Saturday, April 22, 2017

The Anatomist's Wife

I don't know why it took me so long to read The Anatomist's Wife by Anna Lee Huber, especially considering it contains so many of the elements that I really like in a book. For example, it's a mystery with suspense, atmosphere, and good writing. And it's set in Scotland in 1830, a time period and place that I love. But most of all, it has well-crafted and memorable characters like Mr. Sebastian Gage and Huber's most engaging of protagonists, the infamous Lady Darby, who also narrates the story. I ended up really liking this intrepid heroine. Here are five passages from the book that'll show you why:


Death was not unfamiliar to me. I had seen more than my fair share of corpses in my lifetime, and I had been quite happy to escape them for the last sixteen months. So I hardly relished the appearance of yet another one, and in my sister's garden no less. I shivered, feeling the fear and shadows stir inside me I had worked so hard to lay to rest since my husband's death.

I had never been very successful at the art of flirtation. I knew my sister was quite capable, having listened to her and Philip verbally banter with one another daily for over a year. My brother Trevor also seemed competent in the arena, if the number of young ladies in London angling for a marriage proposal from him were any indication. I, on the other hand, seemed to be missing that mysterious skill.

It didn't matter what Gage believed. I knew that I was innocent, and so did my sister and brother-in-law. All I could do was focus on what I had set out to do in the first place--protect my sister and her family by finding the real killer--and in the process, prove my innocence, perhaps once and for all.

Several hours in my studio did much to soothe my tattered nerves worn raw by the events of the last sixteen hours. The familiar roughness of the charcoal in my hand as I sketched the outline of a new portrait comforted me. Its musk of earth and ashes permeated the air, clearing away the lingering memory of blood and death. I lost myself in the sweep of lines, forgetting time and place.

I had always known that I was a solitary person. Even when wed to Sir Anthony, even while living with my sister and her family, I knew the truth. I was alone. And likely would always be. That normally did not trouble me, but lately I had begun to feel the weight of such a truth, the isolation of such a life, and it upset me more than I would have liked to admit. But I didn't know how to change that. My temperament, my talent, seemed to naturally hold me apart from others. The scandal had only exacerbated the problem.

Happy Reading!

10 comments:

  1. I like the sound of this one. Fun way to share about a story.

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    1. Thanks! I thought it was a fun read. :)

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  2. This one sounds like a good read, Lark. And I like how you include those passages in your review. :)

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    1. Sometimes the author's own words are the best recommendation. :)

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  3. I enjoyed this one, but I like the Crowther/Westerman series by Imogen Robertson better. Maybe because I've followed it from the first book, but I like the eccentric Gabriel Crowther as the reclusive anatomist. Have you tried this series?

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    1. No, I haven't, but if you like it even better than this book I think I need to. :) And I did like Robertson's book The Paris Winter. Do you remember the title of the first Gabriel Crowther book?

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  4. This sounds really good. *Sigh* Another one to add to my TBR mountain chain. So many books, so little time ...

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    1. :D Mountain is a good word to describe my TBR list, too. It just keeps growing and growing...I'll never get them all read.

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  5. Oh yes, those passages definitely do make me want to read this one.

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