Friday, November 19, 2010

Wildthorn by Jane Eagland

Eagland, Jane Wildthorn, 352 p. Houghton, 2010.  $16.  Mature Content: PG-13; Language: G (3 swears, 0 “F”).  Louisa Cosgrove? Lucy Childs? Who is the girl who has been brought to Wildthorn Hall?  She is sure that she is Louisa Cosgrove, the cosseted daughter of a recently deceased physician in turn of the century England.  But her keepers tell her she is not – and that her insistence is just a manifestation of her illness.  Try as she might, Louisa can see no way out of her predicament, and her machinations just pull her further and further down a path towards cruelty and madness.  Who could hate her enough to put Louisa in this place?  And who will help her escape?  Almost like a gothic romance, Eagland weaves a story based on the ways women were treated in the late 1800’s.  And especially the methods used in places that pretended to treat mental illness.  I would only recommend this for older readers, however, because Louisa discovers the love of a woman, and in the epilogue it becomes steamy on-page.  HS – ADVISABLE. Cindy, Library Teacher.

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