The Shop Girls


The Shop Girls is proud to be included in The Sunday Times list of 2014 best reads, highlighted as a bestseller in its biography category.

The Shop Girls was published on 25 September, 2014 by Little Brown. I had great fun researching and writing about a fabulous elegant ladies department store in Cambridge called Heyworth’s. It closed its doors 49 years ago, yet the vivid memories of its shop girls and the flamboyant lifestyle of its owner, Herbert Heyworth, could have come straight from the pages of Mr Selfridge, who himself had connections with Cambridge.

For Eve, Irene, Betty and Rosemary, working at the exclusive Heyworth’s department store in Cambridge is a dream come true. Once the girls step inside the elegant building – surrounded by luxurious dresses and beautiful accessories – the hardships of their own lives are temporarily forgotten. Serving a variety of curious customers, from glamorous gypsy queens to genuine royalty and stuffy academics to the city’s fashionable elite, the store is a place where these young women can forge successful careers, under the ever-watchful eye of flamboyant owner Mr Heyworth.

Set against the backdrop of the closing years of the Second World War, and moving into the 1950s, The Shop Girls perfectly captures the camaraderie and friendship of four ambitious young women working together in a store that offered them an escape from the drudgery of their wartime childhoods. Each of the girls’ stories were individually published from July 2014 in fortnightly serialised ebooks, leading up to the release of the complete edition (with bonus material) in September.

Learn more about lead The Shop Girls

Eve’s story – sweet and shy, Eve’s life changes forever when she falls in love with a former Japanese prisoner-of-war.

Irene’s story – confident and go-getting, Irene must choose between staying at home with her young daughter or keeping the job she loves.

Betty’s story – gutsy and hard working, Betty has to make many sacrifices to provide for the daughter she is raising on her own.

Rosemary’s story – glamorous and fun-loving, Rosemary surprises everyone when she enters a Butlins beauty pageant.

Also –

The Shop Girls sell-out launch makes history, read the story here

The Shop Girls speaking events, where you can meet author Ellee Seymour, future dates are listed here

The Shop Girls media, read the headlines, including The Sunday Times listing the book in its 2014 selection of “the year’s best reads.”



You can follow regular updates about The Shop Girls on our dedicated Facebook page.

The Shop Girls: Paperback edition by Ellee Seymour

Many thanks to my webmaster Ian McKendrick of Watercolour Journey for his fabulous artwork.

Structured Data, Review
Title: The Shop Girls
Reviewed by Ellee Seymour on Jul 9
Rating: 5.0
Summary: A captivating insight into the domestic life of four young girls working together in an exclusive department store during the 1950’s
Description: The Shop Girls: A True Story of Hard Work, Friendship and Fashion in an Exclusive 1950s Department Store by Ellee Seymour