Welcome to the 'Belle Epoque' pages of the THE HOURS BEFORE

These pages are designed to accompany your reading of the novel 'THE HOURS BEFORE' by Robert Stehen Parry, and is home to a selection of photographs and period artwork to add to your enjoyment of the story.

The novel, featuring areas as diverse as journalism, stage magic, big business and the occult, is set at the turn of the 20th century in the era of the 'Belle Epoque. More specifically, it spans the end of the Victorian era and the start of the Edwardian.

Locations cover a wide range, from London's Fleet Street to the remote Gothic settings of continental Europe.

A special page of reading notes for bookclubs or reading groups can be found
book cover with dark background and antique chantilly lace motif with poppies, gold lettering

Vienna, c. 1905. In darkness, late at night, a woman returns to her hotel to discover her usual maid has been replaced by a stranger. What begins as an icy exchange, born of weariness, becomes within minutes one of the most extraordinary encounters of her life. It will take her on a journey deep into her past and yet also closer, hour by hour, to a fateful assignation awaiting her on the other side of the night.
Set amid the elegance and sophistication of the Belle Epoque, and the Gothic splendour of late Victorian England, ‘The Hours Before’ is a story of drama and mystery, revealing a hidden world of vice and malevolence – but also a pathway of transformation and knowledge.
A video trailer accompanied by the music of Tchaikovsky and by details from various Belle Epoque paintings can be found on the author's website.