Displaying items by tag: debut novel

Authors Writing on Books
The Palace of Curiosities – reviewed by Max Scratchmann

Much as I want to like all of these books, there are, I'm afraid, a lot of fairly dull bodice-rippers and penny-dreadfuls lurking beneath the stunning cover art on the slew of mock-Victorian novels currently on the market, so it was with great joy that I discovered Rosie Garland's noir tale of life in a nineteenth-century freak show – The Palace of Curiosities.

Enticed by the gothic delicacy of cover art and then seduced by the Angela Carter comparison from Jenny Murray on the flyleaf, I delved into this novel with a mixture of anticipation and cautious scepticism – treating the alluring enticements to enter as nothing more than the world-weary siren call of an over zealous marketing man. But, miraculously, I was not disappointed this time, and though the wonderful Ms Garland, in fact, bears little resemblance to Angela Carter – she's far too original a voice to be a copy of anybody – The Palace of Curiosities is a dark and evocative exploration of the underbelly of Victorian society and a magic-realist journey through the fair grounds and freak shows that so fascinate this reviewer as a visual artist.

The novel follows the converging path of two outsiders, Eve the Lion Girl and Abel the Flayed Man – also known as Mr Lazarus – and takes us on an atmospheric journey that veers in and out of the (believable) supernatural and even manages a happy ending without ever once delving into sentimentality or sugary cliché. The writing is rich and verging on the poetic, and the characters are well-rounded and believable – Eve's story being particularly strong with a heady erotic undercurrent running throughout.

I very seldom resort to overblown kill-to-obtain-this-book soundbites, but this novel is a definite must-read. Highly recommended.

Max Scratchmann

Book: THE PALACE OF CURIOSITIES

Author: Rosie Garland

Publisher: HarperCollins

Click to go to Steve Savage's review site

Published in News

Suzi Feay has given 'The Palace of Curiosities' an amazing review on the Emerald Steet blog!

WOMEN YOU SHOULD KNOW ABOUT

Two events make this weekend a goodie: International Women's Day and the launch of the inaugural Folio Prize Fiction Festival. There are events celebrating both occasions all weekend but tomorrow, the two overlap at On Reading Women, a discussion on literary heroines with authors Tessa Hadley and Frances Wilson, and literary critic Suzi Feay. There are still tickets left. Can't make it? Don't worry; Suzi has shared her favourite up-and-coming female fiction writers with us...

THE PALACE OF CURIOSITIES

BY ROSIE GARLAND (HARPERCOLLINS, £14.99)

"In this fabulously strange historical debut, a hair-covered young girl with the face of a lioness runs off to join a Victorian freak show and falls in love with a man who cuts himself. Throw in a super-creepy villain and you have a romp filled with sheer, demented fun."

Click here to go to Emerald Street site

Published in News

Many thanks to Cat Lumb for her blog review of The Palace of Curiosities paperback launch at the Manchester Museum for Manchester Literature Festival!

Excerpt here:

"When I asked her what had kept her going when it didn't seem like her book was ever going to be published she answered with a plain and direct: 'Bloody-mindedness'.

She spoke about how she couldn't stop writing even if no one ever got to see her work – something I have to say, I agree with. She was fortunate to have very supportive friends and the dedication inside the opening page reflects this: To everyone who believed I could get here, even when I didn't. This, I have to admit, is one of the more touching dedications I have seen in a long while."

Read the full review here:

Click link for Cat Lumb's site

Published in News
Friday, 18 October 2013 09:31

8.10.2013 - The Skinny feature and interview

Really pleased to have an interview & feature in The Skinny this month!

It's free to pick up in venues round Liverpool & Manchester during October, or click on the link below and go to 'current issues'.

The Skinny - main website

Published in News
The Palace of Curiosities - paperback available from 26th September 2013
Published in Gig List

Gay's the Word bookshop is delighted to host this event celebrating publication of The Palace of Curiosities, the incredible début novel from Rosie Garland (aka the performer Rosie Lugosi).

Gay's The Word,

66 Marchmont Street, London WC1N 1AB, UK

Thursday, 9 May 2013

19:00 until 21:00

Event Entry £2 - complimentary refreshments - please RSVP here on Facebook.

"The Palace of Curiosities is a jewel-box of a novel, with page after page, scene after scene, layer after layer of treats and surprises. Garland is a real literary talent."

- Sarah Waters

Set in Victorian London, this luminous and bewitching debut is a profound love story lurking in the boundaries of what is perceived as human...

"Gentlemen and Ladies! How happy I am to welcome you to this Palace of Curiosities on such an auspicious occasion. What luck! What serendipity! For tonight we have mirth! Wit! And Jollity! See The Lion-Faced Woman and The Marsyas of Modern Times, Star Attractions at Professor Arroner's Astonishing Marvels!"

Published in Gig List

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