The Virgin Blue
Perfect for fans of Barbara Erskine, Kate Morton and Sarah Waters, this is historical fiction at its very best. The compelling story of two women, born four centuries apart, and the ancestral legacy that binds them. Ella Turner does her best to fit in to the small, close-knit community of Lisle-sur-Tarn. She even changes her name back to Tournier, and knocks the rust off her high school French. But it is all in vain. Isolated and lonely, she is drawn to investigate her Tournier ancestry, which leads to her encounter with the town's wolfish librarian. Isabelle du Moulin, known as Le Rousse due to her fiery red hair, is tormented and shunned in the village - suspected of witchcraft and reviled for her association with the Virgin Mary. Falling pregnant, she is forced to marry into the ruling family: the Tourniers. Tormentor becomes husband, and a shocking fate awaits her. Plagued by the colour blue, Ella is haunted by parallels with the past, and by her recurring dream. Then one morning she wakes up to discover that her hair is turning inexplicably red...
'Tracy Chevalier's first novel is a triumph. Excellent.' Time Out 'An intriguing and poignant read.' Sunday Express 'Such an achievement for a serious writer that you feel it deserves an award.' Independent