Book lover and Jane Austen enthusiast Sophie Collingwood has recently taken a job at an antiquarian bookshop in London when she is drawn into a mystery that will cast doubt on the true authorship of PRIDE AND PREJUDICE --- and ultimately threaten Sophie’s life. This dual narrative alternates between Sophie’s quest to uncover the truth and a young Jane Austen’s touching friendship with the aging cleric Richard Mansfield.
Hay-on-Wye, 1995. Peter Byerly isn’t sure what drew him into this particular bookshop. Nine months earlier, the death of his beloved wife, Amanda, had left him shattered. The young antiquarian bookseller relocated to the English countryside, hoping to rediscover the joy he once took in collecting and restoring rare books. But upon opening an eighteenth-century study of Shakespeare forgeries, Peter is shocked when a portrait of Amanda tumbles out of its pages. Of course, it isn’t really her, yet the resemblance is uncanny, and Peter becomes obsessed with learning the picture’s origins.