Saturday 5 July 2014

The Quick - Lauren Owen

Random House UK
Vintage Publishing

The magic and menace of Victorian London is brought to life in this ambitious debut novel which takes the hazards and dangers of living in the underbelly of society and converts them into a story which abounds with trickery and mystery.

James Norbury, and his sister Charlotte are separated in their early childhood, when James, like all well brought up young men, is sent to complete his education away from home. Recently down from Oxford, James finds lodgings in London with a young aristocrat. James explores the Victorian world of love through poetry but when he unexpectedly disappears, Charlotte sets off to find out just what has happened to James. What then follows is a dark and sinister look at Victorian society where all is often not as it seems.

To say more about the story would give away far too much and this is one of those books which should to be read in its entirety without any prior knowledge. On the whole, for a debut novel, I thought it was a job well done. I wasn’t riveted throughout the whole of the story – some parts of the epistolary exchange, which occurs later in the story, I found to be rather tedious, but as a venture into the dark and sinister world of Victorian melodrama, it earns its place as a reasonable, if slightly underwhelming story.


My thanks to NetGalley and Random House, UK Vintage Publishing for my ecopy of this book

About the Author

Lauren Owen


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