The Sealed Letter

The Sealed Letter
Emma Donoghue
Reviewed by Sue Morgan
Thu, 13/10/2011

The Sealed Letter is an account 
of a declining marriage and subsequent divorce, based on 
a true story dating back to 1864, when divorce, only recently legal, was seen as scandalous. The main protagonists are Harry, a rather strait-laced admiral, his beautiful young wife Helen, and Helen’s friend Emily ‘Fido’ Faithfull, 
a passionate believer in the women’s rights movement. As 
Fido becomes swept up in Helen’s messy life, her attempts to help her friend escalate into a courtroom drama, complete with stained clothing, accusations of adultery, counterclaims of rape and a mysterious, potentially destructive, sealed letter. An absorbing read with vivid characters.       


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