The Madman’s Daughter by Megan Shepherd
Series: The Madman’s Daughter, #1
Release Date: January 29th 2013
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Genre: Young Adult – Historical Fiction, Thriller
Source: My Collection
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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.
Inspired by H. G. Wells's classic The Island of Dr. Moreau, The Madman's Daughter is a dark and breathless Gothic thriller about the secrets we'll do anything to know and the truths we'll go to any lengths to protect.
The Madman’s Daughter is a story told from Juliet Moreau, the daughter of a very well-known London Doctor. Her father was run out of town when it was discovered that he was doing some very gruesome experiments. It was presumed that he was dead but nothing was ever confirmed. After her father left, it was just Juliet and her mom. They were forced to sell everything and move into a small apartment. Her mother was reduced to selling herself to keep them alive. Soon her mother passed away and all her things were sold and Juliet was left to find for herself. The daughter of a once very rich father was no reduced to a cleaning maid. She lost all her friends, except one who she actually wasn’t supposed to talk to, and had no family to turn to.
Juliet is invited to a party with her good friend Lucy but she doesn’t feel like she belongs with that crowed anymore. Soon she is talked into going to the university where she works to prove a point. They stumble upon a group of students doing a live dissection of a rabbit and it turns out they have something that once belonged to her father. From there on she is determined that her father is alive and does everything she can to find out. She ends up on a ship to an island located near Australia with a man, only a couple years older than herself who used to be a servant in her house when she was young. She has always admired him and now she feels even more connected. Then in comes a very mysterious castaway, who seems to be very interested in Juliet. When Juliet arrives at the island she learns quite a bit about her father and discovers some very disturbing things.
This is a retelling of H.G. Wells book The Island of Dr. Moreau. I have never read that story so I have no idea if it is a descent retelling or not. The book has a very creepy, dark mood to it and it does a very good job of maintaining that mood throughout. Even the happy parts still have a dark feel to them. This book was described as having some gross scenes and I would totally agree with that. They talk about vivisection (live dissection) of animals and even people and the details are rather gross. I don’t have a problem reading this but I could see how some people would. Most of the disturbing scenes involve animals but there are a couple scenes that involve people. Juliet’s father is definitely a madman and rightly earns that title. He is a horrible father or person in general.
I really enjoyed the writing, the characters, and everything about this book. The ending was so intense! Definitely the best part of the book. This is obviously a good thing because I couldn’t wait to pick up the second book! If you are into gothic thrillers then I highly recommend this. Just be prepared for the gross parts. I also sort of want to pick up the H.G. Wells book now!