10 books like What the Lady's Maid Knew

By E.E. Holmes,

Here are 10 books that authors have personally recommended if you like What the Lady's Maid Knew. Shepherd is a community of 7,000+ authors sharing their favorite books with the world.

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The Watchmaker's Daughter

By C. J. Archer,

Book cover of The Watchmaker's Daughter

This book is a wonderful blending of historical fiction and fantasy. With an intriguing mystery that isn’t the standard “murder mystery” fair, this book sets up for a fantastical series that will lead the reader deeper and deeper into mystery and magic. I love the mixing of genres and the historical setting.

The Watchmaker's Daughter

By C. J. Archer,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked The Watchmaker's Daughter as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

USA Today bestselling series.

India Steele is desperate. Her father is dead, her fiancé took her inheritance, and no one will employ her, despite years working for her watchmaker father. Indeed, the other London watchmakers seem frightened of her. Alone, poor, and at the end of her tether, India takes employment with the only person who'll accept her - an enigmatic and mysterious man from America. A man who possesses a strange watch that rejuvenates him when he's ill.

Matthew Glass must find a particular watchmaker, but he won't tell India why any old one won't do. Nor will he…


The Librarian of Crooked Lane

By C. J. Archer,

Book cover of The Librarian of Crooked Lane

Another entry by C.J. Archer (can you tell I like this author?) and another great blending of genres.  Set in turn of the century England but including the existence of magic, the world-building is sure to immerse you and keep you reading on to the next book. Again, the “mystery” built in is not your typical, which makes the reading all the more intriguing.

The Librarian of Crooked Lane

By C. J. Archer,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Librarian of Crooked Lane as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A librarian with a mysterious past, a war hero with a secret, and the heist of a magic painting. THE LIBRARIAN OF CROOKED LANE is an intriguing new fantasy from C.J. Archer, the USA Today bestselling author of the Glass and Steele series.

Librarian Sylvia Ashe knows nothing about her past, having grown up without a father and a mother who refused to discuss him. When she stumbles upon a diary that suggests she’s descended from magicians, she’s skeptical. After all, magicians are special, and she’s just an ordinary girl who loves books. She seeks the truth from a member…


Murder in the Crypt

By Irina Shapiro,

Book cover of Murder in the Crypt: A Redmond and Haze Mystery Book 1

I know I keep beating the same drum, but just try to take a look at that cover and tell me the story doesn’t look intriguing (and yes, I do see the similarities between this cover and that of The Murder on Black Swan Lane). 

Like any self-respecting English mystery, this one begins with a main character discovering he’s received a bequest of an English estate and its accompanying title. This particular main character is Jason Redmond, a Captain and doctor in the Union Army during the American Civil War. At the end of the war, he returns home to find his sweetheart has married his best friend during his absence. When he receives news of the bequest, having no one to marry and still experiencing haunting memories of the tragedies he witnessed during the war, he heads to England to dispose of the estate (at least, that’s his…

Murder in the Crypt

By Irina Shapiro,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Murder in the Crypt as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

When the body of a young man is found stuffed into the tomb of a medieval knight, Parish Constable Daniel Haze is tasked with investigating his first solo murder case. Suspicion instantly falls on the only stranger to arrive in the village of Birch Hill just before the crime took place, but the American captain proves to be an unexpected asset. A former soldier and a skilled surgeon, Jason Redmond is not only willing to assist Haze with the investigation but will risk his own safety to apprehend the killer.With no suspects, no motive, and few leads to follow, Redmond…


The Lady Jewel Diviner

By Rosalie Oaks,

Book cover of The Lady Jewel Diviner

Magic and mystery, what a combination! With a murderer on the loose and a Regency England setting, get ready for manners mixed with magic. On top of that, there’s a dash of romance ala Victoria Holt that’ll keep you glued to the pages! This one really hits a lot of the marks gothic mystery readers will love. The mystery is really strong, and the characters are believable as is the blending of real world with magic. Ms. Oaks does a fantastic job of creating a page-turner that hits all the marks of classic historical, gothic mystery fiction.

The Lady Jewel Diviner

By Rosalie Oaks,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Lady Jewel Diviner as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Diamonds, Death, and Devonshire tea… in a magical Regency England

Miss Elinor Avely's proper upbringing cannot prepare her for the tiny, spinster vampire who crashes into her sitting room and demands to be fed with a sheep.

Elinor already has enough troubles without having to catch ruminants. First, her secret gift for divining jewels has landed her in scandal, exiling her from London society. Second, a nobleman of dubious repute wants her to find a cache of smuggled jewels, hidden somewhere along the Devon coastline. Last – and worst – she is invited to cream tea at the local manor.…


Splinters of Scarlet

By Emily Bain Murphy,

Book cover of Splinters of Scarlet

Sometimes a single mansion can contain a world within itself and the one contained here must be explored at your own peril. Intricate passages, decadent décor, and an upstairs/downstairs divide await, along with murder, mystery, and magic. The story centers on a girl who possesses an insidious gift that can save the ones she loves but at a deadly cost. Told against a backdrop full of lavish ballet costumes, this novel left me wondering how far one should go for another, especially when the sacrifice might be fatal.  

Splinters of Scarlet

By Emily Bain Murphy,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Splinters of Scarlet as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Marit doesn't like to use magic too often; it always comes with a heavy price. When her best friend Eve is adopted by a legendary former dancer and placed in an elite ballet program outside of Copenhagen, Marit draws upon her powers to secure a job with the wealthy family so that she can watch over her. But Marit has another, secret motivation: her father died while working for the dancer's family, and she has reason to believe he was murdered.

While Marit adapts to her glittering new life in Copenhagen, she starts to investigate her father's death in earnest.…


Campaigns of Curiosity

By Elizabeth L. Banks,

Book cover of Campaigns of Curiosity: Journalistic Adventures of an American Girl in London

Elizabeth Banks was an American journalist who settled in London around 1893. She undertook a series of ‘adventures’ in which she posed as a laundry girl, a crossing sweeper, a flower girl, a chaperone, an heiress, and a domestic servant. In working as a maid, she hoped to discover why domestic service ‘was looked upon with so much contumely’. 

Originally published as "In Cap and Apron" in the Weekly Sun, Elizabeth’s experiences were then published in 1894 in Campaigns of Curiosity: Journalistic Adventures of an American Girl in London. It’s not clear how much artistic licence Elizabeth used when describing her time in domestic service, but she does provide some interesting details about the duties of staff in households where three or four servants were employed.

Campaigns of Curiosity

By Elizabeth L. Banks,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Campaigns of Curiosity as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Campaigns of Curiosity; Journalistic Adventures of an American Girl in London is the autobiography of a girl from New Jersey living in London during the height of the Victorian Era.


Diary of William Tayler, Footman 1837

By Dorothy Wise Tayler,

Book cover of Diary of William Tayler, Footman 1837

William Tayler worked as a footman in London for the wealthy widow Mrs. Prinsep and her unmarried daughter. He kept a diary for the year 1837 "as I am a wretched bad writer [and] many of my friends have advised me to practice more…" On Sundays, he usually went to see his wife and children who were lodged nearby, although he never mentions her or them by name. 

As it focuses on just one year, the diary only provides a snapshot of William’s working life. However, it gives an illuminating insight into the life of a male servant for the gentry, including details of what William did in his spare time and how the wealthy entertained. Research has shown that he later became a butler.

Diary of William Tayler, Footman 1837

By Dorothy Wise Tayler,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Diary of William Tayler, Footman 1837 as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Before you read William’s Journal, it is necessary to sketch in his background as briefly as possible. He came from the hamlet of Grafton, which is situated in the south-west corner of Oxfordshire, not far from Faringdon in Berkshire. Its seven grey Cotswold stone farmhouses are linked together by a brook and in the old days you could walk from one house to another along the brookside. These farmhouses sit like old ladies facing the sun and are all on the north side of the brook. In front of them lies all that is left of Grafton Common. If you…


Life as We Have Known It

By Co-operative Women’s Guild, Margaret Llewelyn Davies (editor),

Book cover of Life as We Have Known It

With this book, you get two servants for the price of one! This is a collection of memories from working women who were members of the Women’s Co-operative Guild. The two servants are Mrs. Layton (chapter titled "Memories of Seventy Years") and Mrs. Wrigley (chapter title "A Plate-Layer’s Wife"). Mrs. Wrigley’s recollections of domestic service only span three pages, but she describes her first place, aged nine, as a servant-of-all-work in heart-breaking detail. Mrs. Layton describes ten years in service from the age of ten with some kind (and not so kind) employers. After her marriage, she became a midwife. 

Life as We Have Known It

By Co-operative Women’s Guild, Margaret Llewelyn Davies (editor),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Life as We Have Known It as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

“You unlocked a drawer and took out a packet of papers. . . . Sometimes, you said, you got a letter which you could not bring yourself to burn; once or twice a Guildswoman had at your suggestion written a few pages about her life . . .” ―Virginia Woolf to Margaret Llewelyn Davies, describing the circumstances leading to the publication of Life as We Have Known It

A first-hand record of working class women’s experiences in early twentieth-century England, Life as We Have Known It is a unique view of lives Virginia Woolf described as “still half hidden in…


Like One of the Family

By Alice Childress,

Book cover of Like One of the Family

Childress’s novel is a compilation of short pieces originally published serially in two different Black-owned newspapers. In each story, Mildred, a Black domestic worker in New York City, recounts to her friend, Marge, the humorous, infuriating, and all too familiar experiences of working for various white families across the city. She also describes her refusal to remain silent in the face of white employers’ micro-aggressions, outright venom, and fantasies that she’s their loving mammy. Childress’s stories were a powerful salve to the Black household workers and others who first read them in a newspaper. Most of them daily confronted similar situations and worse, but lacked the safety or resources to resist in the same direct ways. 

Like One of the Family

By Alice Childress,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Like One of the Family as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Recommended by Entertainment Weekly

The hilarious, uncompromising novel about African American domestic workers—from a trailblazer in Black women’s literature and now featuring a foreword by Roxane Gay

First published in Paul Robeson’s newspaper, Freedom, and composed of a series of conversations between Mildred, a black domestic, and her friend Marge, Like One of the Family is a wry, incisive portrait of working women in Harlem in the 1950s. Rippling with satire and humor, Mildred’s outspoken accounts vividly capture her white employers’ complacency and condescension—and their startled reactions to a maid who speaks her mind and refuses to exchange dignity for…


The Remains of the Day

By Kazuo Ishiguro,

Book cover of The Remains of the Day

Take everything you know about British Empire—its royal traditions, its stiff-upper-lip haughtiness, its unflappable sense of superiority—and cram it into the character of a nearly-irrelevant, self-deluded yet heartbreakingly sympathetic butler named Stevens, whose comical misadventures lead us from an outdated British manor house across the spectacular countryside of England in his search to recapture a romance that (spoiler) may never have actually been. Kazuo Ishiguro employs the ultimate “unreliable narrator” to poke fun at the British class system; in the process he creates an opera buffo that plays against the haunting rural beauty of that sceptered isle. For my money, it’s a better taste of England than all the tea in Buckingham Palace. Just sayin’.

The Remains of the Day

By Kazuo Ishiguro,

Why should I read it?

7 authors picked The Remains of the Day as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

*Kazuo Ishiguro's new novel Klara and the Sun is now available to preorder*

The Remains of the Day won the 1989 Booker Prize and cemented Kazuo Ishiguro's place as one of the world's greatest writers. David Lodge, chairman of the judges in 1989, said, it's "a cunningly structured and beautifully paced performance". This is a haunting evocation of lost causes and lost love, and an elegy for England at a time of acute change. Ishiguro's work has been translated into more than forty languages and has sold millions of copies worldwide.

Stevens, the long-serving butler of Darlington Hall, embarks on…


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