LONDON IN CHAINS, by Gillian Bradshaw

Who knew the English Civil War was plural? Neither, confesses this very talented author, did she. Set in London in 1647, young Lucy Wentnor - rejected by her father after she is raped by three soldiers - goes to London to stay with her uncle. Uncle's wife, a bitter and contentious harridan, never looses a chance to stir up trouble; her particular focus is on her husband's political leanings. Quickly, Lucy is swept into the world of political life that could put her in the Tower, as she becomes a printer's apprentice despite the loud objections of her Uncle's wife. And if all the intrigue between king and Cromwell's troops isn't enough, the plague arrives. If you have any interest in British history as seen through non-royal eyes, this is the perfect read. I'll give it an 4. You'll be happy to know there is a sequel.