Monday, April 29, 2013

Book Givaway: How to Create the Perfect Wife

I hope you are feeling lucky because it is time for a long-awaited book giveaway, and what a fabulous giveaway it is!

Wendy Moore, author of The Knife Man, and one of my personal recommended reads, Wedlock, the biography of Mary Eleanor Bowes has just finished her newest book, How to Create the Perfect Wife:
This is the story of how Thomas Day, a young man of means, decided he could never marry a woman with brains, spirit or fortune. Instead, he adopted two orphan girls from a Foundling Hospital, and set about educating them to become the meek, docile women he considered marriage material.
Unsurprisingly, Day's marriage plans did not run smoothly. Having returned one orphan early on, his girl of choice, Sabrina Sidney, would also fall foul of the experiment. From then on, she led a difficult life, inhabiting a curious half-world - an ex-orphan, and not quite a ward; a governess, and not quite a fiancée. But Sabrina also ended up figuring in the life of scientists and luminaries as disparate as Erasmus Darwin and Joseph Priestley, as well as that pioneering generation of women writers who included Fanny Burney, Maria Edgeworth and Anna Seward.

In HOW TO CREATE THE PERFECT WIFE, Wendy has found a story that echoes her concerns about women's historic powerlessness, and captures a moment when ideas of human development and childraising underwent radical change.
That Thomas Day sounds like a real catch, doesn't he?
Anyone who would like a chance to win a hardcover copy of How to Create the Perfect Wife only needs to leave a comment on this post by May 8.  Winners shall be announced the following day.  Good luck!

The Small(ish) Print:
This giveaway is open to those with mailing addresses in North America and Europe. The winner will be drawn at random and is responsible for emailing me back within the week with their mailing address so don't forget to check back!

31 comments:

  1. What an icky subject matter, put me in the pot please.

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  2. I've had this on my "to-read" list for bit...sounds fascinating!

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  3. How horrifying! Now I must know what happened to the poor girl!

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  4. What a charming guy! I'd like to read teh book. :)

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  5. That sounds both fascinating and revolting. Does any one know if this was a common practice? Because both Belinda by Maria Edgeworth and Molière's The School for Wives deal with how men want to create a perfect wife and how it usually blows up in their faces.

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  6. As a life long bachelor, this is the book I've been waiting for: count me in, please.

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  7. Interesting stuff - want to see how she fits in with Burney etc...

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  8. That sounds like a very interesting story. I've never heard of that guy!

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  9. I've been interested in reading this for a long time now - if only to find out how such an "enlightened man" could still be such an appalling misogynist!

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  10. Thanks for the giveaway!

    Rachelhwallen@gmail.com

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  11. Thank you for a chance to win this fabulous book.
    My

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  12. Sounds like a very interesting read. One that make for some good discussions! I'd love a chance to win.

    Felicia

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  13. Sounds like a great read... perhaps I could learn something... :)

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  14. Thanks for the giveaway. This looks like a very interesting book. 18th century culture is so fascinating!
    -Julia
    coenobita54 [at] gmail [dot] com

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  15. Oooh - I've had this on my to-read list for months! Would love to win it!

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  16. I'd love to win this book - thank you for the giveaway! :D

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  17. This sounds like an 18th c My Fair Lady or Stepford Wives.

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  19. I also have had this on my "to read" list...a reminder that "the good old days we can so easily romanticize weren't necessarily so.

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  20. Oops! Hit publish by mistake!
    Anyway, however fun and easy it is to romanticize the past, I appreciate getting a view of all sides. Even ones with a big "yucky" factor - they are usually the most enlightening.
    My contemporary self sure hope she gets him good in the end. My historic self finds the situation quite unnerving. Count me in!

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  21. This would be a perfect read formy book club! Thanks for the giveaway!

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  22. This sounds fascinating!! Count me in.

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  23. I'm in! I'm working on a lecture on Reynolds, Gainsborough, & the theater of their time, & your blog is a treasure trove for the naughty tibdits my audience loves. Thank you!!!

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  24. Would love to read, thanks for the giveaway opportunity. :)

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  25. I would love, love to be added to the mix to win this book! I've also gone and added her other ones to my wish-list. The author picks unconventional but no less fascinating subjects to write about and I cannot wait to read 'Knife Man'.

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