• Title: The Good Wife
  • Author: Eleanor Porter
  • Publisher: Boldwood Books on February 16, 2021
  • Genre: Historical Fiction
  • Pages: 328
  • Formats Available: Paperback, Audiobook, & Digital
  • Rating: 4/5

Trigger Warnings: Graphic Violence, Murder, Miscarriage due to Violence, Forced Groping

Many thanks to Rachel’s Random Resources, Eleanor Porter, and Boldwood Books for providing me with a digital copy of The Good Wife with a request for an honest review.

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The Good Wife Blurb

Where will her loyalty lead her?

Once accused of witchcraft Martha Spicer is now free from the shadow of the gallows and lives a safe and happy life with her husband, Jacob. But when Jacob heads north to accompany his master, he warns Martha to keep her healing gifts a secret, to keep herself safe, to be a good wife.

Martha loves Jacob but without him there to protect her, she soon comes under the suspicious eye of the wicked Steward Boult, who’s heard of her talent and forces her to attend to him. If she refuses, he promises to destroy the good life she has built for herself with Jacob.

Desperate and alone, Martha faces a terrible decision: stay and be beholden to Boult or journey north to find Jacob who is reported to have been killed.. The road ahead is filled with danger, but also the promise of a brighter future. And where her gifts once threatened to be her downfall, might they now be the very thing that sets Martha free…?

The brilliant follow-up to Eleanor Porter’s first novel of love, betrayal, superstition and fear in Elizabethan England. A story of female courage, ingenuity and determination , this is perfect for fans of Tracy Chevalier.

Provided by Rachel’s Random Resources for Tour Use

My Review

Eleanor Porter’s novel, The Good Wife, is vastly interesting and entertaining. I had no idea that it was a sequel. The writing is so good that you don’t need to read the first book to enjoy this one. Also, the historical context at the end is fascinating. The research involved is excellent. To know that some of these characters were real people and the towns are real is a phenomenal feeling.

The way Porter writes Martha and Jacob into a real-life past is extraordinary. I have long loved apothecaries of old. That Martha holds this magic in her heart makes me wish to have been there alongside her. 

I admit that I was unsure of this book at first. It was a little too boring with Martha and Jacob having this undying love. But, watching Martha grow from a mousy waif to a strong, compelling woman at the end is inspirational. I loved her journey, even the parts that I wish I could skip.

I thoroughly enjoyed this novel and hope beyond hope that there is more story for Martha. In the meantime, I will be reading the first novel to learn more about her past.

I am happy to award The Good Wife 4 out of 5 stars. Anyone who loves history with a little (supposed) witchcraft mixed in will love this novel. Though, you might want to have a few tissues on hand. There are a few dusty places.

About the Author – Eleanor Porter

Eleanor Porter has lectured at Universities in England and Hong Kong and her poetry and short fiction has been published in magazines. The Wheelwright’s Daughter was her first novel.

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