One long, hot summer in the 1880s Bram Stoker escaped from the pressures of theatre life in London to the seaside town of Whitby. These months are unaccounted for, and around them Ann Victoria Roberts has woven a mysterious and enthralling novel.
It is during a violent storm on the coast of Whitby that Mr. Stoker meets Damaris, a local 19 year old girl who has lost both her parents. In spite of the age difference and Mr. Stoker's wife, the two become entangled in a passionate affair that dramatically alters the course of both their lives. Throughout their affair, Mr. Stoker is introduced to the wild sea, the wrecks, and local legends of Whitby - many of whom make their way into Dracula. Damaris, in turn, learns about passion, love, and betrayal.
Roberts has seamlessly combined fact and fiction to bring us an irresistible novel that is both love story and literary history.
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Ann Victoria Roberts made her fictional debut with Louisa Elliott, which was translated into several languages and followed by Morning's Gate. She divides her time between her home in York and a cottage in Whitby, England.From Publishers Weekly:
A passionate affair between Damaris Sterne, an orphaned fishergirl living in the English seaside village of Whitby, and Bram Stoker, future author of Dracula, married and 20 years her senior, is the focus of Roberts's (Louisa Elliott) atmospheric, well-researched historical romance. The story opens with a chance reunion of the couple two decades after their affair. The once impoverished young girl, now named Marie Lindsey, has become successful in the male-dominated world of shipping and is a wealthy widow; Stoker, longtime business manager to the era's eminent Shakespearean actor, is old and frailDhis fame as a novelist won't come until much later. He and "Damsy" met during a lethal gale that inspired the storm in Dracula. She lived with her cousin Bella, and the girls hawked fish; enterprising and feisty, Damsy also posed for photographs sold as picture-cards to tourists. The cousins' lives diverged when Bella, victimized by incest, was driven to prostitution, whereas Damsy matured during her passionate liaison with Stoker, to whom she confided local legends. Subsequently, she survived a botched abortion, dropped "old-fashioned" Damaris for a more fashionable name and obtained a job as companion to the elderly matron of a shipping family, acquiring a knowledge of trade that led to marriage, a career and good fortuneDalthough she did not escape treachery and sorrow along the way. As a rags-to-riches heroine, her mindset and self-assurance are ahead of their time, but this gothic romance offers the dramatic thrills and titillating sex common to the genre and adds the cachet of imagining the source of Stoker's classic. It's a cut well above similar novels. (Jan. 19)
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Book Description Arrow Books, 2000. Paperback. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # M0099281481