(On Cane Hill Hospital)
"I have found the book totally fascinating and the hard work and detail and research you have put in has been amazing…I enjoyed some of the accounts of the care and treatment and events that took place in the early 1900s! It has really put some greater understanding in my mind to the historical background.
Many thanks for a wonderful read"
Michael Bennett (Team Manager)
(On Salt & Silk)
“You have really caught the character of the self important males and the longsuffering females and the general uncertainty of the times. I am truly admiring of your work and you set the scene so well at the outset to bring the people back to life.
It is so unusual too because we know they really lived and were buffeted by the events you describe so it is more compelling somehow than a novel and the very fact that their lives were ordinary brings them back readily to relate to us. I shall be recommending it this Christmas!”
Eileen Pembridge (Co-founder & Senior Partner of UK’s foremost family law firm, Fisher Meredith)
“I have finished reading Salt & Silk, and had to write to say how much I have enjoyed it, and how much I miss the irascible old Herbert Aubrey II. The treatment of using the first person has certainly worked, and you have managed to immerse the reader in the past. I’m eagerly awaiting Part Two. This is a brief letter because I wanted to say how much I enjoyed the book and how impressed I am with your scholarship.”
Diana White (Author & Editor)
“Salt & Silk is a great page-turner, and introducing the technique of dialogue enhanced the drama. It imbued the tale with authenticity. Enjoyable and very well-researched – recorded history brought to life!”
Jennifer Jackson (Librarian)
"I have just finished reading Salt & Silk. At first I thought I would just be dipping into it, but in fact I found it fascinating and read it right through from beginning to end. You have certainly managed to capture the spirit of the times in your "interpretation".
As far as I could tell, everything was accurately portrayed in terms of the bigger events which occurred in your characters' lifetimes.
I think their reactions to these events are exactly how some people must have felt at the time. I was particularly struck by the way in which your characters felt so deeply about matters concerning religion and royalty, and I am sure that this was common in those days. I have seen some of these events through the eyes of people whom I have researched in connection with my own collection, and recognise much of what your own characters feel.
One of the most impressive features of your book is the way it draws on real family relationships and connections. Again this was typical of the times: as you know, many business relationships were founded on kinship, even though this might only be between "cousins". People must have kept track of their families, including distant branches, in exactly the way you imagine. I also like the way your characters sometimes bear grudges from distant events, in a very realistic way.
The amount of research work which lies behind the book must have been enormous, and I should like to congratulate you and your helper, Pam, warmly on these efforts and on your great achievement of digesting the research and making the results so accessible. The book tells family history in a most readable and believeable manner, and is very enjoyable. For any reader who is not familiar with the period, the book must also be extremely educational."
Chris Lewin (Historian of Pensions and Insurance)
"Congratulations on your new book! It is immaculately produced, and fascinating in its content. Well done to Pam too, on both this and her book on Liss.
Salt & Silk and now Silk & Sons are family histories with a difference….They're just the sort of people who make fascinating ancestors - not too wealthy to have been studied-to-death already, yet well-off enough to have left a good paper-trail that enables the dogged researcher to reconstruct their lives in considerable detail.
The author is clear in her introduction that many of the thoughts of her characters are inferred, so there is no real scope for confusion (or conflict) between what is hard fact, and what isn't. And as an evocation of land gentry family life in the 17th and 18th centuries it has a very great deal to commend it.
Even if the Aubreys are not your forebears, this book shows how it is possible to make ancestors spring up from the dusty records and come back to life in the mind."
Anthony Adolph (Author and Genealogist)
"………and to congratulate you on its readability and interest. As with the previous Aubrey work, it combines documentation and imaginative reconstruction in a palatable blend. So I look forward to the sequel! "
Roland Thorne (Historian and Editor of the History of Parliament 1780-1820)
Whatever law firms may decide to do individual arts sponsorship by lawyers is alive and well.
For example, my Bank Holiday reading was a fascinating book about the 500-year-history of Lyss Place in Hampshire, owned until recently by Tony Williams, the former managing partner of Clifford Chance and now very much the consultant-about-the-City through his firm Jomati.
The detailed research for the book, written by Pam Buttrey, a local historian, had been backed by Tony Williams in the interests of good scholarship. Let’s hope other leading lawyers will follow his example."
Edward Fennell The Times May 28, 2009
"I'd like to say how much I enjoyed Silk & Sons. I went back first and re-read the second half of Salt & Silk to get me up to speed with the earlier generations and the personalities around them. I feel I know them all personally now as you bring them to life with such apparent ease.
These books are particularly interesting for an Aubrey, but also a fascinating social history, as you describe the events and times so as to make the reader seem like a fly on the wall. I hated history at school and ignored it, but my forays into genealogy have now awakened an ardent interest in social history, and I can't wait for the next chapter in the Aubrey succession."
Steve Aubrey, Property Developer
(On Survival of a Bomber Command Pilot)
"Just wanted to let you know I have just completed reading Survival of a Bomber Command Pilot. What a fascinating read. My congratulations.
I`m sure there will be many more who are interested in reading about this part of our history. Best wishes Margaret."
Margaret I Henry (Retired Lecturer in Teacher Education).