Two young women, living centuries apart, both accused of madness, communicate across time to fight a common enemy...their doctors.
"It was the dog who found me."
Such is the stark confession launching the harrowing scene that begins The Asylum for Wayward Victorian Girls as Emilie Autumn, a young musician on the verge of a bright career, attempts suicide by overdosing on the antipsychotics prescribed to treat her bipolar disorder. Upon being discovered, Emilie is revived and immediately incarcerated in a maximum-security psych ward, despite her protestations that she is not crazy, and can provide valid reasons for her actions if someone would only listen.
Treated as a criminal, heavily medicated, and stripped of all freedoms, Emilie is denied communication with the outside world and falls prey to the unwelcome attentions of Dr. Sharp, head of the hospital's psychiatry department. As Dr. Sharp grows more predatory by the day, Emilie begins a secret diary to document her terrifying experience and to maintain her sanity in this environment that could surely drive anyone mad. But when Emilie opens her notebook to find a desperate letter from a young woman, imprisoned within an insane asylum in Victorian England and bearing her own name and description, a portal to another world is blasted wide open.
As these letters from the past continue to appear, Emilie escapes further into this mysterious alternate reality where sisterhoods are formed, romance between female inmates blossoms, striped wallpaper writhes with ghosts, and highly intellectual rats speak the Queen's English.
But is it real? Or is Emilie truly as mad as she is constantly told she is?
The Asylum for Wayward Victorian Girls blurs harsh reality and magical historical fantasy whilst issuing a scathing critique of society's treatment of women and the mental health care industry's treatment of its patients.
Welcome to the Asylum. Are you committed?
Das sagen andere Hörer zu The Asylum for Wayward Victorian Girls
Rezensionen - mit Klick auf einen der beiden Reiter können Sie die Quelle der Rezensionen bestimmen.
- Amazon Kunde
Highly unusual work
I'm a male sane well-off conservative german, so this bears no relation with my personal life experience, anyways it was captivating from the beginning to the end, truly great art! The author should be proud of themselves!
Even the bits of misandry here and there didn't manage to ruin it, instead they were besuiting the story, also a great insight in how contemporary liberal americans think.
The only negative thing about this for me is not having find this earlier. I was shocked that while already knowing of Emilie's music and loving it, I was somehow not aware of this brilliant book. I now really get what she says in the song "Girls! Girls! Girls!": "Some are born mad, some achieve madness, and some have madness thrust upon them!"
While Emilie's own story is crazy enough, the parallel story of Emily from the Victorian era is beyond mad ! It's definitely not for the light of heart. It's brutal, but unfortunately not that far from the reality of mental patients in the early days. Their treatment might have been less sadistic, but hardly more dignified.
Anyways, I can't praise the book enough and certainly not without spoilers. Just get it in print or here with her own voice reading (and wonderfully singing it too!). Just buy it now! Do it ! You know you wanna!
Treat yourself to something morbidly fantastic today.