The long-awaited paperback of Mrs Pankhurst’s Purple Feather is out June 1 2021 with a new cover – and a new title: Etta Lemon, The Woman Who Saved the Birds.
Etta Lemon is the magnificent woman who built the RSPB, growing it from an all-female Victorian tea party to Britain’s largest conservation charity.
She relentlessly called out the cruel fashion for feathers in hats. She fought a running battle with the plumage trade, triumphing with the Plumage Act of 1921. But her legacy has been eclipsed by the more glamorous campaign for the vote, led by the ultra elegant Emmeline Pankhurst.
This gripping narrative explores two formidable heroines and their rival, overlapping campaigns. Moving from the feather workers’ slums to high society, from the first female political rally to the rise of the eco-feminist, it restores Etta Lemon to her rightful place in history – the extraordinary woman who saved the birds. READ MORE
'Brilliantly conceived. For although neither of Boase’s convention-shucking heroines had a jot of sympathy with the other’s cause, the consequences of their campaigns for progress dovetailed in a dazzling arc'
Helen Brown, The Daily Telegraph
'Riveting, dextrously told, vividly imagined, shrewdly analysed. Tessa Boase has worked a little bit of magic here in bringing these women to life, and championing the cause of the unsung'
Conor Jameson, British Birds
'A provocative and illuminating read, by turns fascinating and horrifying'
Philippa Stockley, Country Life