Thursday, October 16, 2014

Of Monsters and Madness by Jessica Verday
Release Date: September 9th 2014 by EgmontUSA
Genre: Young Adult > Suspense
Source: Netgalley (Thank you Netgalley & EgmontUSA!)
Find It: Amazon || GoodReads || B&N
A romantic, historical retelling of classic Gothic horror featuring Edgar Allan Poe and his character Annabel Lee, from a New York Times best-selling author.

Summoned to her father's home in 1820's Philadelphia, a girl finds herself in the midst of a rash of gruesome murders in which he might be implicated. She is torn romantically between her father's assistants-one kind and proper, one mysterious and brooding-who share a dark secret and may have more to do with the violent events than they're letting on.

Of Monsters and Madness wasn't a book I was expecting to pick up but I'm a bit glad I did. 

I'll admit now, I know nothing about Edger Allen Poe except what The Simpsons have covered. I'm not too into poetry and definitely not into dark poetry. So I'm unfamiliar with Annabel Lee.

Of Monsters and Madness took me by surprise. Maybe because I didn't really know what I was getting into or what to expect. Annabel has just lost her mother and her father has called for her and her mothers to come live with him in Philadelphia. But Annabel arrives alone meeting a young lady who becomes one of my favorite characters and is her maid and a man named Allan. As she arrives to the house it becomes clear that her father did not call for her but rather her grandfather who is a very loving and comforting person. Her father however is very standoff-ish, angry, self absorbed and dismissive. As if getting use to her "place" in this new world (where she isn't allowed to do anything as she has a maid and isn't allowed to practice medicine as her father doesn't believe women should) wasn't enough, she doesn't understand who Edger is, who Allen was, why all of these strange things keep happening and trying to gain acceptance from her mysterious father. 

Annabel happens to run into Allen the majority of the time she's there and tending to the cooks and house aids when they need healing though she shouldn't be. And also venturing into the market with her maid. But nothing anyone is telling her is making sense and no one will explain exactly who Edger is. 

Of Monsters and Madness was one whirl of a ride. The mystery behind the strange things happening and trying to figure these two boys out as well as what the heck was wrong with her father kept me turning the pages. I felt for Annabel and he struggle into fitting into her new life that she didn't really understand and her fear when realizing what was really going on. There was a bit of a creep factor to it but nothing that will keep you up at night, more like something that will make you wonder how in the world....?

I'm not one for suspense novels such as these and the ones I'll be reviewing this month but I think I'm warming up to them.


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