Polly's Story by Jennie Walters

Polly's Story

For 'Downton Abbey' fans! Scandal, romance and intrigue in a grand old English country house: Swallowcliffe Hall, home to the aristocratic Vye family and the staff who look after them. When Polly Perkins starts work at the Hall, she finds it hard to learn the manners and etiquette expected of her. Life at Swallowcliffe is a whirl of shooting parties, picnics and balls, and an army of servants is required to look after the guests.¬†Housemaids are¬...

Details Polly's Story

TitlePolly's Story
GenreFiction, Historical, Historical Fiction, European Literature, British Literature

Reviews Polly's Story

  • Stephanie
    I first read this book, which is the first in the Swallowcliffe Hall trilogy about 2 years ago when I was researching Victorian servants and it has remained one of my favourite books since. Polly, who is 14 when she first walks through the imposing gates of Swallowcliffe Hall to become under-housemaid, having left home to help support her younger siblings and mother because their father was drowned at sea. As it is 1890, the fashion for extravaga...
  • Sandie
    Jennie Walters HOUSE OF SECRETS reveals the hidden lives of the residents of Swallowcliffe Hall as seen through the eyes of a 14 year old servant girl named Polly Perkins. Similar in some respects to its adult focused predecessors like Upstairs-Downstairs, Ms. Walters has chosen to write this book for a YA audience and has selected a contemporary of that age group as her narrator. Kudos to her for not "writing down" to her teen readers and specia...
  • Anna
    This was didactic & slight, but I could see how it might work as a story for children who want to learn more about life as a domestic servant in a Victorian great house. Gets a bit racy when (view spoiler)[ one of the maids has an affair with a son of the house, gets pregnant, is thrown into the workhouse & dies in squalor, (hide spoiler)] though the (view spoiler)[baby (hide spoiler)] gets an unrealistically happy ending.
  • Katherine Coble
    Oops; i mixed up my reviews. The review for Polly's Story is under Grace's Story by mistake. But honestly, other than the fact that this book is the one that i read first, the review applies equally well to both books. They are each unputdownable reads with a comfortable setting, great characters and intriguing plot lines.
  • Cindi Boselli
    My favorite era. I will be following the rest of the family as they grow, not only the change in the class, but the world. Very well written, a quick read and very entertaining.
  • Patricia Miller
    Wonderful storyMust have been very well researched and the story had a a great running narrative, I did enjoy the book and am anxious to read the next one in the series.
  • Nicky Schmidt
    Swallowcliffe Hall - House of Secrets is a delightful story providing rare insight to life "below stairs" in a grand Victorian house. Too seldom do we read a story about the life of servants; their hopes and dreams and hardships from those faraway times. Jennie Walters has researched her subject matter well - the little chapter heading inserts are absolute gems and the accompanying website - www.swallowcliffehall.com - is a treasure. The author h...
  • Alyssa (The Shady Glade)
    I did enjoy this one, especially as I'm working my way through Downton Abbey right now. There were a lot of things that reminded me of that series. :) My only complaint was that the book didn't really seem to have much of a plot. It was more like a series of vignettes of things that happened to Polly over her first year (or so) at Swallowcliffe Hall. I didn't really feel like there was an overarching plot that drove the whole story. Still, I did ...
  • Joanna
    I thought this ended rather abruptly. I was reading a Kindle edition and all of a sudden the 2nd book started. But all in all an interesting story and I'll probably read the other two just to complete the set. After Downton Abbey, Upstairs Downstairs and numerous other books, movies, etc. we probably all know the drill but I liked the quotes from the various publications of the time regarding servant etiquette.
  • Kitti
    This was so interesting. I found Polly's Story by way of Downton Abbey and felt compelled to pick it up. It's a behind-the-scenes look at the servants. Super quick read -it's all I have time for these days.
  • Ainul Basyirah
    Very interesting! It triggers me to read more about how old institutions such as the maid institution, carry out their functions in the society, and the impact can still be sen until today. Simple but very catchy for me. :)
  • Karen Hogan
    If you like Downton Abbey, you"ll like this book. It's suppose to be for the YA audience, but I think adults will like 14 year old Polly's story about her job as an under maid at Swallowcliffe. there are at least 3 more books in the series. $3.99 on Kindle. Can't beat that....
  • Brenda
    Nice story. I was in the mood for an upstairs downstairs type book after watching Dowton Abbey. I would have liked a more adult book but this was enjoyable.
  • Sandy H
    Fairly well written and somewhat engaging.
  • Reema
  • Laura Beth
    Good story, but disappointed by the abrupt ending.
  • judith rajchel
    Swallowcliffe Hall. Book 1Love Downton Abby & this looked similar. This 1st book was very good. Looking forward to the rest of the series.
  • Jerlyn Ochoa
    A very engaging read.
  • Melanie
    A quick read and good description of the below stairs activities.
  • The-walking-dead
    2.5 stars
  • Cathy Drolet
    Quick read. Very light and enjoyable.
  • Teresa
    A short, quick read that I enjoyed.
  • CLM
    A relatively slight but charming story about a loyal and industrious girl who becomes a maid on a country estate at the end of the 19th century.
  • Erin
    Just got this in and can not wait to read it!
  • Tania
    The ending was a bit abrupt, but besides that I really enjoyed it.
  • Paula Scott
    I enjoyed this book, as will any fan of Downton Abbey.
  • Patsy
    Feb 2012
  • Vi Khong
    This is a good series for Downton Abbey' fans!
  • Sue
    This is young adult fiction--didn't know that in advance. Probably a good read for that audience. A bit bland and unremarkable for adults, although a quick easy read that wasn't horrible.