A Madness So Discreet

9 CDs. 9:34 hrs. Harper Audio. 2015. $24.99. ISBN 9780062434692.
Gr 9 Up—Seventeen-year-old Grace Mae's father is a powerful senator in the 19th century, and a scandal involving the family is simply out of the question; pregnant, unwed Grace is sent to an insane asylum. Her treatment there is utterly brutal, forcing a miscarriage, and Grace retreats into silence, refusing to utter a word. With the help of kind Dr. Thornhollow, Grace fakes her own death and escapes with Thornhollow to an asylum in Ohio where he is taking on a new position. In addition to his role at the asylum, he has a learned ability to read crime scenes well and has formed a partnership of sorts with the police to share forensic knowledge. Thornhollow sees in Grace a keen intellect and makes her a partner in his investigations. Soon they are on the hunt for a serial killer. Brittany Pressley's voices are vibrant and engaging. This story is engrossing from the start, and despite two odd plot twists toward the end of the book, this would make an excellent addition to any collection.
VERDICT Issues of incest, mental health, and medical ethics make this ripe for book discussions as well. Recommended. ["Fans of period pieces and crime dramas will be pleased with this haunting tale": SLJ 8/15 review of the Katherine Tegen book.]

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