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Tuesday, October 3, 2017

With Love for Bookouture - The Wardrobe Mistress by Natalie Meg Evans - Book Review & Giveaway

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Review by Suze

Vanessa is a war widow and she's a brave woman who played her part for her country in the Second World War. After the war she has to find a job and the theater world, where she has roots, greatly appeals to her. She finds a position as wardrobe mistress at The Farren Theatre in London. Former captain Alistair has inherited the place and is trying to make it successful again. He and Vanessa know each other, but their connection isn't an easy one.

Vanessa is trying to find beautiful fabrics for dresses and costumes when everything is in short supply. She has to prove herself, as she's a beginner without much experience. She has allies in the theater, but she also has enemies. There's something about her past she doesn't entirely understand, will she ever find out the truth? Meanwhile Vanessa has to fight her feelings for Alistair, the man who's married to her dear friend. Will she be able to keep their relationship professional while she feels so much love for the man she isn't ever supposed to be with?

The Wardrobe Mistress is a fantastic story about a strong and talented woman. Vanessa is tough, she can handle everything that comes her way and she's incredibly smart. I immediately liked her. She has to be resilient and clever, but she never loses her honesty and kindness. I loved that about her personality. Alistair can be reserved or loving, depending on his mood and the circumstances of the moment, and it was interesting to see how he reacts in every difficult situation he ends up in. They're numerous, but he always keeps going and I liked his spirit and determination. The relationship he has with Vanessa is wonderfully complicated. I couldn't wait to find out where that would lead and couldn't turn the pages quickly enough to discover how things would end for them.

The Wardrobe Mistress is a book about the marvelous world of the theater. It's something that spellbound to me from the start and I loved Natalie Meg Evans's detailed descriptions of the stage, the costumes and the rehearsals, it felt like I could take a look behind the scenes. She combines this magical setting with fabulous gripping secrets and they kept me on the edge of my seat. The Wardrobe Mistress is a captivating, enchanting, entertaining and interesting read. I absolutely loved this terrific story.


If you love reading historical fiction combined with fascinating secrets you will definitely like The Wardrobe Mistress.

About Natalie Meg Evans

Natalie Meg Evans has been an art student, actor, PR copywriter, book-keeper and bar tender. She is author of three published novels which take as their starting point the turmoil of the late 1930s and World War Two, and focus on the personal struggles of individuals caught up in these times.

Always an avid reader of history – for her sixth birthday she got a toy Arthurian castle with plastic knights – Natalie views historical fiction as the perfect theatre for the imagination. All her novels meld reality with human passions, and delve behind the scenes of a prestige industry: high fashion, millinery, wine making. Rich arenas for love and conflict!
Brought up in the UK, and presently living in rural Suffolk where she writes full time, Natalie was born in Zimbabwe, then Southern Rhodesia, to a mechanic father and a teacher mother. Her mother’s love of all things French made a deep impression, as did a spell in Paris when she was fourteen. Her first two books are set in that city and A Gown of Thorns is set in Southwest France. For The Wardrobe Mistress (out 2017), a story of love and betrayal in post-war theatre, she returns to London where she lived during the 1980s.

Natalie has a son, a music producer, and two elderly Labradors. She lives in a small, sociable village where, occasionally, time seems to stand still. Time off is spent walking the lanes, watching the wildlife and changing seasons, singing in local churches and cooking. She is currently re-learning the guitar.
Natalie Meg Evans is a USA Today bestseller and Romance Writers of America RITA® nominee. She has won the Festival of Romance’s Historical Novel Award, the Harry Bowling Prize, placed third for the RWA’s Golden Pen award, and has been nominated for the coveted Daphne du Maurier award. The Dress Thief won the LoveStories Readers’ award for the best historical, and the Greek Public Book award for the best foreign novel. She was also a finalist for a Romance Writers of America Golden Heart®.

A novel from Natalie Meg Evans is an epic journey, built around a strong female character locked in a struggle for independence and to realise her creative dreams. Where do these stories come from?
Perhaps from a pivotal event just days after her sixth birthday when her dad died in a car accident. It not only robbed Natalie of a beloved friend but engulfed her family. Her mother, traumatised by shock, nevertheless became the rock-like personality that inspires the characters of Natalie’s heroines. Financial trauma and schoolyard bullying dominated Natalie’s childhood, and as children do, she found security in reading and in the recesses of her imagination. She wrote her first book in the aftermath of her dad’s passing, tellingly about a robin who left his wife and fledglings in the nest to find food and never returned. It still makes her sister cry! Her adult stories are far more upbeat (and multi-layered!) but nevertheless, deal with the realities of life and with injustice.

Author links



One very lucky reader of With Love for Books will receive a digital copy of The Wardrobe Mistress and a beautiful book cover necklace.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The winner will be notified by email and has 3 days to respond. All of our giveaways are international.


  1. What an interesting book! The world of the theater sounds fascinating. Thanks for sharing.

  2. Love reading historical fiction. The Wardrobe Mistress sounds like a must-read.

  3. I love a good historical book. Sounds like an amazing book.

  4. this book looks right up my alley!

  5. I really lie the premise of this... it sounds great!
    Kelly Braun

  6. Looks a great read

  7. I love a good historical fiction novel.

  8. Sounds so good!


  9. Sounds like a really good story. Looking forward to reading it

  10. Great premise for a book! My grandmother grew up in this era (although on the other side of the pond); I'd love to read more about it, and the theater setting sounds exciting. ♥

  11. Looking forward to reading your book - looks good!

  12. The book sounds amazing and i look foward to reading it ๐Ÿ˜€๐Ÿ‘

  13. Sounds like a good book.Thank you for giveaway

  14. OOO! Yet another wonderful historical read!