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The Fitzgeralds of Dublin Series

A Scarlet Woman by Lorna Peel eBook Cover
As I publish each book in The Fitzgeralds of Dublin Series  I’ll be adding blog posts with character profiles, location histories and general background information. Below, I’ve listed all the posts so far and categorised them so they are easier to locate. All the posts contain an excerpt from the books. You can subscribe to my blog by clicking the Follow button or the RSS Blog Feed Reader link in the sidebar on the right so you won’t miss a post. The Books   Book One:   A Scarlet Woman Can an idealistic young doctor and a fallen woman find love when Victorian society believes they should not?   Book Two:   A Suitable Wife Can Will and Isobel hold the Fitzgeralds together when tragedy and be...
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Only You Is Out Now!

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“Only You by Lorna Peel is a fabulous romance about trust in relationships under a microscope.”  Victoria at   The Romance Reviews Jane Hollinger is divorced and the wrong side of thirty – as she puts it. Her friends are pressuring her to dive back into London’s dating pool, but she’s content with her quiet life teaching family history evening classes.  Robert Armstrong is every woman’s fantasy: handsome, charming, rich and famous. When he asks her to meet him, she convinces herself it’s because he needs her help with a mystery in his family tree. Soon she realises he’s interested in more than her genealogy expertise. Now the paparazzi want a piece of Jane, too.  Can Jane handle living — and...
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The Seasoned Romance Sale

Seasoned Romance Sale Graphic
Seasoned romance is a romance featuring heroes and heroines in their 30s, 40s, 50s and beyond and from April 10 to April 12, seasoned romance authors are offering their best romances for 99cents. Visit  seasonedromances.com  for a full list of the books on sale. My seasoned romance A Summer of Secrets will also be on sale across Amazon for just 99cents or 99p . A manor house mystery romance crackling with sexual tension, family secrets and ancestral intrigue. Sophia Nelson   returns to her hometown in Yorkshire, England to begin a new job as tour guide at Heaton Abbey House . There, she meets the reclusive   Thomas, Baron Heaton , a lonely workaholic. Despite having a rule never to become in...
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Meet A Suitable Wife’s Sarah Fitzgerald

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Sarah Fitzgerald, née Crawford, was born in 1824 in York Street, Dublin, Ireland the second of three daughters. Sarah’s father, William, was the son of a draper from Parliament Street and became a surgeon at Mercer’s Hospital through hard work and stubborn determination on both his part and his father’s. Draper Crawford had to ensure he earned enough to keep his family fed and clothed and ensure William had the means to be bound as an apprentice to a prominent surgeon. Continually reminded that he has ‘come from trade’ by certain sections of Dublin society, Surgeon Crawford wanted Sarah to marry well. His former apprentice, Duncan Simpson, had married Maria Wingfield of Rutland Square (now P...
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Meet A Suitable Wife’s John Fitzgerald

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Will Fitzgerald’s father, John, was born at number 67 Merrion Square, Dublin, Ireland in 1814, the eldest son of Dr Edward Fitzgerald and his wife Mary Jane neé Maquay. John’s younger brother Thomas died at a year old. John met Duncan Simpson at the ‘Seminary for General Education’, a school run by the Reverend R.H. Wall at number 6 Hume Street. They became best friends but John followed Fitzgerald family tradition that the eldest son study medicine at Trinity College. Duncan was bound as an apprentice to William Crawford, a surgeon at Mercer’s Hospital while also studying at the private school of anatomy, medicine, and surgery in Park Street (now Lincoln Place) before receiving his letters ...
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Meet A Suitable Wife’s Fred Simpson

Fred Simpson
Frederick (Fred) Simpson was born in December 1849 at number 1 Ely Place Upper, Dublin, Ireland, the only son of Duncan Simpson, a renowned surgeon, and his wife, Maria. Duncan Simpson and Dr Will Fitzgerald’s father, Dr John Fitzgerald were best friends and Fred and Will also became best friends. Fred and Will attended the Weslyan Connexional School (now known as Wesley College) where they became friends with Jeremiah (Jerry) Hawley from Kingstown (now Dun Laoghaire). Instead of becoming a surgeon like his father, Fred studied medicine at Trinity College Dublin with Will and Jerry. On graduating, Jerry moved to London and set up practice there, Will set up a practice in the Liberties area o...
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Meet A Suitable Wife’s Margaret Simpson

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Margaret Simpson, née Dawson, was born on Dame Street, Dublin, Ireland in 1857, the younger daughter of the late Nicholas Dawson and his wife. Nicholas Dawson was a solicitor and his offices at street level are now leased to a law firm while his widow lives alone on the floors above. Having been in love with Dr Fred Simpson since seeing him at a church service when she was sixteen, Margaret can’t believe her luck when they marry in July 1880 and she moves to number 1 Ely Place Upper. In December 1880, Fred’s surgeon father, Duncan Simpson, dies suddenly and Fred’s mother, Maria, moves out and goes to live with her spinster sister, Diana Wingfield, on Rutland Square. Margaret is now mistress ...
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Fitzwilliam Square

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Fitzwilliam Square is a Georgian garden square named after the Fitzwilliam family, Earls of Merrion, who urbanised the land as part of their great estate on the south side of the River Liffey in Dublin, Ireland. The square was managed and developed by Richard Fitzwilliam, 7th Viscount Fitzwilliam and was laid out in 1792. The centre of the square was enclosed in 1813 through an Act of Parliament. The Hon. Richard Fitzwilliam, 7th Viscount Fitzwilliam of Merrion The square comprises a central garden, surrounded by four streets – Fitzwilliam Square North, East, West and South. There are 69 houses with 17 houses in the north, west and east sides and 18 houses on the south side. All four sides o...
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The Great Snow of January 1881

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2018 has been a year of weather extremes in Ireland. As well as a heatwave in July, Dublin had two ‘snow events’ in February and March 2018. The first was the ‘Beast From The East’ and it was followed by the ‘Mini Beast From The East’. But in January 1881, Dublin also went through a snowstorm of intense severity. Satellite view showing Europe partially covered in snow under the influence of the anticyclonic cold wave named Hartmut or the “Beast from the East” on 27 February 2018 January 1881 began with a high pressure system to the south of Ireland and Great Britain with a westerly/south-westerly air flow. The weather turned much colder as the high pressure drifted towards Greenland around J...
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A Suitable Wife: Available to Pre-order

A Suitable Wife by Lorna Peel Kindle Cover
Dublin, Ireland, 1881.  Will and Isobel Fitzgerald settle into number 30 Fitzwilliam Square, a home they could once only have dreamed of. A baby is on the way, Will takes over the Merrion Street Upper medical practice from his father and they are financially secure. But when Will is handed a letter from his elder brother, Edward, stationed with the army in India, the revelations it contains only serves to further alienate Will from his father. Isobel is eager to adapt to married life on Fitzwilliam Square but soon realises her past can never be laid to rest. The night she met Will in a brothel on the eve of his best friend’s wedding has devastating and far-reaching consequences which will ch...
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Meet A Scarlet Woman’s Isobel Stevens

Copyright Watts Gallery / Supplied by The Public Catalogue Foundation
Isobel Stevens is twenty-two years old. She was born in County Galway, Ireland, the youngest of two children of the Reverend Edmund Stevens, a Church of Ireland (Anglican) clergyman, and his wife, Martha. Her parents’ marriage was an unhappy one. Reverend Stevens was a cruel and vindictive man who beat, not only his wife but his children, too. Despite his cruelty, Reverend Stevens wanted what was best for his children. Both Isobel and her elder brother, Alfie, were well-educated. Alfie was sent to Harrow public school in London, England while at the age of twelve, Isobel was sent to Cheltenham Ladies College in Gloucestershire, England. With Isobel’s beauty and education, Reverend Stevens ho...
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Monto: Dublin’s Red Light District


Click the map to open it in new window/tab in a larger size Monto is the nickname for Dublin ’s red light district derived from Montgomery Street, now named Foley Street. Monto encompassed an area bounded by Talbot Street, Amiens Street, Gardiner Street and Gloucester Street (now Sean McDermott Street). Between the 1860s and the 1920s, Monto was reputed to be the largest red light district in Europe and, according to popular legend, the then Prince of Wales, Prince Edward (later King Edward VII), lost his virginity there. Montgomery Street Monto emerged as a red light district in the mid-to-late nineteenth century. In the 1860s and 1870s, prostitution in Dublin had centered on the fashionabl...
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Available Now: A Scarlet Woman: The Fitzgeralds of Dublin Book One

A Scarlet Woman by Lorna Peel eBook Cover
I’m delighted to announce the publication of my Irish historical romance A Scarlet Woman: The Fitzgeralds of Dublin Book One  in ebook and paperback. Dublin, Ireland, 1880.  Tired of treating rich hypochondriacs, Dr Will Fitzgerald left his father’s medical practice and his home on Merrion Square to live and practice medicine in the Liberties. His parents were appalled and his fiancée broke off their engagement. But when Will spends a night in a brothel on the eve of his best friend’s wedding, little does he know that the scarred and disgraced young woman he meets there will alter the course of his life. Isobel Stevens was schooled to be a lady, but a seduction put an end to all her father’s...
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Meet Brotherly Love’s Caitriona Brady

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Caitriona Brady is twenty-six years old and is the widow of John Brady, the Brady champion who was killed in a faction fight two years ago. Caitriona and John were brought together by a local matchmaker and Caitriona was eighteen when she left her home in Dunmore Parish, married John, and began a life in a cottage on fifteen acres of rented land on a mountain in the remote parish of Doon. Caitriona and John had no children and, after John’s death, Caitriona nursed John’s elderly mother until Bridget died. Finally her own mistress, Caitriona wants to make the most of her new found freedom. She wants to choose a husband this time and not have the decision made for her. Michael Warner is new to...
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Meet Brotherly Love’s Michael Warner

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Michael Warner is twenty-eight years old. One of four siblings, he and his elder brother, Liam , are the only two who lived to adulthood. He was born and brought up on a large farm and, like Liam, Michael was well educated. He can read and write in both Irish and English. Michael and Liam have lived in a cottage outside the village of Doon for just over a year where they rent and farm fifteen acres of good land. Although Liam helps him at the busiest times of the year – saving the hay and the turf (peat) – Michael does the bulk of the farm work himself. But why did Michael choose to be a farmer in the first place? With his education, Michael could have had the choice of many careers. Any new...
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Meet Brotherly Love’s Liam Warner

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Father Liam Warner is forty years old and is the eldest surviving child of four siblings. Liam studied for the priesthood at Maynooth College, County Kildare, which is just outside Dublin. He was the first in his family to become a priest and his mother worked herself into an early grave, taking in washing and sewing, and selling her butter, eggs, and bread at the local market in an effort to be able to afford to send him there. Liam and his brother, Michael , have lived just outside the village of Doon for the past year where they rent and farm fifteen acres of good land. In 1831, Ireland had a population of 7,767,401 and with Roman Catholicism being the largest religion by far, the fees pa...
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Irish Holy Wells

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Holy wells are places of religious devotion where people come to pray and leave simple offerings. The surviving names of many wells are a direct translation into English of the equivalent in Irish and the term for holy well in Irish is either Tobar Beannaithe, literally meaning ‘holy well’, or Tobar Naofa, meaning ‘saintly well’. The healing power of water is recorded in the earliest sagas and holy wells were pagan sacred sites which became christianised and the legends associated with the wells were incorporated into the lives of Irish saints. These wells then became the focal point for the celebration of the ‘patron’ or saint associated with a parish or townland. Many legends relating to a...
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Pattern Day in Ireland

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An Irish ‘Patern’ at Balla County Mayo – The ‘Long station’, engraved by Eugène Froment, in The Graphic 11 (23 January 1875). The word pattern is derived from the Irish Patrun or English Patron and most Irish parishes had a patron saint. On the saint’s feast day, parishioners celebrated what was known as a Pattern Day at a holy well or another holy site. Devotions at holy wells began with making what was called ‘the rounds.’ The people would walk around the well a certain number of times while saying special prayers. Part of the ritual included drinking the water and bathing with it. It was thought that water from a holy well had healing powers and some wells became famous for curing specifi...
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Sticks and Stones: What is Faction Fighting?

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  The Party Fight and Funeral (Carleton’s Irish Peasantry by William Carleton, George Routledge & Co, 1854) Faction fights were mass brawls at Irish fairs, markets, funerals, race meetings, and patterns ( parish patron saints days ) between hundreds, sometimes thousands, of people – usually families or parishes or estate tenants – whose weapons were usually sticks and stones. The fights often resulted in the deaths of one or more of the participants, and always resulted in maiming and injury. The tradition descended from one generation to the next as did the leadership of each faction. Reasons for fighting ranged from a desire to display a family’s strength, conflicts over non-payment of dow...
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Meet New Blood’s Sophia Nelson

Sophia Nelson from contemporary romance new blood by lorna peel
Thirty-three year old Sophia Nelson is about to start work as tour guide at Heaton Abbey House, a stately home and former Cistercian Abbey in Yorkshire, England. She returned to her home town six months previously to be closer to her ageing parents, working for a short time at the town’s mining museum before a suspicious fire burned it to the ground. Her mother has dementia, suffered a stroke, and lives in a local care home. When her father fell and badly broke his arm, he couldn’t live on his own anymore, so he sold the family home and moved into sheltered accommodation. Sophia slept on her father’s sofa for a short time before her best friend, Michelle, offered Sophia the bed in her loft c...
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