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The Asylum

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A brilliant new Gothic thriller from the acclaimed author of The Ghost Writer and The SeanceConfused and disoriented Georgina Ferrars awakens in a small room in Tregannon House a private asylum in a remote corner of England She has no memory of the past few weeks The doctor Maynard Straker tells her that she admitted herself under the name Lucy Ashton the day before then suffered a seizure When she insists he ha I didn't enjoy The Asylum a historical fiction about a woman who wakes up in an asylum with memories that don't match the identity that the staff have assigned to herIt's probably just me I was listening to the audiobook on my way to and from work so I took this story in pieces rather than all at once The majority of the positive reviews seem to be from folks who devoured this in one sittingAlso things have been stressful at work So I brought that baggage to the table as wellThe part with the journal entries was particularly disjointed and confusing I think it was meant to be that way but it just didn't translate well to audiobookDon't let me deter you If it's a rainy cold day outside and you dig dark historical fiction you may truly enjoy The Asylum

Read & download å E-book, or Kindle E-pub á John Harwood

Only record of those missing weeks Georgina’s perilous uest to free herself takes us from a cliffside cottage on the Isle of Wight to the secret passages of Tregannon House and into a web of hidden family ties on which her survival depends Another delicious read from the author praised by Ruth Rendell as having “a gift for creating suspense apparently effortlessly as if it belongs in the nature of fiction I enjoy John Harwood books I've read his previous two but this one was by far my favorite of his thus far Ghost Writer was an exciting debut and Seance had some sopho slump mainly due to the fact that it was set in a current time Harwood writes gothic fiction so it really works best when it's set within a proper era Asylum works well because Harwood absolutely captures the age the setting the atmosphere the characters but particularly it is the relentless suspense the makes the book so impossible to put down Yes with Asylum John Harwood is chanelling Sarah Waters to an extent but in my book that is a compliment of the highest order because no one does victorian fiction like she can This book is also leaner and meaner than the author's previous works with excellent pacing and sinuous narrative that keeps the reader constantly guessing what's going on Harwood's no stranger to plot twists all of his stories feature them but with this one he really outdoes himself This one is a must for any fan of gothic fiction good mystery combination of both or just anyone really who enjoys a good well written story Highly recommended

John Harwood á 9 Read

S mistaken her for someone else Dr Straker sends a telegram to her uncle who replies that Georgina Ferrars is at home with him in London “Your patient must be an imposter” Suddenly her voluntary confinement becomes involuntary Who is the woman in her uncle’s house And what has become of her two most precious possessions a dragonfly pin left to her by her mother and a writing case containing her journal the This was a dark complicated and kind of confusing book There were a few times I had to reread a few pages as the story kind of felt jumpy to me Interesting story line I really hoped this was going to be a winner It fell short some Au croisement des cultures de droit occidentale et musulmane: Le pluralisme juridique dans le code tunisien des obligations et des contrats patient must be an imposter” Suddenly her voluntary confinement becomes involuntary Who is the woman in her uncle’s house And what has become of her two most Mariage et liberté: Étude comparative entre le droit français, tunisien et musulman precious FIGARO (LE) [No 4167] du 29/01/1958 - anastasia, grande-duchesse ou aventuriere par aucleres - loi-cadre algerie adoptee en seconde lecture a l'assemblee par gabilly le droit de greve et la fonction publique hebergement par ravon la citrouille , satellite de l'armee us serait lancee cette semaine par sauvage operations de police chez les etudiants musulmans de paris important jaillissement de petrole dansle sahara oriental - une ombre par guehenno conference du pacte de bagdad jacques guerard possessions a dragonfly Droit musulman : du statut personnel et des successions d'après les différents rites, (Éd.1895) pin left to her by her mother and a writing case containing her journal the This was a dark complicated and kind of confusing book There were a few times I had to reread a few Droit musulman - Des successions: D'après les différents rites, et plus particulièrement d'après le rite hanafite pages as the story kind of felt jumpy to me Interesting story line I really hoped this was going to be a winner It fell short some


10 thoughts on “The Asylum

  1. says:

    I won an ARC of The Asylum from a GR First Reads giveaway and it came at a great time for me the end of the semester when I needed some light escapist reading It may sound odd to call The Asylum light reading given its synopsis Georgina Ferrars wakes to find herself in Tregannon House a private asylum in Cornwall She meets Dr Maynard Straker who informs her that she arrived at the asylum having identified herself as Lucy Ashton She then suffered a seizure with left her with impaired short term memory she could remember her name her childhood her mother her aunt her uncle in London but she could not remember the last few weeks arriving at the asylum or even the clothes or bags she found in her room Throughout the first section of the novel Georgina tries frantically to establish her identity in the face of skepticism from Dr Straker from Frederic Mordaunt the young melancholic whose uncle owned Tregannon House and from asylum staff Even her uncle sends a telegram saying that Georgina Ferrars is in residence in his house in London and that the patient in the asylum must be an imposter Harwood has written other books inspired by Victorian novels The Asylum features staples of the genre women in peril mistaken identities complex and hidden relationships among characters and the roots of present day conflicts stemming from past tragedies Ferrars emerges as an overly trusting but strong and intelligent woman who in the end relies on her wits to seek a way out of her confinement Harwood's pacing moves the narrative along and his inclusion of a second section consisting of old letters and recent journal entries provides an effective means to answer uestions about the relationship of the distant and recent past to Georgina's present predicament However the last section becomes uite unbelievable even by the standards of these novels which themselves are built on complex genealogies incredible coincidences and hidden motives There is a sense of Harwood's rushing to find resolution for the novel which is jarring after the way he built dramatic tension in the first two sections of the novel The villain who ultimately emerges comes across as a two dimensional stock figure 35 stars for the first two sections 2 for the last section leading me to a final somewhat generous 3 star rating


  2. says:

    I didn't enjoy The Asylum a historical fiction about a woman who wakes up in an asylum with memories that don't match the identity that the staff have assigned to herIt's probably just me I was listening to the audiobook on my way to and from work so I took this story in pieces rather than all at once The majority of the positive reviews seem to be from folks who devoured this in one sittingAlso things have been stressful at work So I brought that baggage to the table as wellThe part with the journal entries was particularly disjointed and confusing I think it was meant to be that way but it just didn't translate well to audiobookDon't let me deter you If it's a rainy cold day outside and you dig dark historical fiction you may truly enjoy The Asylum


  3. says:

    This might have been a better experience if Fingersmith and Sarah Waters didn't exist But they do And the complexity of writing and emotion and character development here pale in comparison Probably not helped by the fact that the audiobook narrator Rosalyn Landor does better at voicing secondary characters than the primary female ones They not only sound indistinguishable from one another but are all voiced in strangely placid style though you really don't get to know them all that well either Overall I felt very removed from both the story and the characters which is uite something considering the various events and circumstances that are meant to be shocking view spoilerHey I slept with my half sister who schemed to take my inheritance away from me hide spoiler


  4. says:

    Goodreads tells me I have had this John Harwood's third novel on my wishlist since October last year So obviously when I received an ARC of The Asylum I immediately got stuck into it despite the frustratingly late UK release date of 20th June it comes out in May in the US and I couldn't put it down until I'd finished This is an addictively readable and deliciously compelling gothic mystery which grabs your attention on the first page and refuses to let goThe book opens circa 1882 with a young woman Georgina Ferrars waking up in an unfamiliar room At first believing her surroundings are a dream she soon comes to realise she is an inmate in a lunatic asylum Tregannon House with the chief doctor insisting she has admitted herself under the name Lucy Ashton Unable to recall any memory of the past few days she is convinced it's all a terrible mistake until her uncle with whom she lives sends a telegram to the asylum saying the 'real' Georgina is safe and well at homeThe plot and structure are both pretty simple Georgina tells her own story relating her frustration disbelief and attempts to get out of the asylum with an interlude devoted to a number of letters written some years earlier by a cousin of Georgina's mother The story is breathlessly fast paced and very exciting despite the limited scope of the setting and the fact that Georgina acts as the narrator adds a further layer of intrigue for the reader is her conviction that the 'other' Georgina is an impostor reliable? As the evidence mounts up against her and she struggles to remember even the smallest detail of the weeks leading up to her arrival at Tregannon the reader is led to believe she may indeed be deluded or genuinely insane yet she remains such a likeable sympathetic character that it's impossible not to hope for her to escape There are shades of Sarah Waters' work particularly Fingersmith in some of the relationships that develop and in the highly emotive depiction of Georgina's imprisonment and some of the explanations are uite ingenious in their detail while also being simple enough to believeThe only thing really wrong with The Asylum is that its ending spirals out of control a bit and isn't anywhere near as enjoyable as the rest of the story As with Harwood's debut The Ghost Writer it feels as if the author isn't uite sure how to end the book this results in some rather silly things happening and the 'bad guy' behaving like a pantomime villain giving conveniently lengthy explanations of all his dastardly plans to anyone within earshot I also found it highly unlikely that view spoilerGeorgina's mother would have instructed the lawyer that Georgina should only receive the letters if she became engaged to Felix why on earth would she have ever thought this was a possibility when it was so unlikely the two would ever even meet? hide spoiler


  5. says:

    The majority of this book was a 4 star read for me because I found it so enthralling The ending was a bit rushed and it was hard to keep track of all the names and people within the story Overall I had a good time It makes me want to read gothic Victorian books


  6. says:

    This was a dark complicated and kind of confusing book There were a few times I had to reread a few pages as the story kind of felt jumpy to me Interesting story line I really hoped this was going to be a winner It fell short some


  7. says:

    No one writes Gothic uite like John Harwood His ability to capture the mood atmosphere and s of the classics is without eual while avoiding the florid excesses that plagued the subgenre And with The Asylum he has produced one of the best Gothic mysteries I've read in years filled with a creeping paranoia and genuine chillsHighly recommended


  8. says:

    Deeply disappointed in this latest John Harwood offering I read The Seance by this same author and was captivated by that one passed it on to my daughter who also gave it the thumbs up I found The Asylum confusing dark and gloomy throughout The story set in the 1800's moves between past and present centering around Georgia Ferrars our key character Georgia wakes up in an asylum without knowing how she came to be there As she gives her account of what she knows what follows at the end of her tale are the versions of other central characters each adding their own drama Women running away from opressive males is not new Written in three parts the author does a good job of tieing it all up in the end Getting to the end was like climbing uphill carrying a large bag of rocks I could find no character that particularly stood out or could pull me into the story Each of them I trust was uite mad in their own way leaving me mad that I wasted my time


  9. says:

    I enjoy John Harwood books I've read his previous two but this one was by far my favorite of his thus far Ghost Writer was an exciting debut and Seance had some sopho slump mainly due to the fact that it was set in a current time Harwood writes gothic fiction so it really works best when it's set within a proper era Asylum works well because Harwood absolutely captures the age the setting the atmosphere the characters but particularly it is the relentless suspense the makes the book so impossible to put down Yes with Asylum John Harwood is chanelling Sarah Waters to an extent but in my book that is a compliment of the highest order because no one does victorian fiction like she can This book is also leaner and meaner than the author's previous works with excellent pacing and sinuous narrative that keeps the reader constantly guessing what's going on Harwood's no stranger to plot twists all of his stories feature them but with this one he really outdoes himself This one is a must for any fan of gothic fiction good mystery combination of both or just anyone really who enjoys a good well written story Highly recommended


  10. says:

    “Asylum” is a throwback to the 19th century when Sensationalist writers were all the rage Think Collins’s “The Moonstone” or even better Braddon’s “Lady Audley’s Secret” or Mrs Henry Wood’s “East Lynne” I love this genre and I’m glad to see Harwood embracing it There are secrets galore and you’re never on solid ground with this story I was continually guessing and then second guessing where the plot was heading and trying to understand which characters were reliableThe narrative goes back and forth in time and lots of the story is told through letters and diary entries which proves to be an enticing ploy There’s madness everywhere but is it real? Those who seem to be nuts might just be the most sane and vice versa No one’s motives are a givenafter all happiness love AND money are involved Harwood is a master at building atmosphere from the crashing of the sea to the lonely moors and then through the halls of an insane asylum All of them figure in this plot This is a fun bookThis review is based on an advance readers copy supplied by the publisherDisclaimer given per FTC reuirement


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