The Confessions of Frannie Langton by Sara Collins – Review

TitleThe Confessions of Frannie Langton

Author: Sara Collins

Genre: Historical Fiction

Publisher: Viking

Publication Date: 4th April 2019


Summary: from Amazon

‘They say I must be put to death for what happened to Madame, and they want me to confess. But how can I confess what I don’t believe I’ve done?’

1826, and all of London is in a frenzy. Crowds gather at the gates of the Old Bailey to watch as Frannie Langton, maid to Mr and Mrs Benham, goes on trial for their murder. The testimonies against her are damning – slave, whore, seductress. And they may be the truth. But they are not the whole truth.

For the first time Frannie must tell her story. It begins with a girl learning to read on a plantation in Jamaica, and it ends in a grand house in London, where a beautiful woman waits to be freed.

But through her fevered confessions, one burning question haunts Frannie Langton: could she have murdered the only person she ever loved?


I was immediately drawn to this book because of the gorgeous cover and because the story sounded so fascinating – and it didn’t disappoint. The first thing that has to be said about The Confessions of Frannie Langton is that the prose is simply stunning. I have to be honest and say that sometimes extremely descriptive or flowery language in books can get on my nerves a bit because I think it can detract from the story or feel unnecessary. However, in this book the language was so skilfully used as if Collins had genuinely deeply considered every word she has written and it paid off big time. Frannie’s voice in this novel is so sharp, enigmatic, strong, at times harsh even and she feels completely like a real, conflicted person who will make such an impression on the reader.

It took me a little while to get totally immersed in Frannie’s world but once I was, I was hooked. I had to know what was going to happen to her and why she ended up in the position she is in. This is not a clear cut story of heroes and villains in the direct sense, there are shades of grey in almost every character and Collins has done a fantastic job creating relationships full of complexity and intrigue. I came away from reading this book feeling like I had read something written by a truly talented author and I can’t wait to read whatever she writes next. The Confessions of Frannie Langton is full of intelligence, wit, anger and the intricacies and dangers of love and hate. I highly recommend it.


The Confessions of Frannie Langton

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