Lovric's books are usually pretty damned entrancing and thought-provoking. So I decided to try this one too.
Also, the blurb said that it was about girls with uber-long hair. I have some uber-long hair myself (though not as long as theirs!) and wanted to see where this was going.
This is a relatively long review - because I clearly had a lot to say about this book. :)
This book has a real gothic vibe to it - and I love me some gothickyness! (Yes, I invented a word - shush.)
Between nineteenth century Ireland, and Lovric's beloved Venice (I have yet to find a Lovric book without Venice in some capacity,) my gothic-thirst was well and truly sated.
I also loved the way that 'modern' topics - celebrity, journalism, commercialism - are handled in a nineteenth century setting. It's fascinating.
And, of course, the hair.
I can vouch for the fact that sometimes people think of you as somehow being public property when you have long hair.
This can be sweet (like the little old lady behind me at the bank who just had to touch my rain-speckled hair because it was 'like diamonds,') or down-right creepy (for example, the middle-aged guy who stood behind me at a concert, and every so often gave the strands of my hair a sharp little tug, then acted innocent whenever I turned around to glare at him.)
And of course, there are plenty of people in between who think it's ok to twirl it around their fingers and paw at it in random places. Sometimes it is ok. Like, if I've ever actually met you before. Or if you ask, not just grab.
Lovric definitely captures the creepy - though not so much of the sweet.
Instead, the girls' hair seems a burden, weighing them down both literally and metaphorically throughout the book - which fits in with all the gothic stuff anyway I suppose.
Manticory is a really sympathetic and relatable narrator/character - and she's a bit bookish, which I always like to see.
A quick word about Darcy - she's just brilliantly psychopathic, and I love the way she provides such a manipulative influence on all the girls' lives, which they find themselves unable to break because of the ties of blood and family.
There's some gore, violence, and a bit of general warped disturbing-ness.
There is some sex, as well as some sexual assault on a child early on (which luckily isn't written overly-disturbingly, but obviously is still pretty unpleasant to read.)
It's also not a quick read - it's not that it drags, it doesn't - but, somehow, I just didn't get through it that quickly. Maybe it's the style or the fact that there's so much going on.
- Review Time! (Yay!) - Carnevale by Michelle Lovric
- Reviewing the Evidence Again! - The Book of Madness and Cures by Regina O'Melveny