All the pomp. All the ceremony. All the catastrophe. Meet the Chettle sisters, a royal disaster in waiting.
Nineteen-year-old identical twins Violet and Daisie Chettle can hardly believe their luck when they are recruited as maids to accompany the Queen's Lady-in-Waiting on the royal tour to Australia in 1954. It's just the ticket they need away from cold, grey England and the tension that's been brewing at home since the loss of their parents.
However, life on board the SS Gothic and indeed in the colony is far from the glamorous adventure they expected, and their relationship becomes even more strained when one twin discovers her sister's unconscionable act of betrayal.
As they travel from the bustling streets of Sydney to the remote sheep stations of Dubbo, they try to make the best of it. Diligent Violet is juggling commands from her superiors with the attentions of handsome Aussie driver Jack, while ambitious Daisie seeks love in all the wrong places while clawing her way to top deck. An opportunity to meet their estranged aunt living in the vast outback promises hope for a new future - but have these girls ventured too far from home to ever find their way back?
Based around one of the biggest true events in Australian history - the 1954 royal tour by the newly crowned Queen Elizabeth II - this is a wickedly entertaining novel about the rifts and rivalries that can be found in every family, Royal or not.
'This is a little gem for anyone who loves the pomp, ceremony, gossip, dramas and rivalries of a royal tour.' Herald Sun
'The Tour is good fun - a gossipy, behind-the-scenes romp featuring vivid dialogue and characters, set in a bygone Australia.' The Age
'An entertaining historical read with a royal twist.' New Idea
Publication Date: 02-Feb-2021
Publisher: Penguin Random House