The Whish List

Book Reviews: "Be awesome! Be a book nut!" – Dr Seuss

Month: August 2015

The Woman in the Picture by Katharine McMahon

woman in the pictureReviewed for Mumsnet Bookclub.


The kids were on a sleepover yesterday so I took full advantage and read this book in one juicy sitting! In fact, I couldn’t put it down. It’s an epic read about a ground-breaking lawyer, Evelyn Gifford and is set in 1926 when the country was gripped by a General Strike. This book’s themes encompass women’s rights, class inequality, domestic violence, paternity and above all relationships. It is a follow-up to ‘The Crimson Rooms’ but is easily a stand alone book as I haven’t read that book and there is enough back story to ensure that you don’t need to have read that book first.
As well as exploring Evelyn’s relationships with her boss, Breen and past love, Nicholas, it also cleverly deals with her wider family and identity and mirrors this by having two legal cases that Evelyn’s working on that are at the heart of the book.
This really is a great book to lose yourself in. The front cover states a review by Grazia magazine; ‘for fans of Downton Abbey’ and it is but it is also so much more than that. From it’s cover imagery of a woman who looks of the period but also looks contemporary, this is a book that is of its time but also has striking parallels with our lives and wider society today.