The Maiden

Kate Foster

27 April 2023
384 pages


The Times bestseller and winner of the Bloody Scotland Pitch Perfect Award and the Bloody Scotland Crime Debut of the Year.

'A masterpiece' – Janice Hallett, author of The Appeal

Inspired by a real-life case, Kate Foster's The Maiden is a remarkable story with a feminist revisionist twist, giving a voice to women otherwise silenced by history.

In the end, it did not matter what I said at my trial. No one believed me.

Edinburgh, October 1679. Lady Christian is arrested and charged with the murder of her lover, James Forrester. News of her imprisonment and subsequent trial is splashed across the broadsides, with headlines that leave little room for doubt: Adulteress. Whore. Murderess.

Only a year before, Lady Christian was newly married, leading a life of privilege and respectability. So, what led her to risk everything for an affair? And does that make her guilty of murder? She wasn't the only woman in Forrester's life, and certainly not the only one who might have had cause to wish him dead . . .

'Exceptional – a tense, thrilling investigation, with a decidedly feminist slant' Daily Mail

'Riveting . . . the tension persists until the last page’ — The Times

The Maiden is a masterpiece. A thrilling historical murder tale but so much more. Vivid, evocative and full of humanity.
This riveting debut novel by Kate Foster takes the true story of the murder [of James Forrester] and spins it into a mystery full of twists . . . The tension persists until the last page.
Kate Foster expands the slender facts of the case into something exceptional — a tense, thrilling investigation, with a decidedly feminist slant.