The Hunt by Megan Shepherd

The HuntTitle: The Hunt
Author: Megan Shepherd
Series: The Cage Series
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Published: May 24th, 2016
Rating: ★★★★☆ (4 out of 5) Continue reading

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The Cage by Megan Shepherd

The CageTitle: The Cage
Author: Megan Shepherd
Series: The Cage Series
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Published: May 19th, 2015
Rating: ★★★★☆ (4 out of 5) Continue reading

Book Review: A Cold Legacy by Megan Shepherd

Title: A Cold Legacy
Author: Megan Shepherd
Series: Madman’s Daughter trilogy
Rating: ★★★★

A Cold Legacy

I didn’t realize how much I liked dark retellings until this series. The Madman’s Daughter was not a book I would have usually picked up. And then I loved it and had to read Her Dark Curiosity. And then I was even more in love and couldn’t wait to read A Cold Legacy.

Juliet is engaged to Montgomery. She’s finally admitted that while she cares for Edward and the Beast, she truly loves Montgomery. She’s also a little horrified by the actions she took at the end of Her Dark Curiosity. She’s afraid she’s turning into a madwoman, taking after her father. She doesn’t want to go down that road, but she feels a pull towards it anyway.

Juliet, Montgomery, Edward, and Lucy travel to Ballentyne to escape from police after the events of Her Dark Curiosity. There, they find a new mix of people and questions. Juliet discovers a secret that would push her beyond her father’s legacy and she must decide what her road will be.

I don’t want to say too much about the plot, as I think everything is best discovered as you read, but I will say I could not put the story down. I read page after page, and didn’t even want to stop to sleep. The Scottish moors location provides the perfect backdrop for the dark tale. I only really had one issue with the book, and it happens at the end of the story. I felt like a storyline was left just a little too open and unresolved.

I am happy Juliet decided to be with Montgomery. Even if she can’t see it, when she chooses Montgomery, she also choses the kind of scientist she wants to be. Edward and the Beast represent the mad desire she wants to run from so badly, and Montgomery represents the other curious, but respectful side. I think, in making her choice between the two, she unknowing decides the type of scientist she will be. She might question herself and keep secrets, but I just think she doesn’t really understand herself until the very end.

My only issue with the book is how much emphasis is put on which parent she will take after. It was a little frustrating to read, over and over, how Juliet didn’t want to end up like her father, but she also didn’t want to end up like her mother. It seemed like Juliet, as well as her friends, never really voiced the opinion that Juliet is Juliet; she doesn’t have to end up like either of her parents. Just because she was their daughter does not mean those are the only two paths she has.

A Cold Legacy was an almost perfect end to a wonderful series. I would still recommend it, though. It’s definitely not a book series for everyone, as it’s dark and a little gruesome at times, but it still is completely fantastic. If you’re up for a little darkness, the entire Madman’s Daughter series is perfect.

If you’d like to read A Cold Legacy, you can purchase it here:
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Thank you to Edelweiss and Balzer + Bray for an advanced copy of the novel in exchange for an honest review.

Book Review: Her Dark Curiosity by Megan Shepherd

Title: Her Dark Curiosity
Author: Megan Shepherd
Series: The Madman’s Daughter trilogy
Rating: ★★★★

Her Dark Curiosity

I really enjoyed The Madman’s Daughter and was anxious to read Her Dark Curiosity. I became even more anxious when I read it was inspired by The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.

There are certainly issues with this novel. Juliet definitely made some stupid decisions. There’s a love triangle and some people just aren’t fans. But those issues never took me out of the novel. Shepherd explains them, or they play such a big part of the story that they make complete sense.

Take Juliet, for example, and some of her more unintelligent decisions. She feels compassion for the Beast and Edward. She trusts him when she probably shouldn’t. She keeps secrets when she shouldn’t. But each time she does one of these things, it makes sense. She herself isn’t completely human, so she understands Edward and the Beast in a way. She questions whether she can truly be at peace with what she is if she treat someone else created is a negative way. She knows and recognizes how mad her father had gotten, and she knows how far she fell after he was cast out. She fears that admitting she has the same curiosity means she will end up like her father, and telling people those secrets scares her.

I get it. I understand why Juliet sometimes comes off as making bad choices. She makes stupid decisions, but I can understand the reasoning behind them.

As for the love triangle, I never really felt like it was done to make people love one person and hate the other. The two interests mirror Juliet’s feelings about herself. There’s Edward and the Beast on one side, playing to Juliet’s fear of her father and her own madness. On the other side is Montgomery, showing Juliet that science doesn’t have to mean madness. I thought it was really well done.

Her Dark Curiosity continues the amazing journey The Madman’s Daughter started. It makes you think about what makes people good and evil. It’s fantastic in its descriptions and story. Like its predecessor, it’s dark, but wonderfully so. I am loving this series.

If you’d like to read Her Dark Curiosity, you can purchase it here:
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Review: The Madman’s Daughter by Megan Shepherd

Title: The Madman’s Daughter
Author: Megan Shepherd
Series: The Madman’s Daughter Trilogy
Rating: ★★★★

Even a day later, I’m still having trouble figuring out what to write about this book. It’s dark, twisted, and a little horrific at times. It brings up an interesting topic and works to address it. There’s a love triangle that doesn’t annoy me. This definitely isn’t a book everyone will enjoy, but I loved it.

Juliet Moreau has lived with the consequences of her father’s actions for years. He vanished in the midst of a scandal, leaving Juliet and her mother to fend for themselves. After her mother dies, Juliet goes to work as a maid. After a series of events, she travels to visit her father, living isolated on an island, accompanied by Montgomery, the son of a former servant, and Edward, a castaway. Once on the island, Juliet discovers the truth about her father’s madness and how she is connected to it.

I’m torn in my feelings about Montgomery and Edward. In Montgomery’s favor is the childhood bond he shares with Juliet. They grew up together and there’s something about childhood friends that lasts a lifetime. But he also witnessed and was a part of her father’s actions, something Juliet isn’t sure she can handle. Edward is mysterious, running away from a past he doesn’t want anyone to know. Juliet can understand that desire after seeing the madman her father has become.

I had never read H. G. Well’s The Island of Moreau, but that didn’t take anything away from the novel. It’s dark and twisted, but not overly so. Things are discussed and Juliet comes to her own conclusions, but for the most part, the evil takes place outside of the novel. We get to see the consequences instead of the actions. I figured out one of the twists and had a feeling about another, but I was so drawn in that it didn’t slow my reading at all.

The Madman’s Daughter poses interesting questions. What is it that gives someone his or her humanity? Is it simply being human? Or can it be created? Dr. Moreau is clearly a madman, conducting experiments that should never happen. Does he still hold on to his humanity because he was born a human? What about the creatures he created? They were not human to begin with, but through the doctor’s experiments, did they gain their humanity? Are they people because they have human emotions, thoughts, and morals? Or are they forever doomed to be nothing more than monsters, the product of a madman’s desires?

The Madman’s Daughter fascinated me. I couldn’t put it down from beginning to end. The content is shocking and a little grotesque, but it is still an amazing novel. I think this is definitely a must read as long as you think you can handle the twisted nature of Dr. Moreau’s work.

If you think The Madman’s Daughter sounds like your kind of novel, you can purchase it here:
Amazon
Audible
Barnes and Noble
IndieBound