In 1789, Armande, a wet nurse who is known for the mystical qualities of her breast milk, goes missing. Céleste, a cunning servant girl who Armande once saved from shame and starvation, sets out to find her. A snuffbox found in the snow, the unexpected arrival of a gentleman and the discovery of the wet nurse’s diary, deepen the mystery. Using Armande’s diary as a map to her secret past, Céleste fights to save her from those plotting to steal the wisdom of her milk. Milk Fever is a rich and inspired tale set on the eve of the French Revolution- a delicious peek into this age s history. The story explores the fight for women/s rights and the rise in clandestine literature laying bare sexuality, the nature of love and the magic of books to transform lives.
Summary & Cover taken from Goodreads.com
Length: 262 pages (Paperback)
Source: Toronto Public Library
Available Formats: Print/E-book
Publication Date: October 18th 2013 by Demeter Press
When I first got the invitation for Milk Fever I had no idea it was written by a Canadian author until later when I googled Lissa M. Cowan and that is what made me sign up for the tour since I'm all about promoting Canadian authors, plus I've grown rather fond of historical fiction set in France so how could I resist?
I really enjoyed the way that the author told Celeste's story which was intertwined with that of her best friend, the nursemaid Armande who along with her father took in the young Celeste and taught her to read, write and most importantly use her mind in an era where intelligent women were frowned upon. I thought it was very interesting that she touched on the political undertones of the time with the French Revolution brewing in the background.
I also really enjoyed Celeste and Armande's characters. They were very different but were very well written and they seemed so close they were almost like sisters in many of the ways that they interacted with one another. I envy the bond that they have and found them to be very well developed and I enjoyed they're backstories very much. I also thought that the whole idea of Armande going missing was a good one though since I don't want to give anything away I'm going to refrain from mentioning any of the events that happen after she disappears, that my friends you'll just have to find out what Celeste is willing to do to find her beloved friend. I will say however, that she pulled out all the stops and used what meager resources she had to rise above her station as a meager peasant through the use of reading and writing.
Captivating and engrossing, I thought Milk Fever was a very well researched, well written novel that transported me to the late 1700's and had me reading late into the night in order to find out what would happen next.
I would recommend Milk Fever to any and all fans of historical fiction especially historical fiction set in France with a likable set of characters and an equally strong plot.
Really Enjoyed It!
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