Did She Kill Him?: A Victorian tale of deception, adultery and arsenic by Kate Colquhoun

Review published on April 24, 2015.Reviewed by Gwen Percival

Nudge Reviewer Rating:

Unfortunately I just couldn’t get into this book, I was hoping for something similar to The Suspicions of Mr Whicher, however I didn’t find this as easy to read or to engage with.  It is a mix of fact and fiction, Colquhoun filling in the imagined gaps between historical evidence and personal evidence from the main ‘character’ Florence Maybrick, a Victorian American housewife who married a man many years her senior and in hope of a better life in England.  Obviously the reality of her life was much more stifling than she was hoping or expecting.  I didn’t get very far into the novel, as I found that the story just didn’t flow; the mix of fiction with factual background wasn’t seamless and it felt like an odd mix of historical notes on the lack of power women had at that time in society and Florence’s own story.  I would attempt it in a book club setting purely for the mix of factual background as I think it would provide a good discussion base, but I would have to be more interested in the time period to fully appreciate the novel.

– Gwen Percival

Did She Kill Him? by Kate Colquhoun, published by Abacus on 15th January, 2015 at £8.99

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