You are a woman, and must begin to live like one. By which I mean: have courage.

Summary – An unconventional Victorian widow visits an Essex village terrorised by a bloodthirsty serpent.

The Perfect Drink – This is a cold book full of tea drinking scenes – get yourself a big, steaming mug of English Breakfast tea to warm you up and steady your nerves. Ideally it should be drunk from a blue mug, for reasons that will become clear as you read!

The Perfect SnackCora is unashamed about her appetite – it’s one of the things that marks her out as different to traditionally delicate Victorian women. We would recommend cake, just like Charles orders in the inn. Something indulgent, but with a citrus tang. A lime and ginger cake would work well – fiery ginger for Cora and sharp lime to cut, serpent-like, through the more homely flavours.

The Perfect Place – This is a fireside read, wintery and chilling.

How would you read The Essex Serpent? Let us know in the comments below! We’d love to hear from you.