Monday, November 1, 2010
The writing was good. I really don't have much to say about it - I don't think it's going to become a modern classic but I also had no problems with it. Nothing jumped out as anachronistic or inconsistent, which are usually the two big issues for me in historical fiction. Nothing to complain about in this one as far as the writing is concerned. I suppose you might say it was a little heavy on the feminism, but I like my feminism to be heavy, so I enjoyed it. At the same time, nothing really jumped out as remarkable.
Loved it! I was completely immersed in the story from the first page. The story fascinated me and I loved the Louisa's character. She is strong and not afraid to challenge the ideas and standards of her culture. I thought the story was great and has really made me even more interested in the issues of women's medical treatment during that period (which was also a plot element in another recent read - Dracula in Love).
A few reviews I read took issue with Louisa being a lesbian. Several people took issue with the fact that Louisa likes math and science and voices a desire to be a man. They said that this stereotypes lesbians and shows that they are necessarily masculine. I didn't see this in the book at all. Louisa does express a desire to be a man, but it is because of the limits placed on women at that time period. All in all, I didn't see that Louisa was an unbelievable or stereotypical character. I thought all of her actions suited her character and her history.
I definitely recommend you try this one out if you like historical fiction. Also, don't judge the book by the description or the cover - I didn't find either to be a very accurate representation of the book. It's definitely not what I would consider a romance and certainly not a bodice ripper. The main focus is on Louisa and her development as a character, not on her sexuality or her romantic relationships.
Posted by Julie G at 7:59 PM