Friday, August 14, 2015

Review: The Madman's Daughter by Megan Shepherd

Title: The Madman's Daughter
Author: Megan Shepherd
Publication Date:  January 29th, 2013
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Source: Bought it
Where to find: Goodreads / Amazon / Book Depository
Summary: Sixteen-year-old Juliet Moreau has built a life for herself in London—working as a maid, attending church on Sundays, and trying not to think about the scandal that ruined her life. After all, no one ever proved the rumors about her father's gruesome experiments. But when she learns he is alive and continuing his work on a remote tropical island, she is determined to find out if the accusations are true.

Accompanied by her father's handsome young assistant, Montgomery, and an enigmatic castaway, Edward—both of whom she is deeply drawn to—Juliet travels to the island, only to discover the depths of her father's madness: He has experimented on animals so that they resemble, speak, and behave as humans. And worse, one of the creatures has turned violent and is killing the island's inhabitants. Torn between horror and scientific curiosity, Juliet knows she must end her father's dangerous experiments and escape her jungle prison before it's too late. Yet as the island falls into chaos, she discovers the extent of her father's genius—and madness—in her own blood.

Inspired by H. G. Wells's classic The Island of Dr. Moreau, The Madman's Daughter is a dark and breathless Gothic thriller about the secrets we'll do anything to know and the truths we'll go to any lengths to protect.
"It wasn’t just my curiosity, or my fascination with anatomy, or how I could unhesitatingly chop a rabbit’s head off with an ax when a roomful of boys couldn’t. Those things were all symptoms of the same sickness - a kind of madness inherited from my father. It was a dangerous pull in my gut drawing me toward the dark possibilities of science, toward the thin line between life and death, toward the animal impulses hidden behind a corset and a smile.”
This is one of those books that going into it I did not know much about it. I had not even really heard that many things about it. And after finishing it, I have to say I’m glad I went into it with little to no expectations. To start off the writing in this book absolutely blew me away. I loved every aspect of the writing style and how Megan Shepherd weaved the story and the characters together into this dark twisted tail.

Right from the beginning of the book, I was pulled into the mystery of Juliet and her father’s experiments. From there, the tale got darker and more gruesome as the truth came out. This is definitely a dark tale filled with questionable morals, ethics, and choices. I really enjoyed the way in which this story was told with Juliet struggling with the desire to reconcile with her father and her hatred of his work and his experiments.
I'm typically not a huge fan of historical fiction, but the way in which this was written did not scream historical fiction. I think the Gothic nature of the book helped take my mind away from the obvious historical aspect. This book is also related to H.G. Wells's The Island of Dr. Moreau, which I am not familiar with, but I now want to pick it up to see what inspired this book.
I really enjoyed Juliet as a character. She was incredibly strong despite everything she had gone through. While at times she was mad with hatred, I loved getting to know her character and see how she came to various decisions. Juliet’s father is also a big part of this story and his character was so twisted, but also completely believable. I appreciated that the “villain” in this book was so complex and intricate. As for the other characters, you had Montgomery and Edward, both of who vie for Juliet’s affections. I thought the love triangle was not necessary, but luckily it was not a large aspect of the book. It is because of this love triangle that I lowered my rating to 4.5, because otherwise I absolutely loved this book.

The last 30 or so pages of this book are absolutely insane, with so many things happening and changing the course of the book and the trilogy. I was completely shocked by a lot of what unfolded and am now left anxiously waiting to start the second book to see how Juliet copes with the outcome and what happened to her on the island. 

Have you read this trilogy? What are your thoughts? Let me know in the comments!

No comments:

Post a Comment