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Gilding the Lily

A heartrending tale of two sisters and their quest for a place to belong, from much-loved author Rita Bradshaw.

Lily and Sarah Brown's childhood is an unhappy one.  Sarah escapes by marrying Ralph Turner, a Sunderland dock worker, but Lily doesn't trust Ralph - a dark volatile man with a hidden cruel streak.  When he tries to seduce Lily on his wedding day, her worst fears are confirmed. Ralph's younger brother John is cut from a different cloth, though, and Lily is increasingly drawn to him.  But just when Lily sees a future for them, a terrible incident destroys her happiness.  Heartbroken, Lily agrees to accompany the family she works for as a nursemaid to New York.  As Lily boards RMS Titanic little does she realise that her decision will change the course of her life for ever...

Important places

Sunderland (13)


Sunderland (17)


United Kingdom (21,421)