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The Dressmaker's Secret

(The Chronicles of Alice and Ivy #1)

3.82  ·  Rating details ·  103 ratings  ·  62 reviews
This is an alternate cover edition for ASIN B01AF700LG.

If they knew who she was, they’d never accept what she’s become.

Claire will stop at nothing to provide for her daughters. An unwed mother, she does everything possible to raise them whilst avoiding her scandalous past. Some secrets are best kept, even between mother and daughter.

Alice longs for a father, especi/>If
Kindle Edition, 3rd Edition
Published October 1st 2019 by Reveries Co. (first published January 10th 2016)
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Average rating 3.82  · 
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Kellyn Roth
Since ARC signups for The Dressmaker's Secret are finally open, and the book is coming out on January 10th of 2020, I guess it's time for my little intro/content guide!

First, I acknowledge this is a confusing novel! It was published ... then it was not published ... then it was published again. But this is the last relaunch. I promise.

Second, after my rewrites, The Dressmaker's Secret is practically a brand new book! (My little teaser for this relaunch is "her secret is not what you
Angela R. Watts
A historical novel you won't want to miss!


The story is captivating--a young girl wants to know who her father is and her mother is trying to move on from ghosts of her past. Well-woven and endearing, this story is hard to put down.


Setting is super important to me when it comes to historical fiction. I love seeing a place in history and taking in the lovely details. The setting in this book is beautiful. It makes me want to embrace the European in me and visit London/>/> ...more
Dani ❤️ Perspective of a Writer
Check out more reviews @ Perspective of a Writer...

8-year old Alice starts to wonder why she and her twin sister don't have a father after a revealing conversation with children her own age. Concluding that her mother is unhappy at his absence she determines to find him and create the family she believes her mother always wanted.

This book is quite conflictal for me.

The new covers are quite good and I can see why the author chose those images. Even the title quite works... The historical setting is quite well done and ev
Andrea Cox
I just finished editing this book. It's my favorite of Miss Roth's books so far. Such a charmer!
Amanda Tero
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
R.J. Rodda
2.5 stars.

This has a sweet ending and is an overtly Christian tale. The main character is eight year old Alice who is a caring, perceptive, loyal girl who doesn't know who her father is and is determined to find out. When her mother refuses to tell her, she investigates secretly. What she discovers surprised me and about three quarters of the way through this story I wondered if Alice would ever see her dreams come true. To her credit, she wants to see her mother happy but this seems an impossi
Sep 15, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I’m so excited to have read this book! I had heard a lot about Kellyn’s books, so I totally jumped at the opportunity to review it. 😉

I love how Kellyn pulled off an eight year old’s POV (actually two! eight year olds’ POVs), though I think (?) she has a sibling around that age, so that might have helped her. Or maybe she has pure talent in writing, which I don’t doubt either. 😉 I loved learning about the characters- good dependable Nessie, curious Alice, and Ivy who everyone thinks i
Angie Thompson
I was a bit hesitant to start this book, but I really appreciated the fact that the author took the moral high-road as far as the circumstances that left her characters in their respective positions. Not that everyone had always done the right thing, but the obvious assumptions were usually not the right ones. That was my main worry when I picked this book up, and I appreciated the way it was handled.

Alice was a very interesting character, although sometimes she felt a bit too percep
Daisy Paquet
Jun 27, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
2. This was an easy read!
3. ..So, is Ivy neurologically atypical (ASD, possibly?) because it was a difficult birth, or is that what the commonly used explanation in history?
4. Not preachy at all so <3
6. The plot was a teeeeensy bit predictable but I LIKED IT.
8. I just got book 2 and am so excited!! (!!!!)
Yay for the ending!

Some advise, people: don't read reviews of books while you're reading the book. It's not a good idea!! (Especially spoilers!)

The Characters
Alice - I liked her!!! All her questions made me smile, but they were for a good cause.
Ivy - Awww, loved her!
Claire - was it wrong for me to be driven mad by her attitude almost the entire time? Yeah, well, that's how I felt with her. I started really liking her after (view spoiler) ...more
Gracelyn Buckner
5 Stars

I've been wanting to read some of Kellyn Roth's books for a long time now, so when I finally started this, I was really excited! And I was not disappointed.



All of the characters had well-developed personalities. Although I was annoyed with Miss Chattoway until about halfway through, I ended up feeling sorry for her. I really loved Nettie and Jameson's relationship, and Nettie was really sweet to everyone. I was really excited with a the narrator being youn/>
Jun 26, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: historical
**This is a review of the second edition of The Dressmaker's Secret, published June 2017**

First off, bravo!!!! Encore!!! Amazing job, Kellyn! These books have to be among my favorite historical novels I've read. I enjoyed Ivy Introspective a bit more than I did The Dressmaker's Secret, but they both reminded me somewhat of A Little Princess. Maybe it's the setting, or the time period, or the sweet little girls (or all three), but I LOVED it. A Little Princess has always been a favor
Sarah Briel
**This is a review of the second edition of The Dressmaker's Secret, published June 2017. **

This book was bittersweetness from the view of smol curious children all stuffed in the package of a beautiful cover. I'm not even kidding. Like ... what shall I even say about this book?

As I've said, I did read the original edition (original published edition, that is.) which ... will honestly make this hard to review without comparing it to the original so ... I'm not actually going to try that har/>/>This
This book reminded me quite a bit of the Lamplighter books. It had the same feel and time period as a lot of them, but unfortunately was sub-par in writing quality. I did make it through the entire book, and some of it was enjoyable, so I gave it two stars for that. However, I had multiple issues with it, which I will get to in a minute.

The Good:
-The characterization was strong, and I felt like I came to know the characters well.
-The Dressmaker's Secret had a classic feel
I loved this book!! I couldn’t put it down once I stopped, and it drew me in.

Few negatives: The story was choppy and fast-paced at times, which is my main downside; there was a lot of time spent telling and not showing, and it dashed around from many different places and times. That said, however, because of this it was able to cover a long timespan, and I felt that aspect was good. I was confused as to who was who at the beginning, but fortunately that didn’t last too long.

All that, though, w
Reading more historical fiction was something that I promised myself I'd tackle this year, and so I was very pleased with Kellyn Roth asked me to read The Dressmaker's Secret. I love all things with a classic feel, and this book seemed to fall within that realm. As it stands, both the premise of the story and the mystery woven into it were wonderful. I only had a few qualms, which I'll address below.

First off, I must give credit to Kellyn Roth for excellent character building. Althou
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
I'm always excited to get the chance to read a book for review, and this book was not an exception. It's interesting to me to see the varying style of writings and stories writers choose to write. While this book isn't a favorite, I still was curious to see how it would end!

This story is not from one POV, but more from a narrative POV. I struggle reading a book that doesn't have one or two certain POV's. Alice was the main character and you see her feelings the most. For eight year o
Kate Willis
FTC DISCLOSURE: I received a complimentary copy of this book. A positive review was not required. These are my honest thoughts and opinions.

I loved Alice and Ivy (especially their names!!!!) and their childlike faith and fears. Mrs. Knight was such a darling and acted in a Christlike manner even when life was hard or awkward for her! It was also very revelatory to see that one small decision can affect generations for good or evil, and we are responsible before God for this. The writ
Libby May
Feb 14, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Yay! I really enjoyed this book. Nice job Kellyn! I like having a bit of background on Alice and her family. Very well written out! The drama, the balance, the way that Miss Chattoway was strong on the outside, tender and hurt on the inside, willing to move on, loving, and yet right.

Alice and Ivy were so cute! I really like the way the little 8 year olds played a role in the story.

There were a couple of sudden moves that had me blink, like, where did that come from? But all in all it was well
Sep 29, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Okay, this book was so interesting. Not interesting as in weird, but interesting as in it keeps your attention. I loved it! The storyline and the way it was written reminded me of Louisa May Alcott's books. Very vintage!

The only reason I took off one star was because of the amateur writing and the rush ending. The story itself was very well thought out, but I feel like the author probably could have written it better if she had put a little bit more into the actual writing itself. It
Erika Mathews
Aug 17, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorite-cover
I recommend this book and hope to read the sequel as soon as possible! The plot was interesting and the characters endearing. The POV seemed to jump around a lot, causing me to be a bit detached. The story was narrated as if from an omniscient POV even when it was clear that it was supposed to be from a character's POV. Also, the POV jumped between child and adult, and the jumps weren't always seamless. There's also part of me that thinks this book would be fascinating to children, and yet the t ...more
Lisa Elis
Apr 15, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
In my almost one year of  being acquainted with Indie Books, I've learned two things. First, that there are many hidden gems here. Two, that in spite of that, I can understand why some people are hesitant to read them. Some of them just don't stand up to traditionally published books in writing quality.

I find myself scrutinising the writing style in indie books so much more carefully than other books, even though I feel I shouldn't. I just DO. So I went into The Dressmaker's Se
Victoria Lynn
Feb 06, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
4.5 stars. . .

WOW! This book! I was blown away.

The story is complex and it reminded me of books such as The Lamplighter, The Wide Wide World and others from that era that I enjoy. It was written in such a way that younger girls 12+ would enjoy it just as much as I did. And I am in my 20's! The societal and family issues that are portrayed were fascinating.

As a compliment to the author, I fought through an hour of intense eye-strain to finish this book it was s
Kellyn Roth
Apr 04, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: girls 12-18
Well, at least I'm being honest - I really do like this book enough to rate it 5 stars! I don't know if you will or not, but I enjoyed writing it.

The first book in The Chronicles of Alice and Ivy is the story of curious eight-year-old Alice Chattoway and her mother, Claire Chattoway. This Christian Historical novel can be read as a standalone. Recommended for ages 12-18.

You can read more about it on my website.

~Kellyn Roth
Well, at least I'm being honest - I really do like this book enough to rate it 5 stars! I don't know if you will or not, but I enjoyed writing it.

The first book in The Chronicles of Alice and Ivy is the story of curious eight-year-old Alice Chattoway and her mother, Claire Chattoway. This Christian Historical novel can be read as a standalone. Recommended for ages 12-18.

You can read more about it
on my website.

~Kellyn Roth
Loretta Marchize
Feb 08, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorite-books
So first of all... I did NOT expect the ending!
(Major spoiler here)(view spoiler)
The characters were good and well-rounded. It was really cool to have the book from an eight-year-old's perspective. Alice was such a lovely character to read it from, and since she didn't always understand things it was very interesting to read. (Kellyn did a great job of portraying the children)
"Ghosts!" gasped Alice. "Real, live ghosts?"
"No! Not 'real, live ghosts!' Spooky, dead ghosts!"

This story was adorable. I love Alice as a main character, and having seen her as an older teenager, it was really cute to see her as a kid. The tone felt like that of a classic novel, and Alice reminded me of the heroines of classic children's literature, like Anne Shirley or Rebecca Randall. Kellyn writes sibling love wonderfully, and I adore it. The story gave me all the feels, and I really
Lindsey (Books for Christian Girls)
About this book:

“It comes to the attention of curious eight-year-old Alice Chattoway that her father is seemingly nonexistent. After realizing that his absence is making her mother unhappy, Alice becomes determined to find him and pull her family together. But Miss Chattoway’s answers to her daughter’s questions are vague at best and Alice begins to wonder if she will ever discover her mother’s secret.”

Series: Book #1 in “The Chronicles of Alice & Ivy” series.

Spiritual Conte
Cecily Wolfe
Nov 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Wow - color me impressed! What a compelling read with believable characters in a complicated, enthralling tale. Alice reminded me a bit of Anne Shirley from Anne of Green Gables. She is clever, smart, and refuses to give up. Readers who like the classics (like Anne, or along the lines of The Secret Garden, perhaps) with a Christian focus should enjoy this story very much.
Heena Patwa
The Dressmaker’s Secret is all about family, and love and faith. It's a heartwarming tale of the world seen through the eyes of an eight year old girl. It also made me wonder whether people start growing stupid instead of growing up. Adults complicate life unnecessarily.

Alice is the character you fall in love with right away, her sister Ivy does not get the same screen (my computer's screen) time though.

Alice trying to make her mother happy makes you thankful for th
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Kellyn Roth has been writing stories since she was seven, though she wrote quite a few (awful) poems and songs before that. Nowadays, she pens Christian & Historical Fiction, including lots of adorable children and mischievous animals - as well as a generous dose of BBC-style drama.

Miss Roth lives in the beautiful Columbia River Gorge with her parents, two little brothers, crazy border collies, ann


Other books in the series

The Chronicles of Alice and Ivy (4 books)
  • Ivy Introspective (The Chronicles of Alice and Ivy #2)
  • At Her Fingertips (The Chronicles of Alice and Ivy, #3)
  • Beyond Her Calling (The Chronicles of Alice and Ivy, #4)
“Low and behold what comes of reading too many romance novels.” 15 likes
“Ghosts!” gasped Alice. “Real, live ghosts?”

“No! Not ‘real, live ghosts!’ Spooky, dead ghosts!”
More quotes…