“A sensuous, perplexing book, at once sinister and dignified, grubby and gorgeous, panoramic yet specific…I don’t think I have ever been so thrilled.”
NO MAJOR SPOILERS
There is nothing better than a well written captivating work of fiction based on real events and people or historical fiction.
I found myself totally immersed in the story of Grace Marks, our protagonist of the story, a young girl who immigrated from Ireland to Canada with her family as a young girl, went into service and only aged sixteen was found an accomplice in a double murder of her employer and housekeeper.
Her co-conspirator was duly hung but she would spend the following 29 years in an asylum or prison.
The author gave Grace a voice in a first person narrative while the other characters who completed the work were told as an invisible narrative, written quite effectively and using written correspondence for realism.
There were many elements incorporated, psychology and the paranormal and it’s hard to sometimes decide what is true and what is fantasy.
At the time treating mental illness had not advanced all that much and those that explored the field, as this work shows, were clueless.
I thought it a very well written novel and highly recommend.
Added 28th March 2018