Heart of Cruelty (Maybelle Wallis)

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A work of epic historical fiction by Dr Maybelle Wallis, a pediatrician in Wexford General Hospital.

A forbidden love illuminates an unbearable truth.

1840

Jane Verity's dream of a romantic life in the theatre ends in the workhouse, where she is subjected to violent abuse.

When Coroner William Doughty rescues her on his way to an inquest on a young inmate who committed suicide, it alters the path of his life. Powerfully attracted to her, he employs her as his maidservant, to care for his ailing wife.

In his household, Jane discovers the truth about the inquest and pieces together the dark secrets of a powerful abuser. As Doughty struggles with his passion for her, she must convince him to act, even though exposing the truth will destroy his marriage and his career.

The twisting darkness of this story pervades a bittersweet romance and explores the risks of allowing desire to triumph over reason.