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The Fortune Hunter by Daisy Goodwin

The Fortune Hunter

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Sarah Broadhurst's view...

A lovely Victorian saga incorporating many real characters and illustrating the development of the female role in society. Our protagonist, Charlotte Baird’s ambition is to be a photographer and her reputation grows among the wealthy for she is indeed one of them herself. She falls for William George ‘Bay’ Middleton who in turn has a raging affair with the Empress of Austria and a photo that captures their attraction scandalises society when it is part of an exhibition Queen Victoria is to attend. All this adds huge colour to a spirited tale that portrays the restrictions of the three main characters and their rebellion. It’s a cracking read.

In addition to our Lovereading expert opinion some of our Reader Review Panel were also lucky enough to read and review this title.

If you like Daisy Goodwin you might also like to read books by Kate Quinn, Kathryn Harrison and Deborah Swift.

Who is Sarah Broadhurst

Reader Reviews

  • Rebecca Jayne Barrett - 'Full of gripping historical appeal and a whirlwind story, The Fortune Hunter is a book that no one will want to miss.' Read full review >
  • Sarah Tilley - 'A delicious book, best taken sat by a roaring fire tucked away from the outside world.' Read full review >
  • Sally Welham - 'Horses, a beautiful Empress and Victorian society, a heady mix...well written and very enjoyable.' Read full review >
  • Sarah White - 'A big romp of a book...A real guilty pleasure.' Read full review >
  • Caroline Mathews - 'A well-written and engaging historical novel (if a little too long) with great characters and full of period charm.' Read full review >
  • Sharon Matthews - 'A tale of drama set in a world where keeping up appearances for society can mask what is really going on behind closed doors.' Read full review >
  • Debbie Patrick - 'Full of passion and drama, The Fortune Hunter tells the true story of a nineteenth century Queen of Hearts and a cavalry captain, and the struggle between love and duty.' Read full review >
  • Jocelyn Garvey - 'A great well-constructed read with lots of historical details which bring alive the period. It will keep the reader entranced.' Read full review >
  • Mary Chapman - 'Thoroughly enjoyed the book.  Bit of a romp, felt disappointed that it was about real people and we didn't get enough history.' Read full review >
  • Lynn Barrett - 'Daisy Goodwin has already proved herself to be a great storyteller, and The Fortune Hunter continues in the same manner.' Read full review >


The Fortune Hunter by Daisy Goodwin

In 1875, Sisi, the Empress of Austria is the woman that every man desires and every woman envies. Beautiful, athletic and intelligent, Sisi has everything - except happiness.

Bored with the stultifying etiquette of the Hapsburg Court and her dutiful but unexciting husband, Franz Joseph, Sisi comes to England to hunt. She comes looking for excitement and she finds it in the dashing form of Captain Bay Middleton, the only man in Europe who can outride her. Ten years younger than her and engaged to the rich and devoted Charlotte, Bay has everything to lose by falling for a woman who can never be his. But Bay and the Empress are as reckless as each other, and their mutual attraction is a force that cannot be denied. Full of passion and drama, THE FORTUNE HUNTER tells the true story of a nineteenth century Queen of Hearts and a cavalry captain, and the struggle between love and duty.


'A wonderful guilty pleasure... the relief of reading a novel that puts enjoyment first'
Amanda Foreman, Sunday Telegraph

'Sparkling and thoroughly engaging...highly enjoyable'
The Times

'Pure, light-hearted, unpretentious entertainment'
Sunday Express

About the Author

Daisy Goodwin

Daisy Goodwin was our Guest Editor in May 2014 - click here - to see the books that inspired her writing.

Daisy Goodwin was educated at Cambridge and Columbia University. She is a television producer and has edited a number of poetry anthologies. In 2010 her first novel, My Last Duchess was published to critical acclaim and she was chair of the judging panel of the Orange Prize for Fiction. She is married with two daughters.

Author photo © Mike Hogan

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Book Info

Publication date

24th April 2014


Daisy Goodwin

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Headline Review an imprint of Headline Publishing Group


480 pages


Historical Fiction
Romantic Fiction
eBook Favourites
eBook Favourites

Historical fiction



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