Sunday, January 31, 2016

Review of "The Mourning Doll" By: Karen Joyce Kay

"The Mourning Doll" By: Karen Joyce Kay
Rating: 3.5*

Dark and deep…

It’s been a long time since I’ve read a book set in the Victorian era and, after reading this, I wondered why I stayed away so long. This time period is steeped in so many traditions that the restrictions on manners and lifestyles is felt in everything said and done. The story reads like the time – formal and very aware of the eyes and ears that look and judge everything said and done. The hint of scandal can set society in a frenzy and when there is real conflict – well, the results can be catastrophic.

Sir Lincoln Rinehart is a man of his age though he feels the restrictions and the negative aspects of the society he lives in very deeply. What do you do when your heart and your mind are at war with what others feel is the right and proper way? Rebellion in an era that treats such behaviour swiftly and with almost cruelty is hard-won and not attempted without sacrifices. Lincoln realizes that first-hand as his life becomes rife with conflict and also love. Lady Delphinia has him questioning everything he holds dear, including the good fight he is waging for those less fortunate.

The feel of this story was dark and mysteriously gothic in the way it unfolds. From an almost creepy opening scene to the formality of parliamentary procedure, fear, anxiety, anger and love simmered in every conversation and observation. Almost lyrical in the writing, this story made me think and wonder about what lies under the surface of men and women; and how, regardless of the calendar date, some things do not change…

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