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The Square of Sevens

A novel by

This “intricately plotted, epic” (The Times, London) international bestseller—in the vein of the vivid novels of Sarah Waters and Sarah Perry—follows an orphaned fortune teller in 18th-century England as she searches for answers about her long-dead mother.

Cornwall, 1730: A young girl known only as Red travels with her father making a living predicting fortunes using the ancient Cornish method of the Square of Sevens. Shortly before he dies, her father entrusts Red���s care to a gentleman scholar, along with a document containing the secret of the Square of Sevens technique.

Raised as a lady amidst the Georgian splendor of Bath, Red’s fortune telling delights in high society. But she cannot ignore the questions that gnaw at her soul: who was her mother? How did she die? And who are the mysterious enemies her father was always terrified would find him?

The pursuit of these mysteries takes her from Cornwall and Bath to London and Devon, from the rough ribaldry of the Bartholomew Fair to the grand houses of two of the most powerful families in England. And while Red’s quest brings her the possibility of great reward, it also leads to grave danger.

“Intricate, haunting, and magical by turns, Laura Shepherd-Robinson’s tale is an absolute immersive read you won’t soon forget” (Patti Callahan Henry,
New York Times bestselling author).

Genre: Historical Mystery

Praise for this book

"Intricate, compelling and stuffed full of intrigue, The Square of Sevens will sweep you into its world." - Fiona Barton

"Laura Shepherd-Robinson has created an instant classic. Red is unforgettable. The story is a treasure trove of lavish Georgian riches, female ingenuity and bitter betrayal . . . and I didn't want it to end." - Sophia Bennett

"Compelling, thrilling, totally absorbing. The rich period detail never once weighs down the pace of the storytelling in this exhilarating tale where fate and destiny come up against courage and ambition in wealthy, corrupt Georgian society. I loved it." - Tammy Cohen

"A gorgeously written and plotted Georgian thriller with elements of Moll Flanders, theatre, cartomancy, and Bath. It's as absorbing as Charles Palliser's The Quincunx." - Amanda Craig

"In The Square of Sevens, Laura Shepherd-Robinson excels at recreating the past - in this case, Georgian England - in an authentic way. She invites us to join fortune teller Red on an epic journey to unravel the secrets of her past and we cannot rest until we have answers. Dazzling." - Fiona Cummins

"The Square of Sevens isn't just a five-star read, it's a fully immersive experience. I lived Red's quest, rooting for her every step of the way. Loaded with plot and intrigue and sumptuous period detail, this kept me guessing until the end." - Caz Frear

"The Square of Sevens is a cunningly plotted and wonderfully captivating novel that conjures up the Georgian period with a magical touch. Shepherd-Robinson guides us effortlessly through the social and political landscape of the time - the South Sea Bubble, the wonders of science, the complicated manners of Bath society - and populates this terrain, from drawing rooms to backstreets, with a plucky heroine and a cast of hugely engaging characters, each with their own secrets and flaws and all woven together with Dickensian deftness. I defy even the most curmugeonly not to be thoroughly entertained." - Elizabeth Fremantle

"A book that stays with you . . . The Square of Sevens is a masterpiece." - Janice Hallett

"This is a fabulously evocative novel, with a heroine who proves the most wonderful company, and a finely spun mystery which keeps you turning the pages. The Square of Sevens invites you into a magical world which you won't want to leave." - Elodie Harper

"Ever since her bestselling debut, Blood & Sugar, Laura Shepherd-Robinson has made the Georgian era her own. In her latest, The Square of Sevens, she revisits the period, this time following a young girl named Red as she navigates the dark mysteries of her own past and the convoluted - and murderous - machinations of two of the country's most prominent dynasties warring over a disputed inheritance. A big, meaty, meticulously researched and unashamedly ambitious historical novel." - Vaseem Khan

"Laura Shepherd-Robinson is a master storyteller and she excels herself with this Dickensian epic. Relentless twists, heartbreaking storylines and impeccable research. It doesn't get much better than this." - Emily Koch

"A very clever, intricate and fascinating novel." - Anna Mazzola

"Such brilliant storytelling with twists and turns that leave you breathless. I love Laura's books and this is her best yet." - Julie Owen Moylan

"My favourite Laura Shepherd-Robinson novel yet. Fortune telling, Cornwall and Bath. What's not to love? Completely compelling and clever, of course. And in Red, a heroine I wanted to spend days with." - Joanna Nadin

"Fortune-telling, hidden documents, priest holes, courtroom drama and dramatic revelations:The Square of Sevens is a deck of cards crammed full with secrets and lies." - Leonora Nattrass

"What a magnificent novel. I would advise any reader to set aside reading time to fully concentrate on this brilliantly complex story. Meticulously researched and beautifully written, this is one of the most intriguing books I have ever read." - Liz Nugent

"What a magnificent rollercoaster ride of a book . . . Laura Shepherd-Robinson writes with such a fluid, easy style, with a knack for putting in just the right amount of detail to perfectly paint the world she is describing . . . I am in awe." - James Oswald

"It's impossible to overstate the brilliance Laura Shepherd-Robinson demonstrates in her work. To find a writer with such a clear love and understanding of her subject and have it matched by a sparkling ability to spin a yarn is rare and exciting. The Square of Sevens is an exquisite feat in storytelling: intelligent, dark, surprising, moving, and always entertaining. Shepherd-Robinson's characters are so brilliantly drawn, the story so richly imagined, and the world she conjures so vivid that I imagined myself there, amidst it all, my heart in my mouth as the players race towards their fate." - Charlotte Philby

"Pitch-perfect. Laura Shepherd Robinson has done it again- a beautifully strung novel quivering with just the right blend of pace, plot and historical detail. Bravo!" - Victoria Selman

"This is such a glorious adventure, full of scheming and betrayal, with a delicious whiff of magic at its heart. Our hero holds only a few cards, and she must play them exactly right if she wants to survive." - William Shaw

"A sweeping Dickensian tour de force of a novel, The Square of Sevens is an immaculately researched piece of fiction with all the twists and turns of a fortune teller's wheel, cementing the author's place as the queen of modern Georgian literature. Bravo Laura Shepherd-Robinson, I'm in awe!" - Susan Stokes-Chapman

"This is a book to relish, not rush through. Rich in historical detail, it's immersive, authoritative and Dickensian in scope. Fundamentally though it's a damn good story, brilliantly told. I loved it." - Harriet Tyce

"A sprawling, exquisite, outright triumph. The Square of Sevens dazzles with heart, mystery and breathtaking detail. I doubt I'll read a better book this year." - Chris Whitaker

"She's only gone and done it again! What a sumptuous, intricate, masterfully woven and beautifully told story of deception and corruption, power & passion, family secrets and enduring lies. Absolutely exquisite." - Erin Young

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