Publication Date: December 1, 2009 | Series: Beautiful Creatures
There were no surprises in Gatlin County. We were pretty much the epicenter of the middle of nowhere. At least, that’s what I thought. Turns out, I couldn’t have been more wrong. There was a curse. There was a girl. And in the end, there was a grave.
Lena Duchannes is unlike anyone the small Southern town of Gatlin has ever seen, and she’s struggling to conceal her power, and a curse that has haunted her family for generations. But even within the overgrown gardens, murky swamps and crumbling graveyards of the forgotten South, a secret cannot stay hidden forever.
Ethan Wate, who has been counting the months until he can escape from Gatlin, is haunted by dreams of a beautiful girl he has never met. When Lena moves into the town’s oldest and most infamous plantation, Ethan is inexplicably drawn to her and determined to uncover the connection between them.
In a town with no surprises, one secret could change everything.
–This text refers to the MP3 CD Library Binding edition
This is a story of good vs evil, light vs dark, family loyalty, true friendships and young love, however, the ending did leave me feeling a bit let down. Maybe it’s just me but I was looking for a little more explanation at the end, but that leaves it open to a sequel later. This is a Young Adult paranormal book but perfect for anyone that likes a good read.
This is the second time I’ve read this book and I did it to refresh my memory because the movie will be out soon.
A caution for readers eager to enjoy the traditional trappings of a gothic historical romance: this novel, like its protagonist, doesn’t always conform. Seventeen-year-old Louisa Cosgrove wants to be a doctor, but she is constantly blocked by societal and familial opposition. Only her father, who educates her himself, much to her mother’s concern and brother’s jealousy, wants Louisa to succeed. Shortly after his death, she is tricked into going to Wildthorn Hall, an insane asylum. Now addressed as Lucy Childs, stripped of her clothes and, ultimately, her identity, Louisa must plan her escape and uncover the betrayal that landed her in Wildthorn. While paying proper homage to women of the past wrongly locked away for an “over interest in learning,” Eagland casts just the right amount of doubt about Louisa’s sanity, with the conflicted heroine thrown into further confusion as she slowly falls for the kindnesses of a chambermaid named Eliza. Though predictable on occasion, Eagland’s debut stands out for its well-crafted treatment of an unconventional love affair. Grades 9-12. –Courtney Jones
Since I’m a fan of the movie, The Snake Pit, starring Olivia de Havilland, which is based on the autobiography of Mary Jane Ward, I loved this story. The circumstances of how and why Louisa came to be a Wildthorn and the time period is different but the cruelty of the staff and the very bad conditions of the institutions are the same.
I recommend this book to anyone who like historical fiction and if you haven’t seen The Snake Pit check it out.