Author: Megan Shepherd.
Published: January 29th 2013
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Sort: Part one of ‘The madman’s daughter.’
Source: I received this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
In the darkest places, even love is deadly. 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 rumours 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.
”Maybe we weren’t wicked, but there was something stained, something torn, in the fabric of our being.”
Juliet’s mother passed away and she is now trying to survive by cleaning the laboratory after animal experiments. As a girl, there is no way she can study with the boys to have a chirurgic future. But she isn’t just a regular lady. Her father was a famous surgeon before a huge scandal destroyed his future. He disappeared from her life, but he left her with a lot of information about biology and experiments. When Juliet hears rumours about her father, she decided to gain more information and that is how she finds Montgomery. She grew up with him and he tells her about her father: he is now living on an abandoned island, practicing new experiments. Juliet is desperate to escape her life and she travels with Montgomery. On their way, they find a man on sea called Edward.
Juliet is now thrown into the madness of her father’s mind. What is going on with all the strange vivisections and the deformed humans?
Vivisections; I think it’s horrible to do something like that to an animal, but it was interesting to read about. Especially with the mad mind of Juliet’s father. He is a twisted genius who tries to show he is equal to God and it gives a lot of excitement in this book. There are some scary situations when her father loses control over his experiments. A monster is roaming around and Juliet is starting to worry about her life. I had some heart-pounding moments and that has been a while. I loved it! This story is quite messed-up and the side characters are fascinating.
I was also invested in Juliet’s story. Abandoned by her father after his bad reputation, alone after her mother’s dead, it’s not easy for her. She is far too intelligent, determined and free for this time period and I admire her spirit. I could connect with her: she wants to learn and she is interested in biology. I’m not easily disgusted like her, because of my study. (example: I had to do a section on a rat. He died humane) I didn’t care for the love-triangle. She is very easy when it comes to love and I didn’t feel the connection between any of the characters. She and Montgomery were the most likeable together, since they have a past, but love? Nope.
The writing-style is pleasant. It’s fast, easy and descriptive. It wasn’t hard to get swept away and I saw everything around me – which was quite terrifying now and then. The ending was good. Closed, but I’m also looking forward to the next book.