|The Darling Strumpet,
by Gillian Bagwell
Once upon a time, in London during the 1660's, there lived a little girl named Nell. She was not having a very good time of it. Her story opens here, as she awakened one morning, in pain. "Her body ached from the beating her mother had given her the night before." Soon, she decides that rather than endure further such treatment, she will strike out on her own. This, though she is not yet twelve years old. And how might she earn her keep? By joining her sister in the oldest profession in the world. All the while Nell is growing up, someone else is passing the years in London as well. This was Charles ll, who had ridden triumphantly into London after the death of Oliver Cromwell. Nell's path is to cross with that of Charles, and the tangle of their emotions continues over the decades. They meet as a result of Nell joining the King's Company. With the other players, she acts upon the stage and becomes a recognizable personality. As their passion grows, Nell is challenged in many ways. Yet she manages to ride a course from rags to riches, and the legacy of her time on our earth is rich.
From: Bagwell, G. (2011) The Darling Strumpet. New York: The Berkley Publishing Group
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