Historical fiction set in eighteenth century Scotland. A haunting, passionate tale of a beautiful, promiscuous woman accused of infanticide.
Will she pay the ultimate price for her debauchery?
In an age when women are expected to know their place, be submissive, dutiful and chaste, Maggie Dickson, a Musselburgh fishwife, is often in trouble. She’s outspoken, promiscuous and vituperative. While her husband’s at sea she sells her fish, sleeps with men for pleasure or money, and looks after her two bairns. After her husband is press-ganged, Maggie quits Musselburgh and heads for Newcastle to stay with relatives.
During the winter of 1723, a fisherman finds the dead body of a naked, baby boy. Fingers are soon pointing in the direction of a stranger working in a local tavern, a woman recently estranged from her mariner husband. It is rumoured that she’s been having a passionate affair with the innkeeper’s young son, William Bell, and that he is the father of the dead child.
Maggie is arrested and taken to Edinburgh tollbooth to await trial, she is found guilty and sentenced to death. The news spreads like wildfire, and as Maggie languishes in jail the whole city speculates whether or not she killed her child. Will she take her secret to her grave?
The Hanging of Maggie Dickson is a heartrending tale of obsession, and unrequited love.