The Strange Case of the Alchemist’s Daughter is based on several Victorian-era horror stories, told through the five daughters, biological or otherwise, of the original main characters. It is primarily a mystery, or several mysteries, with a good bit of the original horror mixed in.
This story is the first in a series, since the second one has been published, and as such spends much of its time setting the stage. Largely through flashbacks, each of the “daughter’s” story is told. In addition to the five young women, there is a housekeeper, a scullery maid, and in the epilogue, two more “daughters.” In addition, Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson also make appearances, and are two of the very few men in this book who are portrayed in a positive light.
Part of that, of course, is the time in which the novel is set, but part is the premise of the novel. All of these women have been created and then abandoned, or escaped destruction, by their monstrous, alchemist fathers.
All of the above makes the book sound dreary and dull, but nothing could be farther from the truth. It’s a romp! And I’m looking forward to the second adventure of the Athena Club.
Goss, Theodora. The Strange Case of the Alchemist’s Daughter. New York: Saga Press, 2017. Kindle edition. Amazon.
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