glittering novel

In late seventeenth century London two women, one white, one black, stake everything to prevent a manipulative mogul destroying them. Zenobia, born in poverty, grasps that her only hope of controlling her own life is to capitalise on her looks; Lily, brought to London on a sugar and slave ship as a ‘toy’, educated alongside her mistress but used by her master, lives as a kept woman.

As their story weaves and folds through a murky and merciless London, both find themselves pitted against a ruthless man the world knows as John Crace. London's rich but festering possibilities as a rapidly-changing multinational city are breathtakingly painted, and pungent milieux ranging from plague pits to prisons to pastry kitchens – and Pickled Herring Stairs - are vividly brought to life.

Born worlds apart, Lily and Zenobia unite and fight to survive in murderous 17th century London, in a hard-edged, glittering novel

Philippa Stockley read English at Oxford and art-historical clothing history at the Courtauld Institute of Art, London. She produced her first illustrated novel at six and her first stage design at ten. She is the author of The Edge of Pleasure (Little, Brown, Harcourt Brace) and of A Factory of Cunning, an epistolary sequel to Les Liaisons Dangereuses (Little, Brown; Harcourt Brace). A professional painter and designer as well as a novelist, freelance editor and journalist, Philippa Stockley lives in Whitechapel, London.  

"Stockley vividly conveys the filth and frivolity of the city and is particularly good on food and fashion. But we're not spared the gruesome underbelly of the city. Black Lily would clearly make a terrific TV series. Stockley's deftly plotted novel has a sting in the tale too. You have to go back to the first chapter to see how beautifully she's set the whole thing up."

Evening Standard Liz Hoggard

"As rich and dark as the deadly sweetmeats prepared at the story's end....Philippa Stockley has poured her artistry and knowledge into her latest novel....A deliciously satisfying read, and, like the sweetmeats, one to be gobbled up greedily."

Country Life

"A fascinating and debauched romp, moving with dream-like speed through an incredibly vivid seventeenth-century London. Surely the best-written bodice ripper ever published."

Andrew Martin

"An engrossing, many-layered, richly woven tale of intrigue and skulduggery."

Wendy Moore
Imprint
The Pimpernel Press Ltd
Publisher
The Pimpernel Press Ltd
Language
English
Product Format
Paperback
Dimensions
198 x 129
Publication Date
6 Sep 2018
Number of Pages
256
ISBN
9781910258095
Product Format
Kindle
Publication Date
6 Sep 2018
ISBN
9781910258385