Rebel Heiress | Fiona Mountain

“I’d have thought any man might consider himself very fortunate to be loved by a lady who spoke the language of goddesses and could find her way amongst the stars.”


  • Book: Rebel Heiress
  • Series: –
  • Author: Fiona Mountain


Born into a world seething with treachery and suspicion, Eleanor Goodricke grows up on the Somerset Levels just after the English Civil Wars, heiress to her late mother’s estates and daughter of a Puritan soldier who fears for his brilliant daughter with her dangerous passion for natural history – and for butterflies in particular.

Her reckless courage will take her to places where no woman of her day ever dared to go. Her fearless ambition will give her a place in history for all time. But it is her passionate heart which will lead her into a consuming love – and mortal peril.

Based on a true story.


So what does this story entail? Let’s see, an intelligent young lady surrounded by backward minded people, as was the norm back in the 1600s. It’s a historical biography/fiction about a real woman who was ahead of her time. Eleanor Glanville is an entomologist but was deemed crazy by her town folk just for being so. It’s a real life story of science, loss, passion, hardship, betrayal, insanity, self discovery and finally acceptance.

I must admit. My initial thoughts of this book weren’t very kind but as the plot progressed I found myself engrossed with Eleanor. She had so much struggle in her life but always managed to see through all the darkness and focus on all the good. She never lost hope. That in itself is a lesson to be learned and worthy to be noted of.

I’ve learned to greatly respect her and only wish she was with us here today. In my opinion this time and age is more suitable for Eleanor’s mind and intellect, including Dickon, her son and James, her friend with benefits. They would’ve made a lovely trio in this time period.

The following includes my actual thoughts as I was progressing through the book and how they evolved. I will try not to include too much details about what actually happens in the book.


There’s too much useless description to go through about her estate. It’s just slowing me down. I’m not a huge fan of reading about trees, water features and endless descriptions of butterflies. Granted that the book is about an entomologist, but still.

Who are these suspicious men? I don’t trust either of them. One has to be faking it, (Edmund) and the other, (Richard), is troubled? Lying? Acting? Taking me for a challenge? I don’t like either of them. What am I reading? Theres something wrong her, both men seem so wrong for her.

Edmund is as boring as they get. Plain and ordinary. Annoying and very robotic. You can easily tell that her marriage to him won’t last long. It happened in a way I wasn’t expecting but still it happened nonetheless. I didn’t like him at all and was half hoping that an affair with Richard would start to give me some action to look forward to instead of the boring and slow progression of the plot. Nothing of significance is happening so far. I feel like this entire two parts could’ve shrunk to just one.

Richard seems to have problems and issues. Too many issues. Understandably so but it’s like he puts no effort in trying to heal himself. He is extremely needy and pushy. Nell is always reassuring him but he doesn’t seem to appreciate that. He is the jealous type. Too jealous to the point that it’s intolerable. He is also childish. Like he lives for the tit for tat rule. Annoying. I thought Richard would be great, but nope, he is worse. I’m starting to prefer her first husband, Edmund, over him. Richard just seems….disturbed.

I hate Richard. I hate him. I absolutely hate. I hope that no girl will ever have to go through a man like him. If there was ever a lunatic person in this story, it’s him. Not Eleanor, not Dickon (his son), but him. I hope he had a miserable life after what he did to poor Eleanor. Ugh, he is disgusting.


Fiona might have focused too much on the love life of Eleanor, more than her actual science. However, given the fact that Eleanor wasn’t allowed to do much at first but her “wifely” and “womanly” duties, I understand. I always admire women who had to struggle due to such idiotic ideologies. A single woman of that time has the strength and determination of a thousand men. Even though times have changed I still find that some factors displayed in this book still exist today. Especially the double standard presented between the sexes.

If you are into historical fiction, this is the book for you. Especially since it is based on an actual historical figure who ended up becoming an important Female Science Pioneer.

Final Rating:

“All I ever wanted was to be happy, to love and to be loved in return, and for my life to count for something. That is not madness, is it?” 


What did you think of this book, have you read anything similar to it? Or do you have any recommendations for me to try? Lets chat, don’t worry, I don’t bite. ^^

FOLLOW ME ON INSTAGRAM: @bookishowlette


6 thoughts on “Rebel Heiress | Fiona Mountain”

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