The Hatmaker’s Gift

The Hatmaker’s Gift


Willington Place, London, 1879.

In London's bustling streets, business is booming for Mabel Arkwright's hat shop. But as her health declines, she must entrust Emily Pearson, her capable and beloved employee, with more responsibility.

After Mabel's death, Emily is stunned not only to inherit a completely unique broad-brimmed straw hat, but also the shop. But it isn't long before the extra work leaves Emily on the brink of exhaustion. Resolving to get some rest, she takes a trip to the south of France.

There, she meets the stylish and enigmatic Paul Anderson Steerman who is instantly captivated by Emily's beautiful straw hat and sweeps her off her feet. But when they return to England to start their life together, it soon becomes clear that Paul isn't the man he claims to be. Can Emily free herself from his clutches or is it too late...?


From bestselling saga author Catherine Cookson, this forgotten classic is an epic tale of friendship, love and betrayal. If you like Dilly Court, Katie Flynn or Donna Douglas, you'll love Catherine Cookson.

Previously published as The Golden Straw

About the author

Catherine Cookson

Catherine Cookson was born in Tyne Dock, the illegitimate daughter of a poverty-stricken woman, Kate, whom she believed to be her older sister. She began work in service but eventually moved south to Hastings, where she met and married Tom Cookson, a local grammar-school master. Although she was originally acclaimed as a regional writer - her novel The Round Tower won the Winifred Holtby Award for the best regional novel of 1968 - her readership quickly spread throughout the world, and her many best-selling novels established her as one of the most popular of contemporary women novelists. After receiving an OBE in 1985, Catherine Cookson was created a Dame of the British Empire in 1993. She was appointed an Honorary Fellow of St Hilda's College, Oxford, in 1997. For many years she lived near Newcastle upon Tyne. She died shortly before her ninety-second birthday, in June 1998.
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