Title: The Madman’s Daughter
Author: Megan Shepherd
Publisher: Balzer & Bray
Publication Date: January 29, 2013
Genre: Gothic thriller
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 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.
I’m going to do my best to keep this review short, because I’m afraid if I write a lot, I’ll accidentally reveal some spoilers.
In short, The Madman’s Daughter was amazing. It was exciting and dark and atmospheric to a T, and if I’d known how good it was I would have read it the second it came out instead of waiting until May. This book has so many of the plot elements I love and it’s all wrapped into one book: creepy experiments, hot guys, and the everlasting battle between sanity and insanity. I generally don’t tend to like anything remotely historical, but apparently I love a good Gothic thriller. Everything about it was pretty much perfect: I loved the beginning sequences in London with Juliet at the college and Dr. Hastings, who was amazingly creepy, and I also really liked the scenes while Juliet and Montgomery were at sea. I hardly ever hear about books with travel on boats, and since this is historical fiction, it made that part of the story even more exciting.
Shepherd also creates perfect, well-developed characters that you can’t help but love, even the super messed up ones. This book is creepy, thrilling, and heartbreaking with great twists and turns, and I can’t wait to read the next book in the series.