Sunday, January 14, 2018

Review: The Strange Case of the Alchemist's Daughter

The Strange Case of the Alchemist's Daughter The Strange Case of the Alchemist's Daughter by Theodora Goss
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This was a cracking good tale! Half the fun was identifying the 19th C. tales of the fantastic that are referenced: Rappaccini’s Daughter, Murders in the Rue Morgue, Frankenstein, Dracula, Sherlock Holmes, Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, the Cornish Giant, The Prisoner of Zenda and The Island of Dr. Moreau are some of the stories mentioned as wonderful plot points.

But at its heart, The Alchemist’s Daughter is The League of Extraordinary Gentlewomen (along with a token male, one Mr. Holmes), sisters brought together by circumstances. They’re not all exactly human, but they share a common need to be accepted, part of a family.

Mary Jekyll, a conventional London spinster, uncovers a mystery following her mother’s death, a near feral young woman named Diana Hyde who claims to be her sister. From there the mysteries grow and expand as they meet others connected to Mary and Diana by a mysterious scientific society.

I would love to read more tales of these women and their adventures (chronicled for profit by one of their little band) and it’s fun to see a new take on classic tales of English literature.

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