Fiona Mitchell - The Maid's Room - Hodder & Stoughton

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  • Paperback £8.99
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    • ISBN:9781473659599
    • Publication date:19 Apr 2018
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    • ISBN:9781473659582
    • Publication date:16 Nov 2017

The Maid's Room

'A modern-day The Help' - Emerald Street

By Fiona Mitchell

  • Hardback
  • £16.99

For readers of The Help and The Invention of Wings, a searing and sweeping debut novel that gives a new and unforgettable perspective on modern day domestic workers.

'A modern-day The Help' - Emerald Street

'It's a book to read and then read again.' The Book Bag

'I loved The Maid's Room with its exquisite writing, married with a shocking and powerful story line that had me gripped and moved until the uplifting conclusion.' Katie Marsh, author of A Life Without You and This Beautiful Life

'A beautifully written and deeply moving novel . . . crafted with a mixture of grim detail, dark humour and poignancy, at times it's hard to believe that this book is a work of fiction. Genuinely excellent. *****' Heat

******

'This is where she sleeps. A cupboard. A bedroom. A windowless box.'

Sisters Dolly and Tala have never felt further from home. In the blistering heat of Singapore, they spend their days enabling ex-pats to have lives they could never afford for themselves.

Even though she has little freedom, Dolly can just about live with her job if it means she's able to support her beloved young daughter back in the Philippines. One day - if she's lucky - Dolly may even be able to go back and see her.

Tala, however, just can't keep her mouth shut about the restrictive, archaic rules maids are forced to abide by on pain of deportation. She risks everything to help her fellow maids, who have struggled to have their voices heard for far too long.

In a world where domestic workers are treated so poorly, The Maid's Room explores how women can come together to change each other's lives, and be the architects of their own futures.

Biographical Notes

This is Fiona Mitchell's first novel. Inspired by the author's own experience of life in Singapore and extensive research, it is an eye-opening novel about life as a maid; a universal issue affecting us all. There are now 230,000 female domestic workers in Singapore and an estimated 53 million people working as domestic helpers across the globe - a quarter of these are afforded no legal rights at all.

  • Other details

  • ISBN: 9781473659568
  • Publication date: 16 Nov 2017
  • Page count: 320
  • Imprint: Hodder & Stoughton
A modern-day The Help — Emerald Street
Passionate . . . This powerful novel is pretty bleak, but there are sunny patches and plenty of breezy satire. It paints an unforgettable picture of how, in the here and now, some haves can treat the have-nots. You'll be rooting for feisty Tala all the way — Daily Mail
A beautifully written and deeply moving novel . . . crafted with a mixture of grim detail, dark humour and poignancy, at times it's hard to believe that this book is a work of fiction. Genuinely excellent. ***** — Heat
Heartbreaking but uplifting read — Candis
A brilliant and eye-opening read — Prima
It's informative, but there's a darned good story there too. I was completely tied up in the mystery of which of the employers was writing the blog detailing all the ways you should keep your servant in check and my heart was in my mouth for Tala and Dolly on more than one occasion. It's a book to read and then read again so that you can appreciate all the nuances. — The Book Bag
Fiona Mitchell's debut lifts the lid on life as a female domestic worker in Singapore . . . Touching — Grazia
I loved The Maid's Room with its exquisite writing, married with a shocking and powerful story line that had me gripped and moved until the uplifting conclusion. A fascinating read about survival and the strength and resilience of the human heart. — Katie Marsh, author of A LIFE WITHOUT YOU and THIS BEAUTIFUL LIFE
A beautifully written debut that's both moving and humorous with characters I truly cared about. I loved everything about it! — Claire Douglas, Sunday Times bestselling author of LOCAL GIRL MISSING and LAST SEEN ALIVE
The Maid's Room pulls no punches in bringing home the message that migrant workers are treated shockingly, but also recognises that the women employing these maids are often living unhappy lives too, albeit in the luxury their money provides . . . there is humour in the book and uplifting moments which restore some faith in human nature. Essentially though this is a book with a strong message about the exploitation of migrant workers, which will leave you questioning the way the rich treat the poor. — On Magazine
A fascinating, thought-provoking and sometimes heart-breaking look at the wealthy ex-pat lifestyle in Singapore and the exploited women who look after the children, take care of the expensive homes and live in tiny rooms along with the cleaning supplies. — Red Magazine
The Maid's Room is a book brimming with hope, kindness and humour. Sad yet joyous, shocking yet compelling. A sharp, truthful and exquisitely told tale. I loved it - I think everyone should read this book! — Ronnie Turner Book Blog
Mitchell's background in journalism gives her characters an authentic voice and the writing style is both informative and compelling. It is a book that deals with some difficult issues, but there is also plenty of humour along the way, and a feeling of hope that makes it both heartbreaking and uplifting . . . [The Maid's Room] had me gripped and also opened my eyes to the struggles faced by domestic workers in Singapore and around the world. — The Owl on the Bookshelf Blog
The Maid's Room by Fiona Mitchell is a stunning debut, rich in detail, drawn from the shadows of modern-day slavery in Singapore . . . The perfect read for the coming winter nights. — Ruby Speechley Book Blog
This is an insight into expat life that I wasn't expecting . . . The tone may be light, but the message is not. — The Pool
Debut novelist Mitchell makes a serious point about the where the boundaries of modern slavery lie but it's also a book suffused with joyful, lighter moments. Dolly and Tala are vibrantly drawn and it's so evocative of the stifling humidity of the city, you'll need a shower afterwards. — Muddy Stilettos
From the moment you start reading this novel comparisons with The Help are inevitable . . . The story is well put together with some compelling characters . . . It is a story that needs to be told and I do hope as many people as possible read it. — Bookphace
The details are shocking, but there's laughter and inspiration to be found here, too — Good Housekeeping
The detail is what makes this one shine and despite the topic, it is an exhilarating and hopeful read. A promising debut — Image Magazine
An unflinching tale of class divide hits hard . . . There are parallels to The Help by Kathryn Stockett . . . This book, though, is set in the current century, which makes the world it describes all the more shocking . . . A great novel for book clubs — Nicky Pellegrino, New Zealand Woman's Weekly
British journalist Fiona Mitchell's fiction debut plunges into the claustrophobic existence of foreign domestic workers in Singapore, but injects these difficult stories with heart and humour — Straits Times
A modern-day The Help
Passionate . . . This powerful novel is pretty bleak, but there are sunny patches and plenty of breezy satire. It paints an unforgettable picture of how, in the here and now, some haves can treat the have-nots. You'll be rooting for feisty Tala all the way
A beautifully written and deeply moving novel . . . crafted with a mixture of grim detail, dark humour and poignancy, at times it's hard to believe that this book is a work of fiction. Genuinely excellent. *****
Heartbreaking but uplifting read
A brilliant and eye-opening read
It's informative, but there's a darned good story there too. I was completely tied up in the mystery of which of the employers was writing the blog detailing all the ways you should keep your servant in check and my heart was in my mouth for Tala and Dolly on more than one occasion. It's a book to read and then read again so that you can appreciate all the nuances.
Fiona Mitchell's debut lifts the lid on life as a female domestic worker in Singapore . . . Touching
I loved The Maid's Room with its exquisite writing, married with a shocking and powerful story line that had me gripped and moved until the uplifting conclusion. A fascinating read about survival and the strength and resilience of the human heart.
A beautifully written debut that's both moving and humorous with characters I truly cared about. I loved everything about it!
The Maid's Room pulls no punches in bringing home the message that migrant workers are treated shockingly, but also recognises that the women employing these maids are often living unhappy lives too, albeit in the luxury their money provides . . . there is humour in the book and uplifting moments which restore some faith in human nature. Essentially though this is a book with a strong message about the exploitation of migrant workers, which will leave you questioning the way the rich treat the poor.
A fascinating, thought-provoking and sometimes heart-breaking look at the wealthy ex-pat lifestyle in Singapore and the exploited women who look after the children, take care of the expensive homes and live in tiny rooms along with the cleaning supplies.
The Maid's Room is a book brimming with hope, kindness and humour. Sad yet joyous, shocking yet compelling. A sharp, truthful and exquisitely told tale. I loved it - I think everyone should read this book!
Mitchell's background in journalism gives her characters an authentic voice and the writing style is both informative and compelling. It is a book that deals with some difficult issues, but there is also plenty of humour along the way, and a feeling of hope that makes it both heartbreaking and uplifting . . . [The Maid's Room] had me gripped and also opened my eyes to the struggles faced by domestic workers in Singapore and around the world.
The Maid's Room by Fiona Mitchell is a stunning debut, rich in detail, drawn from the shadows of modern-day slavery in Singapore . . . The perfect read for the coming winter nights.
This is an insight into expat life that I wasn't expecting . . . The tone may be light, but the message is not.
Debut novelist Mitchell makes a serious point about the where the boundaries of modern slavery lie but it's also a book suffused with joyful, lighter moments. Dolly and Tala are vibrantly drawn and it's so evocative of the stifling humidity of the city, you'll need a shower afterwards.
From the moment you start reading this novel comparisons with The Help are inevitable . . . The story is well put together with some compelling characters . . . It is a story that needs to be told and I do hope as many people as possible read it.
The details are shocking, but there's laughter and inspiration to be found here, too
The detail is what makes this one shine and despite the topic, it is an exhilarating and hopeful read. A promising debut
An unflinching tale of class divide hits hard . . . There are parallels to The Help by Kathryn Stockett . . . This book, though, is set in the current century, which makes the world it describes all the more shocking . . . A great novel for book clubs
British journalist Fiona Mitchell's fiction debut plunges into the claustrophobic existence of foreign domestic workers in Singapore, but injects these difficult stories with heart and humour
Hodder & Stoughton

The Swap

Fiona Mitchell
Authors:
Fiona Mitchell

Alexander Maksik

Alexander Maksik is the author of You Deserve Nothing and A Marker to Measure Drift. His writing has appeared in Best American Nonrequired Reading, Harper's, Tin House, Harvard Review, New York Times Magazine, Salon and Narrative Magazine, among other publications, and has been translated into more than a dozen languages. A graduate of the Iowa Writers' Workshop, he is the recipient of fellowships from the Truman Capote Literary Trust and the Corporation of Yaddo. He has taught at the University of Iowa where he was the Provost's Postgraduate Visiting Writer in Fiction.

Amor Towles

Amor Towles has written fiction which has appeared in The Paris Review. He lives in New York.www.amortowles.comwww.facebook.com/AmorTowles

Andreï Makine

Andreï Makine was born in Krasnoyarsk in Siberia in 1957, but sought asylum in France in 1987. While initially sleeping rough in Paris he was writing his first novel, A HERO'S DAUGHTER, which was eventually published in 1990 after Makine pretended it had been translated from the Russian, since no publisher believed he could have written it in French. With his third novel, ONCE UPON A RIVER LOVE, he was finally published as a 'French' writer, and with his fourth, LE TESTAMENT FRANCAIS, he became the first author to win both of France's top literary prizes, the Prix Goncourt and Prix Médicis. Since then Andreï Makine has written THE CRIME OF OLGA ARBYELINA, REQUIEM FOR THE EAST, A LIFE'S MUSIC, which won the Grand Prix RTL-Lire, THE EARTH AND SKY OF JACQUES DORME, THE WOMAN WHO WAITED, HUMAN LOVE and THE LIFE OF AN UNKNOWN MAN.

Andrew Cowan

Andrew Cowan was born in Corby and educated at the University of East Anglia. Pig, his first novel, won The Sunday Times Young Writer of the Year Award, a Betty Trask Award, the Ruth Hadden Memorial Prize, the Author`s Club First Novel Award and a Scottish Council Book Award. He is also the author of the writing guidebook The Art of Writing and three other novels: Common Ground, Crustaceans and What I Know. He is the Director of the Creative Writing programme at UEA.

Brigid Pasulka

Brigid Pasulka, the descendant of Polish emigrants, first arrived in Krakow in the early 1990s and stayed for a year. It was the first of many visits which would allow her to learn Polish, make lifelong friends and fall in love with the land of her great grandparents. She wrote part of her novel, A Long Long Time Ago and Essentially True in a cafe called Pigeon 3. Brigid lives in Chicago where she teaches English, but returns to Poland often.

Charles Frazier

Charles Frazier grew up in the mountains of North Carolina. COLD MOUNTAIN, his highly acclaimed first novel, was an international bestseller, selling over one million copies and winning the National Book Award in 1997. It was the inspiration for the Oscar-winning film directed by Anthony Minghella and starring Nicole Kidman, Jude Law, and Renee Zellweger.A second novel, THIRTEEN MOONS, was published by Sceptre in 2007 and NIGHTWOODS, Charles' latest novel set in a lakeside town in 1960s North Carolina, was published in September 2011. To find out more, visit Charles' Facebook page www.facebook.com/CharlesFrazierAuthor or follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/Charles_Frazier.

Charlotte Lamb

Charlotte Lamb was Mills & Boon's top-selling author. Her novels have been translated in many languages and are bestsellers around the world. She died in October 2000.

Cynthia Bond

Writer and educator Cynthia Bond has taught writing to homeless and at-risk youth throughout Los Angeles for over fifteen years.She attended Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism, then moved to New York and attended the American Academy of Dramatic Arts. Cynthia acted for many years in New York with the Negro Ensemble Company. A PEN Rosenthal Fellow, Cynthia founded the Blackbird Writing Collective in 2011.At present, Bond teaches therapeutic writing at Paradigm Malibu Adolescent Treatment Center. A native of East Texas, she lives in Los Angeles with her daughter.Ruby, an Oprah Book Club 2.0 pick, is her first novel and it was shortlisted for the 2016 Baileys' Women's Fiction prize.cynthiabond.comfacebook.com/cynthiabondrubytwitter.com/cynthiabond

Daniel Woodrell

Daniel Woodrell was born in the Missouri Ozarks, where he still lives. He left school and enlisted in the Marines the week he turned seventeen, and received his BA at the age of twenty-seven. He also has an MFA from the Iowa Writers' Workshop. He is the author of eight novels including Winter's Bone, the film of which was nominated for four Oscars in 2011, Woe to Live On, the basis for the film Ride with the Devil directed by Ang Lee, and Tomato Red, which won the PEN West Award for fiction in 1999. Five of his novels have been selected as New York Times Notable Books of the year. His most recent novel was The Maid's Version, published by Sceptre in 2013.

Edward Kelsey Moore

Edward Kelsey Moore lives in Chicago with his partner of many years. Having trained with some of the world's finest musicians, he has travelled widely and recorded extensively during his lengthy career as a professional cellist. Edward's literary work often reflects both his life as a musician and his upbringing as the backsliding son of a Baptist preacher. His short fiction has appeared in several literary magazines and on Public Radio. Like Dora in THE SUPREMES AT EARL'S ALL-YOU-CAN-EAT, Edward is also an avid gardener; like Odette, his horticultural projects are not always successful. THE SUPREMES AT EARL'S ALL-YOU-CAN-EAT is Edward Kelsey Moore's first novel. Find out more on Edward's website at www.edwardkelseymoore.com or Facebook page www.facebook.com/EdwardKelseyMooreauthor and follow him on Twitter @edkmoore.

Elizabeth H. Winthrop

Elizabeth H. Winthrop was born and raised in New York City. She graduated from Harvard University in 2001 with a BA in English and American Literature and Language, and in 2004 she received her Master of Fine Arts in fiction from the University of California at Irvine. Her stories have appeared in a variety of publications including the Missouri Review and the Indiana Review. Fireworks, her first novel, was published by Sceptre in 2006, and her second, December, was a Richard and Judy Book Club pick for 2009. She lives in Massachusetts with her husband, daughter and St. Bernard.

Fiona McFarlane

Fiona McFarlane was born in Sydney, has a BA from Sydney University and a PhD from Cambridge University, and holds an MFA from the University of Texas at Austin, where she was a Michener Fellow and won the university's prestigious Keene Prize for Literature in 2012. Her work has been published in the New Yorker, Zoetrope: All-Story, Southerly, The Missouri Review, and Best Australian Stories, and she has received fellowships from the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, Phillips Exeter Academy, and the Australia Council for the Arts. Her debut novel, The Night Guest, was published by Sceptre in 2014.

Fran Cooper

Fran Cooper grew up in London before reading English at Cambridge and Art History at the Courtauld Institute of Art. She spent three years in Paris writing a PhD about travelling eighteenth-century artists, and currently works in the curatorial department of a London museum. These Dividing Walls is her first novel.

Fredrik Backman

Fredrik Backman is a Swedish blogger, columnist and author. His debut novel A MAN CALLED OVE was a number 1 bestseller across Scandinavia, has sold over one million copies worldwide, was a Richard & Judy summer read in the UK and an instant New York Times paperback bestseller, and has been made into an acclaimed film. Fredrik's subsequent novels, MY GRANDMOTHER SENDS HER REGARDS AND APOLOGISES and BRITT-MARIE WAS HERE, also went straight to number 1 in Sweden on publication.

George Mackay Brown

George Mackay Brown was one of the greatest Scottish writers of the twentieth century. A prolific poet, admired by such fellow poets as Ted Hughes and Seamus Heaney, he was also an accomplished novelist and a master of the short story. He died at the age of 74 on 13 April 1996.

Grace McCleen

Grace McCleen's first novel, The Land of Decoration, was published in 2012 and was awarded the Desmond Elliott Prize for the best first novel of the year. It was also chosen for Richard & Judy's Book Club and won her the Betty Trask Prize in 2013. Her second novel, The Professor of Poetry, was published by Sceptre in 2013 and was shortlisted for the Encore Award. She read English at the University of Oxford and has an MA from York, and currently lives in London.

Gregory Norminton

Gregory Norminton was born in 1976. He studied at Oxford and trained as an actor. His first novel, THE SHIP OF FOOLS, was published by Sceptre in 2002 and was followed in 2004 by ARTS AND WONDERS, for which he won an Arts Council Writers Award, GHOST PORTRAIT in 2005 and SERIOUS THINGS in 2008.

Irina Ratushinskaya

Born in Odessa, Ukraine in 1954, Irina Ratushinskaya is one of the leading contemporary Russian poets. She married Igor Gerashchenko, a human rights activist, in 1979 and became involved in the human rights movement. She spent four years in a labour camp for 'anti-Soviet agitation and propaganda' where she managed to smuggle out her poems. They were published in the collection No, I'm Not Afraid. After a series of hunger strikes, Irina was released and came to Britain. Her story is told in Grey Is The Colour Of Hope and In The Beginning. She and her husband now live in London.

James Frey

James Frey is originally from Ohio. His books A Million Little Pieces, My Friend Leonard, Bright Shiny Morning and The Final Testament of the Holy Bible have all been bestsellers around the world. He is married and lives in New York.