10 Best Lesbian Novels Based In The UK
Welcome to The Lesbian Review Podcast. Today I am joined by avid reader and fan of all things lesfic, Beni G – moderator of lesbian audiobook group on facebook, and moderator of the yahoo group the virtual living room
We are talking UK lesfic and books we really, really loved.
Criteria: Written by UK based author, main character is from the UK.
1 Fingersmith by Sarah Waters
London in 1862 – Sue Trinder is an orphan who grows up among petty thieves (fingersmiths).
Maud is born into a wealthy family. She works with her uncle on documenting his collection of books.
One evening Gentleman enlists Sue’s help and proposes a scam to get hold of Maud’s money. Sue is to play Maud’s maid and help her realise that she is in love her painting teacher, Gentleman.
Gentleman will then propose to Maude, they will marry and he will be rich.
But, things are not as they seem. The novel is full of twists and turns that keep you guessing.
This book crossed into mainstream and managed to keep excellent reviews
2 Courting The Countess by Jenny Frame
The story is about Henrietta “Harry” Knight and Annie Brannigan. Harry loves her job as a professor of Archeology at Cambridge University and when her father dies and she becomes Countess of Axedale she is pulled away from her beloved career to fulfil a promise she made to her grandfather. The promise was that she would restore Axedale Hall to its former state of glory.
Harry is in need of a housekeeper to help her manage the house while she is overseeing the renovations on the property. Enter Annie, housekeeper extraordinaire and mother to Riley a sweet, curious, girl who is utterly fascinated by history.
Harry doesn’t believe in true love. She saw her mother destroyed by her father’s cruelty and feels a deep sense of abandonment because her mother left when she was a little girl.
Annie wants to find a forever home for her and Riley. She wants a place to call her own so that she doesn’t have to keep dragging her daughter from post to post.
The question is, will Harry and Annie be able to put their own fears and histories aside to see what is really between them?
Two reviewer favorite badges – Sheena and Tara and we did it as a book club read
3 Lost In The Starlight by Kiki Archer
This is the story of two women from very different backgrounds. On the one hand you have singing superstar, Honey Diamond and on the other hand you have the owner of a popular gossip website, Meg.
Honey is a sweet, naive and over protected superstar. As a result she has lived an idealistic, yet sheltered life and has never really had to ask the tough questions or handle giving difficult answers even though she has been famous for most of her life and is no stranger to the spotlight.
One day Honey opens a gossip website and sees that there is speculation on whether or not she is a lesbian. She has never had to formally come out because no one has ever actually asked her about her sexuality and she cannot understand why her mother is so against her publicly announcing that she is, in fact, a lesbian.
Meg is smitten with Honey and feels it deeply that Honey hasn’t come out to the public. She has no idea the stir she causes when she writes a piece for her website about Honey being a lesbian and little does she know this will lead to a life changing event for both women.
Lost In The Starlight is an absolutely charming, hilarious and gorgeous story or two women from different backgrounds learning that life is a little more complicated than they thought when it comes to love and secrets.
This book was done as a book club read
4 It Had To Be You by Clare Lydon
Georgia and Milly are in a relationship and Milly wants Georgia to come home with her for Christmas. Georgia worries that their significant age gap will be a problem, she is old enough to be Milly’s mother and she is not convinced that she will have a lot to talk about with Milly’s family.
Who’s to know that the simple act of meeting the family will turn lives upside down as the past comes to back to haunt them all.
3 Reviewer favorite badges – Sheena, Tamara and Tara
5 No Good Reason by Cari Hunter
This is the first novel in the Dark Peak series. It introduces Sanne Jensen and Meg Fielding. Sanne (a detective) and Meg (a doctor) have been best friends for a long time. Occasionally they are friends with benefits. They are both terrified of ruining their friendship by becoming a couple and so they keep things as they are.
The story centres around Sanne who goes out running and discovers a woman who is barely alive after a fall off a cliff. Her hands are bound and she is not wearing much clothing. Sanne is part of the team to investigate the kidnapping while Meg tries to keep the woman alive at the hospital.
When the woman wakes up and begins to speak what she says turns Sanne’s world on its head. Sanne realises that time could be running out for her to catch the kidnapper.
High quality thriller with an incidental lesbian
6 That Certain Something by Clare Ashton
That Certain Something by Clare Ashton is a story about two women who are drawn together for a wonderful, once-in-a-lifetime night.
They then part ways only to discover that they are drawn together again by a strange twist of fate. Only the one woman was hiding something from the other.
I don’t want to give too much of the story away because it will ruin some of the fun.
7 A Walk into Darkness by Jade Winters
Twenty-five years after a young girl goes missing from her home in South-East England, most have given up hope of ever finding closure. But when a renowned psychic has visions of a murder the police reopen the case, placing the puzzle of the ‘woodlands killer’ in Ashley McCoy’s capable hands.
Firmly set in the harsh reality of a world where the young and beautiful are not safe from dangerous hands, A Walk Into Darkness navigates the ups and downs of Ashley’s life; desperate to solve the cold case without letting the trials and intrigues of life get in the way. When the delectable Tasha comes onto the scene, both women struggle to find a balance between their responsibilities and the undeniable chemistry behind their growing friendship.
A story of murder, intrigue and the twisting path of life and love.
8 Nightingale by Andrea Bramhall
When Charlie Porter meets Hazaar Alim her first year of university, she’s instantly smitten. Hazaar has it all: beauty, talent, and brains. What she doesn’t realize is that Hazaar’s future has already been decided, and Charlie has no place in it.
Hazaar desperately wants to break with her traditions and stay with Charlie, but when forced to choose, she chooses her family over love. When she realizes the choice she made is the worst one possible, it’s too late.
Years later, while working in Pakistan as a diplomat and negotiator, Charlie receives a phone call from a woman who says her British sister-in-law is to be killed for the family’s honor and asks if someone can save her.
Charlie and Hazaar are on a collision course with destiny. If they make it out alive, can they believe in their love once again?
9 After the Night by Rachel Dax
After The Night is a sweeping lesbian love story set in a British prison in 1960. When Nurse Leah Webster begins her first job at a prison hospital, little does she know that her world will be turned upside down by falling in love with Chief Officer Jean MacFarlane. But the course of lesbian love does not always run smoothly and together Leah and Jean have to fight homophobia both within and without the prison walls.
10 Christmas At Winterbourne by Jen Silver
The Christmas festivities for the guests booked into Winterbourne House have all the goings-on of a traditional holiday. The only difference is that this guesthouse is run by lesbians, for lesbians.
When the guests arrive, tensions are already simmering between the house’s owner Wilma (Wil) and very pregnant partner, Gabriella. Wil has a lot on her plate…ensuring the smooth running of the events, looking after all the guests, including her in-laws and business partners. What she hasn’t planned for is a ghost from Christmas past.
Wil inherited Winterbourne from her adopted mother, Kim Russell, author of a series of successful lesbian novels. Most of the guests who stay, do so because they are fans of the author.
One guest, Sally Hunter, is on a mission to write Kim’s official biography. She meets with resistance from the people at the house she tries to interview, stirring up memories from those who knew the reclusive writer well.
For a bit of extra spice to the festivities, add in an unexpected snowstorm, a disappearing guest, and an imminent birth. Join the guests and staff at Winterbourne for a Christmas you’ll not soon forget.
Poppy Jenkins by Clare Ashton
Poppy Jenkins is beloved by everyone who lives in Wells, a village in Wales. She is the girl next door and friend to all. Despite being close to her loving family, gorgeous little sister, good friends and sense of community, she is the only lesbian in town and she is lonely.
Enter Rosalyn Thorn.
Roselyn and Poppy were inseparable as youngsters. Roselyn was the town outsider, she spoke her mind and was not a pushover. As a result she was labelled as trouble and the only reason anyone put up with her was because of her connection to Poppy.
Then they turned 16 and overnight, something happened that caused Roselyn to push Poppy away breaking her heart. Eventually Roselyn left town and Poppy was left with a big question mark as to why she had lost her best friend.
15 years later Roselyn walks back into Poppy’s life and turns her calm, quiet world upside down. Hurt feelings erupt and secrets are revealed. But can they ever find friendship again, let alone anything more?
Three reviewer favorite badges – Tamara, Sheena and Tara
Secret Lies by Amy Dunne
Secret Lies by Amy Dunne is about two teenage girls. The main character is Nicola Jackson who is the outsider at school. She is abused by her stepfather and is desperate to escape from him. She runs away from home and in her haste she bumps into the popular girl from school, Jenny.
Jenny is fighting her own demons and ends up inviting Nicola to stay the night. The two strike up a friendship that evolves into more.
The novel is about what happens when families, friends and authorities find out about their budding lesbian relationship.