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Publisher's Summary

Sixteen-year-old Juliet Moreau has built a life for herself in London - working as a maid, attending church on Sundays, and trying not to think about the scandal that ruined her life. After all, no one ever proved the rumors about her father's gruesome experiments. But when she learns he is alive and continuing his work on a remote tropical island, she is determined to find out if the accusations are true.

Accompanied by her father's handsome young assistant, Montgomery, and an enigmatic castaway, Edward - both of whom she is deeply drawn to - Juliet travels to the island, only to discover the depths of her father's madness: He has experimented on animals so that they resemble, speak, and behave as humans. And worse, one of the creatures has turned violent and is killing the island's inhabitants. Torn between horror and scientific curiosity, Juliet knows she must end her father's dangerous experiments and escape her jungle prison before it's too late. Yet as the island falls into chaos, she discovers the extent of her father's genius - and madness - in her own blood.

Inspired by H. G. Wells's classic The Island of Dr. Moreau, The Madman's Daughter is a dark and breathless Gothic thriller about the secrets we'll do anything to know and the truths we'll go to any lengths to protect.

©2013 Megan Shepherd (P)2013 HarperCollinsPublishers

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

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  • Gregory
  • DRYDEN, NY, United States
  • 03-21-14

A nicely executed twist on a classic

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

This is a grand time passing book. Will it unlock the secrets of the universe, or blow your mind? No. It's a good STORY. By contemporary standards, maybe a bit slow... but that's part of its charm. This takes a story from 19th century literature, and brings it forward a bit in style.

What was the most interesting aspect of this story? The least interesting?

The viewpoint shift to the 16 year old daughter, who is also highly analytical, provides a great point/counterpoint to the classic either-or viewpoint. Instead of a supremely mature storyteller, or a "oh no, she's not going to do THAT?!" version of the teen...we get to see a girl react with a split nature to emotional and moral quandaries... that force her to override her instinctive reactions with reasoning.

What does Lucy Rayner bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

Lucy approaches this book with a rare feel for pacing. Much as the 19th century feel gives it a slower pace than a modern book, Lucy does not rush, yet she clearly has a PURPOSE in her narration. She almost... STALKS her way through the book, careful, and precise, and not rushing, but with a sense of urgency behind the words.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

The 19th century science fiction of the story's seed remains, which always makes me chuckle. Much as with Star Trek, there's a bit of "well, we used a modified tachyon pulse!" simplicity to the science... which is very in keeping with the story's origin. "Simple dear fellow... a proper surgeon can accomplish anything!"

Any additional comments?

Well worth the time and money, you should not look for the next modern English MUST READ here, but you will not feel cheated in any way. If you do? You should re-evaluate your relationship to fiction.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

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A Dark, Mysterious, and Enjoyable Listen

What other book might you compare The Madman's Daughter to and why?

This is a retelling of The Island of Dr. Moreau.

What does Lucy Rayner bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

The voices and accents of the characters. She does a great job.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

Nothing extreme, but it definitely had me on the edge of my car seat on several occasions.

Any additional comments?

I really enjoyed this book, it was dark and mysterious and altogether bizarre. I loved the characters and the story, and I was intrigued the whole time. The book is not without it's faults though. I had a hard time suspending my belief with the nature of the experiments, and I'm not even a science person. But I can't go into detail and explain without giving away major spoilers so I'll just have to leave it at that. The same goes for the ending. Some might say it's a minor detail and easily overlooked, but to me it was like a waving red flag, and it made me seriously question Montgomery's and intelligence. Still, in spite of those flaws, I think the book is great and I can't wait to start book 2.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Too much romance for a non-romantic premise

One of my biggest pet peeves is when a promising story gives caves to a romance. This story was no exception. Juliet is smart, a survivor, has no hesitation in disfiguring a superior to avoid unwanted sexual attention- all the makings of a strong herione. Her father is a quack scientist with his own island where he conducts horrific experiments, but plot quickly starts focusing on her torn feelings between her father's young assistant and a young man that was rescued at sea.

Don't get me wrong, if I were younger and didn't mind a bit of romance, I would probably eat this up- but I lost interest 3 hours in. I can't finish it.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Really Bizarre

Any additional comments?

Now that book was bizarre! I don’t even know how to review this book. And how the heck does a book end like that? I wouldn’t say that I’m too shocked by the ending because I should have seen it coming from a mile away. But, really? What the heck is going to happen now? And how the heck is this whole thing going to work out? You’re probably wondering why I’m asking all this; well, how about you read The Madman’s Daughter and maybe then you can give me some answers.<br/><br/>I can’t decide what part of the book was most bizarre. I’m sitting here putting all the pieces of the story together in my head, but I just can’t decide. The beginning of the book had a number of very disturbing things that happened, but then there are other disturbing things, on a whole-nuther level of bizarre, that happen all throughout the story. Then there was this big revelation that I put together probably earlier than I should have (I think it was supposed to be a twist but it was also very bizarre), and then that ending. What? OK. Really? Whatever.<br/><br/>I could go through all the characters that I liked, disliked or I’m unsure about, but I want to refrain from spoilers. And telling you anything about the characters at all might cause a spoiler.<br/><br/>Once again we have a love triangle, but most of the time I was wondering what’s the point of the love triangle because it wasn’t really much of a competition. But I love how it was brought around full circle in the end. Very well done.<br/><br/>I’m really looking forward to knowing what’s going to happen to this person and that person…and what will happen to all the bizarre stuff...and all those things I can’t really talk about. LOL

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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Will be in my favorites list

This book is fabulous! Creepy and beautiful.
Started listening and my life stopped. I need more!!!

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Must Read

Would you consider the audio edition of The Madman's Daughter to be better than the print version?

Nothing could be better than holding the print in your hand and imagining the story, I'm old fashioned like that. But the performance was great i couldn't of asked for more.

What other book might you compare The Madman's Daughter to and why?

Not sure what to compare it with, it was like nothing i've ever read before. It could be compared to and suspense novel i suppose but this was so unique and so much more.

Which character – as performed by Lucy Rayner – was your favorite?

As the main character of the book i do like the way Juliet Moreau is portrayed, totally hooked me onto the story.<br/>Montgomery was also my favorite but that could also be due to how the author portrayed him in the story.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

There was alot of great moment, definitely one of my favorite new read. <br/>I liked the waterfall scene between Juliet and Edward.<br/>The lie scene where Juliet is forced to lie to Balthazar <br/>And the destruction scene in the laboratory. <br/><br/>these were strong and well described scene that stuck with me.

Any additional comments?

Loved it, the suspense the love triangle, everything was up to my expectation if not better. It is very twisted, in the best way possible.

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  • William
  • Lexington, NE, United States
  • 02-14-14

Interesting twist on a classic story

Was The Madman's Daughter worth the listening time?

I enjoyed The Madman's Daughter, but felt the main character was not consistent at times. I also thought the love triangle got a little romance novel silly at times, but overall worth the time.

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  • Alysia
  • Redondo Beach, CA, United States
  • 09-20-13

Not bad! Not great!

This book was a book of the month selection by my book club and I would have not read it with out it being brought to my attention. The Madman's Daughter is a story of Juliet Moreau. The last name sound familiar? It should because her papa is the famous Dr. Moreau of The Island of Dr. Moreau. Yep the same one. If you did not read it, don't worry you can still read this book and know what is going on. Juliet works as a maid at a medical college after her father leaves the family in the mist of a huge scandal to fend for themselves.
16 years old Juliet thinks her father is not dead despite the rumors when she runs into Montgomery, an ex-house servant of her family. This part was way to easy and feel into place to quickly for me. She just happens to find a small clue and runs to his hotel. BAM! There he is. WOW! That was easy. Anyways, Juliet quickly conveniences Montgomery to take her to her father. Once the author gets to the journey part of the story it gets good.
This audiobook has a lot of Victorian medical treatments and sensibilities that I thought were cute and very appropriate throughout the book.
As in most if not all YA books out now there is a love triangle. Yep, Juliet is (for most of the book) torn between Montgomery and Edward. I thought this one was well written because the reader feels a bit of her love for both and the confusion in picking one over the other. But I have to say that the whole boy issue seemed to be put in the story as an last minute item to make it YA. The book would have flowed better with out it.
Most bloggers/reviewer have labeled this book as horror but I don't see it the same way. To me Stephen King is horror and this was more of less kiddie scare due to the unseen monster that kills at random.
The narrator of this audiobook has a great young Scottish (?) accent that gives the book genuine quality.

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It just didn't have the OOMPF it needed

For the most part, I tend to listen to the recommendations of my friends – even when the books don’t sound particularly interesting. I’m not a big fan of the “classics” (maybe because I haven’t read that many of them?), but decided to give this book a chance because I usually like historical fictions and science fiction as well. And while this book was definitely different and I liked the premise, I didn’t feel like the story was that compelling. I mean, NOTHING happened so I got kind of bored – maybe I needed more of a plot-driven book, but the book was painfully slow.

Even with its slowness and lack of action, there are tons of morsels to take with you after you’ve finished reading.

Scientific progressiveness – in that time period, yes – but also think about science today and how much “innovation” there is. One man’s innovation is another man’s idea of unethical. Just google “vivisection”.

Men, beasts, civility, and savageness – and how all of these can be interwoven and are not always as they seem. How community plays into all of this.

Tons of biblical references. Juliet’s father playing God with creating these “beasts”. Laws and divine law. The idea that humans are by nature corrupt.

Like I said, lots of goodies to think about – but I just didn’t think that this book had the oompf it needed to capture the young adult audience’s attention. With that said, I did read the second book in the series, Her Dark Curiosity, which I found much better than this one.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Mrs.A
  • Chicago, IL United States
  • 05-17-13

exciting read

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

The book it not predictable -

Who was your favorite character and why?

Edward - full of mystery

Which character – as performed by Lucy Rayner – was your favorite?

all were well performed

If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

19th century incredible hulk tale

0 of 1 people found this review helpful