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Asylum [Anglais] [Broché]

John Harwood

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Descriptions du produit

Revue de presse

"A deliciously spooky pastiche of the high and low Gothic traditions and the tender heroines who live and die by them."
New York Times Book Review

"Harwood, master of creeping Victorian horror, does it again. . . Twisted in every sense of the word and wonderfully atmospheric, this dark psychological tale shocks by degree until truth of a sort is revealed in a style similar to that of Joanne Harris' Sleep, Pale Sister and D.J. Taylor's Kept."
Booklist

"Harwood evokes Charles Palliser and Louis Bayard in his engrossing third stand-alone Victorian thriller. . . The crisp prose and twisty plot will encourage many to read this in one sitting."
Publishers Weekly

"With Harwood's beguiling pastiche The Asylum, we're once again in a contemporary version of the Victorian Gothic mystery, with a lineage that stretches back to Wilkie Collins's The Woman in White and beyond. Though it's not a comfortable place for the beleaguered heroine, readers are guaranteed a thoroughly diverting time in Harwood's not-to-be-trusted hands." 

--The Independent (UK)

"A deliciously spooky pastiche of the high and low Gothic traditions and the tender heroines who live and die by them."
New York Times Book Review

"Harwood, master of creeping Victorian horror, does it again. . . Twisted in every sense of the word and wonderfully atmospheric, this dark psychological tale shocks by degree until truth of a sort is revealed in a style similar to that of Joanne Harris' Sleep, Pale Sister and D.J. Taylor's Kept."
Booklist

"Harwood evokes Charles Palliser and Louis Bayard in his engrossing third stand-alone Victorian thriller. . . The crisp prose and twisty plot will encourage many to read this in one sitting."
Publishers Weekly

"With Harwood's beguiling pastiche The Asylum, we're once again in a contemporary version of the Victorian Gothic mystery, with a lineage that stretches back to Wilkie Collins's The Woman in White and beyond. Though it's not a comfortable place for the beleaguered heroine, readers are guaranteed a thoroughly diverting time in Harwood's not-to-be-trusted hands." 

--The Independent (UK)

"A deliciously spooky pastiche of the high and low Gothic traditions and the tender heroines who live and die by them."
New York Times Book Review

"Harwood, master of creeping Victorian horror, does it again. . . Twisted in every sense of the word and wonderfully atmospheric, this dark psychological tale shocks by degree until truth of a sort is revealed in a style similar to that of Joanne Harris' Sleep, Pale Sister and D.J. Taylor's Kept."
Booklist

"Harwood evokes Charles Palliser and Louis Bayard in his engrossing third stand-alone Victorian thriller. . . The crisp prose and twisty plot will encourage many to read this in one sitting."
Publishers Weekly

Présentation de l'éditeur

“Harwood, master of creeping Victorian horror, does it again . . . Twisted in every sense of the word and wonderfully atmospheric.”—Booklist

Confused and disoriented, Georgina Ferrars awakens in a small room in Tregannon House, a remote asylum in England. She has no memory of the past few weeks. The doctor, Maynard Straker, tells her that she admitted herself under the name Lucy Ashton, then suffered a seizure. When she insists he has mistaken her for someone else, Dr. Straker sends a telegram to her uncle, who replies that Georgina Ferrars is at home with him in London: “Your patient must be an imposter.” Suddenly her voluntary confinement becomes involuntary. Who is the woman in her uncle’s house? Georgina’s perilous quest to free herself takes us from a cliffside cottage on the Isle of Wight to the secret passages of Tregannon House and into a web of hidden family ties on which her survival depends.

“Redolent with a sense of foreboding . . . This gothic tale will sweep you up into the very heart of Victorian England. A splendid read!”—Historical Novel Society, Editors’ Choice

“A richly textured . . . [and] masterfully constructed narrative . . . Readers are guaranteed a thoroughly diverting time in Harwood’s not-to-be-trusted hands.”—The Independent (UK)

“The crisp prose and twisty plot will encourage many to read this in one sitting.”—Publishers Weekly

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Commentaires client les plus utiles sur Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 3.9 étoiles sur 5  71 commentaires
29 internautes sur 30 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 One of my favorite writers of Gothic suspense 17 avril 2013
Par sb-lynn - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Relié|Commentaire client Vine pour produit gratuit (De quoi s'agit-il?)
Brief summary and review, no spoilers:

This terrific Victorian gothic novel start out with 21 year old Georgina Ferrars waking up in a room in an insane asylum in Cornwall. Georgina has no working memory of how she got to this room, and her situation is made all the worse when she finds out that everyone there thinks she is a woman named Lucy Ashton. Indeed every indication is that she is Lucy; so why are all her memories of Georgina? And why when she asks the doctor to wire her uncle to verify her identity both he and the maids indicate that Georgina is there with him and never left and that the woman in the asylum is an impostor?

I think it's important with any novel not to give away spoilers, but even more so with this one. Harwood lays the clues out for the reader and it would really spoil the fun to find out anything prematurely. Suffice it to say that the book goes back and forth in time as we figure out the truth and solve this puzzle. If you've read this author before you know we get information and clues often by intriguing letters and characters backstories.

So why do I say John Harwood is one of my favorite authors? Because I cannot think of an author who writes gothic as well as he does. He sets a mood like no other, and once you open this novel you will not be able to put it down and there are times when your heart is just racing. It is after 2:00am here and I just finished because I had to know what happened next.

He plays fair and square with the clues but I do caution that you have to read this book carefully - if you skim you will miss out.

One of my top reads of all time was this author's first book, The Ghost Writer That too was a book that took careful reading (and in fact I had to read The Ghost Writer twice to completely figure it out) but boy was it worth it. The second book, The Seance was good, but in my opinion The Ghost Writer and this book are better.

Highly recommended. You know that wonderful reader's "high" that you get when you've read something really special and been transported to another place and time? Well, I'm feeling that buzz right now. Just a fun, great read and a compulsive page-turner.
12 internautes sur 13 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 Victorian-style Gothic novel, ingenious but a bit confusing 31 mars 2013
Par Alan A. Elsner - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Relié|Commentaire client Vine pour produit gratuit (De quoi s'agit-il?)
John Harwood has breathed new life into the Victorian Gothic novel and with this latest entry he seems to be channeling the spirit of Wilkie Collins. Almost every trope of that genre is deployed and the result is a rich stew that will keep readers hooked, if a little confused, until the final page.

Our young protagonist, Georgina Ferrars, finds herself mysteriously in an asylum on the edge of Bodmin Moor in Cornwall with no memory of how she got there. The doctor, Maynard Straker, tells her she was admitted under the name of Lucy Ashton -- but that is almost certainly an assumed name since it came from Sir Walter Scott's novel, The Bride of Lammermoor. Georgina asks the doctor to contact her uncle to verify her identity but the uncle telegrams back that his niece is at home with him in London. So who is Georgina, aka Lucy, and how did she come to arrive in the asylum? And who is impersonating her back in London? Or perhaps, Georgina is not Georgina and has invented the whole thing.

We go back in time a generation and meet Rosina Wentworth, who seems to be connected somehow to Georgina -- but we don't know how. We had previously learned how Georgina developed as a young girl a kind of alter ego whom she called Rosina, a wilder, braver version of herself. The real Rosina, we learn, is trapped in a home with an unkind father who wishes to marry her off to the highest bidder. She plots her escape through the agency of a suspiciously oily but handsome young man, Felix Mordaunt. And we know from Georgina's narration that the asylum in which she is locked is owned by the Mordaunt family. Everything is connected, we realize, but until the end of the book we are not to know how.

Incidentally, the author's choice of the name "Mordaunt" is interesting since that name was notorious in the 1860s after a man called Sir Charles Mordaunt involved Prince Albert Edward, The Prince of Wales (later King Edward VII), in his divorce case.

Back to the book: The plot is constructed like one of those Russian Matryoshka dolls where each figure conceals a smaller one inside. Whenever we the readers, learn something, the mystery only deepens. Georgina begins to wonder if she is sane. She sounds, through her narration, increasingly paranoid -- but that doesn't mean that someone is not after her. And if so, why?

Almost all the traditional scenes of this genre are employed in this artful novel. The tone sounds right for the era and we get the dark and stormy nights, the rain crashing down on the bare moors, the orphaned heroine, the wicked doctor, the characters with a streak of congenital insanity running through the family, the caddish male and even a hint of the love that dare not speak its name. I detected homages to both Charlotte and Emily Bronte and Mary Shelley among others.

It's all quite enjoyable and one keeps reading to see how it will be resolved. But I do confess I was confused by the end and somewhat deflated by the ending which lurched too far into melodrama for my personal liking.
11 internautes sur 12 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
3.0 étoiles sur 5 Excellent until the ending . . . 19 juin 2013
Par bookworm21 - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Relié
I have read several of Harwood's books, and as a lover of Gothic fiction, I can attest that he knows how to weave a solid story. This novel was excellent right until the climax of the action at which point I checked to make sure that my book wasn't missing pages. The antagonist did what? The one person in the room with all the power and weapons did what?! I went back and reread it -- yep, that's what I thought I read. Maybe some such outcome had to take place, but it was so sudden that my suspension of reality was broken.

Otherwise, the details of this story were wonderful, expertly laid out, and fascinating. Harwood soared past all of my guesses and wove a tale that made me unable to put the book down. I can't say don't read it because, outside of the climax, I was very entertained; however, this book should be used as an example of how NOT to get rid of your antagonist. I recall a similar, but not quite as stunning, wrapping up of events in The Ghost Writer. Again, that book was excellent until the climax. The Seance ended a bit more strongly. I'll continue to read Harwood's work in hopes that he perfects exiting the tale as well as he has perfecting setting it up. If you're looking for a great modern Gothic novel, try The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield.
6 internautes sur 7 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
2.0 étoiles sur 5 Plodding Gothic Mystery 14 juin 2013
Par C. Baker - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Relié|Commentaire client Vine pour produit gratuit (De quoi s'agit-il?)
I really liked Harwood's The Ghost Writer but The Asylum just didn't do it for me. It starts off with a young woman named Georgina Ferrars who wakes up in an asylum in the middle of nowhere and she has no idea why she's there or how she got there. The novel goes on from there at a very slow, rather tepid, and uninteresting pace as they mysteries unravel. But frankly, the whole plot is just too slow to unfold, and while mildly interesting also highly unlikely.

Overall I'd have passed on this one.
2 internautes sur 2 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
3.0 étoiles sur 5 Too much build up 24 octobre 2013
Par Pamela J Weingart - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Format Kindle|Achat vérifié
A little too descriptive and detailed. Just get on with the story. By the time I got to the ending, it was "thank god something happened".
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