Saturday, April 12, 2014

Her Dark Curiosity by Megan Shepherd

Series: The Madman’s Daughter (bk. 2)

Genera(s): Gothic Horror/Historical Fiction/Sci-fi

Subjects: monsters, retellings, scientists, experiments, murder

Setting: London, England, the 1890s

POV/Tense: 1st person POV, past tense: Juliet Moreau

Age/Grade Level: Teen

Length: 420 pgs.

HC/PB: Hardcover

List Price: $17.99

Publisher: HarperTeen: Balzer + Bray

Summary/ product description: “To defeat the darkness, she must first embrace it.

Months have passed since Juliet Moreau returned to civilization after escaping her father's island—and the secrets she left behind. Now, back in London once more, she is rebuilding the life she once knew and trying to forget Dr. Moreau’s horrific legacy—though someone, or something, hasn’t forgotten her.

As people close to Juliet fall victim one by one to a murderer who leaves a macabre calling card of three clawlike slashes, Juliet fears one of her father’s creations may have also escaped the island. She is determined to find the killer before Scotland Yard does, though it means awakening sides of herself she had thought long banished, and facing loves from her past she never expected to see again.

As Juliet strives to stop a killer while searching for a serum to cure her own worsening illness, she finds herself once more in the midst of a world of scandal and danger. Her heart torn in two, past bubbling to the surface, life threatened by an obsessive killer—Juliet will be lucky to escape alive.

With inspiration from Robert Louis Stevenson’s The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, this is a tantalizing mystery about the hidden natures of those we love and how far we’ll go to save them from themselves.

My Review:  What was started The Madman’s Daughter continues in Her Dark Curiosity. The first book was a retelling of the Island of Dr. Moreau, and this book is a retelling of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. The 3rd and final book will be a retelling of Frankenstein. This series is the only historical fiction series I ever enjoyed. I get really bored with steam punk and British hist-fic. This book is not steam punk. It’s Gothic and Sci-fi and really thrilling. Juliet is a great narrator and the book’s filled with gore and twists.

Juliet is back in London and there’s a murderer on the loose. The murders a so similar to how Edward (as the Beast) killed people back on the island. Edward has come to London and he’s struggling with the Beast side of him. Lucy finds Edward very attractive. Juliet doesn’t find their relationship very safe. Lucy plays a very big role in this book. We didn’t get to see her much in the first book. Montgomery also comes back. There’s a bit of romance, mainly kissing.  

There’s a lot of science stuff, but most of it is fictional. This kind of science didn’t really exist in the late 1800s. Successful transplants are pretty recent.  There’s a group called the King’s Men (members of the Kings Club) that explore the science that Juliet’s father was studying and experimenting. Juliet’s new guardian is a professor named Victor von Stein, whose part of the King’s Men. It made me think of the Humpty Dumpty nursery rhyme: “All the king’s horse and all the King’s Men could put Humpty Dumpty back together again.” Victor von Stein sounds close to Frankenstein too.

The book reminded me of some movies I’ve seen. Movies about mad scientist, or even the movie: The League of Extraordinary Men. The first book reminded me of movie about castaways and tropical islands and explorers. These books a very cinematic and I’d love to see them as movies. They’d be creepy and have awesome special effects and make-up/costumes.

From a person who doesn’t like historical fiction, this is historical fiction for people who are not fond of historical fiction. It’s for people who love sci-fi and dystopian series with things like genetic engineering and crazy experiments. Megan Shepherd is great at keeping you on the edge of your seat. The dialogue doesn’t cause boredom. It’s set in London, but written by someone from North Carolina. It’s smart and different and I can’t wait for more.

Cover Art Review:  This cover is not very exciting. I do like the dress on this cover better than the one on the first book. But the cover here does have a gothic feel.

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