Thursday, March 3, 2016

The Secrets of LIzzie Borden by Brandy Purdy

In her enthralling, richly imagined new novel, Brandy Purdy, author of The Ripper’s Wife, creates a compelling portrait of the real, complex woman behind an unthinkable crime.

Lizzie Borden should be one of the most fortunate young women in Fall River, Massachusetts. Her wealthy father could easily afford to provide his daughters with fashionable clothes, travel, and a rich, cultured life. Instead, haunted by the ghost of childhood poverty, he forces Lizzie and her sister, Emma, to live frugally, denying them the simplest modern conveniences. Suitors and socializing are discouraged, as her father views all gentleman callers as fortune hunters. 

Lonely and deeply unhappy, Lizzie stifles her frustration, dreaming of the freedom that will come with her eventual inheritance. But soon, even that chance of future independence seems about to be ripped away. And on a stifling August day in 1892, Lizzie’s long-simmering anger finally explodes…

Vividly written and thought-provoking, The Secrets of Lizzie Borden explores the fascinating events behind a crime that continues to grip the public imagination—a story of how thwarted desires and desperate rage could turn a dutiful daughter into a notorious killer.

The story of Lizzie Borden and the murder of her parents have fascinated generations. Did she or didn't she do it? This question circulates to this very day. Now, Brandy Purdy has stepped up and wrote a compelling biographical novel about Lizzie Borden, her life, and her dark motivations. Anyone who reads a novel by Brandy Purdy must be prepared for a grippingly well told story that often bend the facts to enhance the story. And that's what I love most about Brandy Purdy! She knows how to spin a tale and make it soar. She definitely did just that with The Secrets of Lizzie Borden.

By using a very person, first personal narrative, the author knows how to delve deep inside her protaganists thoughts and emotions to make them larger than life, and that's what stands out the most about this novel. Lizzie Borden became so real that I truly felt I understood her and why she did what she did. I instinctively knew that I was not supposed to like or hate her - rather to comprehend her motivations. 

This book definitely left me haunted, exposed to conflicting feelings of loathing and understanding. And that's the sign of a great book. For anyone who loves biographical murder mysteries and novels set in Victorian times, then this is a book you have to read. Compelling, engrossing, shocking! I loved it.

Thank you to the author and publisher. I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
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