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A Madness So Discreet

A Madness So Discreet

Escrito por Mindy McGinnis

Narrado por Brittany Pressley


A Madness So Discreet

Escrito por Mindy McGinnis

Narrado por Brittany Pressley

valoraciones:
4/5 (42 valoraciones)
Longitud:
9 horas
Editorial:
Publicado:
Oct 6, 2015
ISBN:
9780062434692
Formato:
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Descripción

Grace Mae knows madness.

She keeps it locked away, along with her voice, trapped deep inside a brilliant mind that cannot forget horrific family secrets. Those secrets, along with the bulge in her belly, land her in a Boston insane asylum.

When her voice returns in a burst of violence, Grace is banished to the dark cellars, where her mind is discovered by a visiting doctor who dabbles in the new study of criminal psychology. With her keen eyes and sharp memory, Grace will make the perfect assistant at crime scenes. Escaping from Boston to the safety of an ethical Ohio asylum, Grace finds friendship and hope, hints of a life she should have had. But gruesome nights bring Grace and the doctor into the circle of a killer who stalks young women. Grace, continuing to operate under the cloak of madness, must hunt a murderer while she confronts the demons in her own past.

In this beautifully twisted historical thriller, Mindy McGinnis, acclaimed author of Not a Drop to Drink and In a Handful of Dust, explores the fine line between sanity and insanity, good and evil-and the madness that exists in all of us.

Editorial:
Publicado:
Oct 6, 2015
ISBN:
9780062434692
Formato:
Audiolibro

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Sobre el autor

Mindy McGinnis is the author of Not a Drop to Drink and its companion, In a Handful of Dust, as well as This Darkness Mine, The Female of the Species, Given to the Sea, Heroine, and the Edgar Award–winning novel A Madness So Discreet. A graduate of Otterbein University with a BA in English literature and religion, Mindy lives in Ohio. You can visit her online at www.mindymcginnis.com.


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  • (4/5)
    An interesting look at asylums in the 1800s? in the United States, this book took a twist towards then end that really surprised me.
  • (5/5)
    An addictive read

    I picked this book up and couldn't put it down. I was almost late back to work because I was lost in the pages while reading it over my lunch break. I stayed up late at night just to read more of the book even though I was tired. I look forward to seeing more great books from this writer.
  • (4/5)
    A Madness So Discreet by Mindy McGinnis was not completely what I expected. I expected a dark story, which I got, but I also got a sleuths story. Within this dark and violent story I got a procedural crime story of sorts. Think a mixture of Criminal Minds, Law & Order, the SVU one, a little CSI and any show with a crazy person solving crimes, but set in the late 1800’s without all the modern day equipment. Just keen observations and the use of new crime solving techniques, according to the secondary character, Dr. Thornhollow, was first used during the Jack The Ripper murders. Crime solving procedures we today call, Profiling, Motive, and Crime Scene Investigation.

    Grace is our protagonist and I quickly learned that she has suffered some horrific things before being placed in an asylum to hide a pregnancy, which she didn’t come by willing. Life in this asylum was not pleasant in the least. The people in charge of the patients well-being were more like sociopaths preying on the weak than the care givers they need. Grace hasn’t spoken a word since entering the asylum and when touched or provoked, mostly by men, she would erupt into violent rages. One such eruption had her sent to the basement where the ‘more difficult’ patients are discarded. While in this unlivable to human kind cell, Grace bonded with her neighboring inmate, Falsteed, he was able to break through Grace’s shell and she began talking again.

    The story became more interesting when Dr. Thornhollow, a visiting surgeon who comes to the hospital to perform Lobotomies, arrived. The build up for his arrival gave me the creeps, and he was obviously not completely right, but sane enough to be very likable. When Grace saw how calm the patients he did the procedure on were, she asked him to do the same for her. Falsteed disagreed, claiming that Grace is too smart to be made that way, as it turns out, Grace had a Photographic Memory.

    Thornhollow decided that Grace would be of great help in his work and they all came up with a scheme for Grace’s escape. He took her from the Boston asylum to an Ohio asylum, where patients were treated with more care and respect. This was where the story took a lighter turn, morbid at times, but lighter because Grace right away met two of the most entertaining characters. Nell and Lizzy, Nell was the funniest and certainly not prudish, in fact most of her jokes were of a sexual nature. Lizzy had an invisible friend called String, everyone accepted String as just a part of everyday life, but Nell liked to poke fun at Lizzy about String, in a friendly way of course, and I enjoyed getting these moments of laughter from a story that started out so dark.

    The mystery and crime sleuthing comes into play when Thornhollow and Grace got to work helping the police solve crimes. The techniques Thornhollow and Grace used were discussed as a new way to solve crimes. This reminded me of the crime procedural shows I use to watch and sometimes still do. I always figured out where they were going with each clue.

    Of course things can’t be all hunky-dory forever, Grace was still a damaged soul and continue to erupt in rages when things are out of her control. When working on these cases with the doc didn’t help anymore and just added to her feeling out of control, Grace reacted in a way I did not see coming. I thought I knew where the story was going, but I kept getting surprised. The choices Grace made to deal with the things that plagued her were not what I foresaw. Didn’t expect her to go the by any means necessary route to work through her situation. While some of these things made Grace come across as actually crazy, it did lead her to do what she needed to start her healing process.

    I liked Grace as a protagonist, I was able to see who she is through all the pain she wears on her sleeve. She was determined, not a shrinking violet that’s for sure, and she has a kind of 1800’s girls street smarts about her. Even though it’s clear Thornhollow was a bit off, or maybe a lot, I found him very wise. I was intrigued by a lot of the things he said. The storytelling was comparable with the time period, I think the author did a good job with that. It had characters that were captivating, who made me really adore them or truly despise them.

    Putting aside the depressing undertone of this story, I was actually entertained, be it on the darker side of entertaining, I learned a lot, I would call this story Edutainment. The way mental illness was looked at back then was not they way it is today. I mean there were patients in the asylum with Grace that were in there on the say so of their husband or father. Most weren’t actually insane and treatment was practically nonexistent. And the crime solving parts were edutainment as well, if it’s true that these procedures were first used in the 1800’s, don’t know, but it was fascinating all the same. I’ve read a few crime procedural books, not just watch them, and I actually like reading them too, so I think that was the most interesting part for me. Seeing the characters do these things with new eyes that’s so familiar today, especially all over our television screen. Oh, another thing, there is no romance in this book, so don’t expect that. I think these people had too much baggage to find time for any romantic escapades, but believe it or not there were a lot of laughs to be had.
  • (5/5)
    This is a tremendously good read. Grace goes through a heart-breaking journey, and eventually, comes into her own with the help of the young doctor Thornhollow. Fascinating characters, haunting atmosphere, a breath of fresh air for the Mystery/ Thriller genre. I hope there are more books about the adventures of Grace and Thornhollow.
  • (2/5)
    This was okay. I was mostly just bored the entire time. Nothing enticed me to keep reading. The plot was really slow and I didn't care enough about the characters. They just fell flat for me. This whole book did.
    2/5 stars.
  • (4/5)
    This book did not go where I thought it might. It was a quick and light read despite some heavy and dark plot points. And it was interesting reading about 19th century asylums (and the horrible helplessness of being a woman in that era). *trigger warning for abuse, rape, and suicide.
  • (4/5)
    ***THIS REVIEW MAY OR MAY NOT CONTAIN SPOILERS***I'll get straight to it: I am disappointed to see quite a bunch of rather negative reviews. I understand, I too had certain expectations after reading the blurb. And up to some point, that's what we got. Oh, the horror! Then there's the sudden change. How or when, you'll notice right away. Whether you like it or not (you might consider the following as a spoiler, though I merely see it as a warning...), don't stare yourself blind on the "high Sherlock content". If you do, you won't be able see the psychological aspect and the dark path Grace Mae continues to walk upon. But then, that's my humble opinion and I don't expect you to agree with me, just remember: it IS A Madness So Discreet!
  • (3/5)
    The story is disturbing early on because you've heard of things that went on in asylums in the 19th century, of how cruel and inhumane these places were, and the reader is not spared any of this. One such place in Boston for the mentally ill is where fifteen-year-old Grace Mae is sent after an unwanted pregnancy, a result of forced relations upon her from a family member. But Grace has a sharp mind, which comes to the attention of a Dr. Thornhollow, who devises a ruse and an escape to Ohio for Grace after the (implied) stillborn delivery of the infant. It's a major plot twist, and the whole storyline turns on it. Still an inmate in the Ohio hospital, Grace remains under the doctor's care and becomes his assistant in his study of the criminal mind. Together, they investigate the possibility of a serial killer. Throughout, the supporting characters are well fleshed out, interesting, and at times humorous. A few inmates/characters have paranormal traits, which gives comic relief to the hard realities of life in such a place. As Grace's story advances, there are even more plot twists with an ending that's unpredictable and quite surprising.
  • (4/5)
    Victim of sexual abuse by her powerful father, pregnant Grace has been committed to an insane asylum until the birth of her baby. At the hands of the sadistic staff she miscarries and is punished for her violent reaction by being placed in the dungeon. She unexpectedly finds kindness there, and is rescued by a doctor who studies the criminal mind and wants her help to solve murders. They travel to a benign asylum in Ohio where Grace finds friendship as well as darkness in her work with the doctor. The portrayal of mental health services and attitudes during the 19th century adds to the dark plot, and the suspense makes this a fast-paced page-turner.
  • (3/5)
    Actual Rating: 2.5 stars

    First 20%: 4 stars
    Middle 60%: 3 stars
    Last 20%: 1 star

    I have very mixed thoughts about this book. When I first received the ARC I was ecstatic as the blurb had promised a dark thriller shrouded in madness. And the first 90 pages or so delivered. But then the novel does a huge shift into a mildly suspenseful detective novel that faintly resembles Sherlock Holmes. If it weren't for previous reviews I had read, this would have completely thrown me and caused me to dislike the book. However, when separating this section from the first part of the book, I was able to enjoy it as a light read.

    But then, in what I can only assume is an attempt to bring back the darkness and also cause the story to come full circle, Grace relishes in the "madness" within her by killing someone in cold blood- yes, he was most likely guilty of the crime she believed he committed, but her lack of remorse and coldness took it a step further and her father's secret his serial raping comes to light in a twisted (read: roundabout or perverse; take your pick) way.

    At this point my interest started to wain and I grew annoyed with the many things I felt the novel was trying to do but could not fully accomplish. The ultimate blow to the book is the excuse Dr. Thornhollow uses to justify Grace's father's actions. Now, I don't know what the definition of criminally insane was back in the 1890s, but I assume it doesn't vary too greatly to the definition of today. And a criminally insane person would not have the capacity to justify his actions (i.e. say he did it "because he wanted to" and is childish) nor have the state of mind to keep his multiple crimes hidden. He simply would not care who saw him performing such acts.

    Sadly, this book did not live up to the expectations I had. It felt disjointed, like multiple books sewn together, and though I would have loved to see the beginning (at the Boston asylum) further explored, or the middle it's own book, altogether, A Madness So Discreet just didn't work for me.
  • (4/5)
    Normally when I write a review I give a bit of a synopsis at the beginning but in this case I think it is almost better if you hardly know anything but the basic premise before reading. The book is about a pregnant woman in the late 1800s who is placed in an insane asylum by her wealthy and prominent father in order to hide her pregnancy. In my opinion that's really all you need to know because this book goes in some surprising directions which in part is why this was a fun read. (And yes, even though this book was dark and disturbing, it still managed to have some humor and was entertaining).This is the second book I have read by the author and she really has a knack for writing creative stories with strong female characters. I have read other books with an insane asylum as the setting, even some that take place in the same time period of the late 1800s, and yet this book felt completely fresh and new. And while there might have been some parts of the plot I struggled with, mainly the big story line of the last quarter of the book, it was still a story that I couldn't put down. I actually would love to read another book featuring Grace as a character. While the book might not be everyone's cup of tea, this was an enjoyable reading experience for me.
  • (4/5)
    This book was very interesting! I love the unique characters and would really love to see a sequel.
  • (1/5)
    I received this free eARC from Edelweiss in exchange for my honest review. Soooo... I DNF this at 25%. I was really looking forward to this novel! I loved McGinnis's other novels and the synopsis of this one was very intriguing. But man, it is so dry and the writing is long winded...I probably should have kept going and continued to read some more of the story, especially because the setting was changing and I believe the story was about to pick up now that Grace found a way out, but I'm just not that intrerested in what happens with Grace, as sad as that is. What happened to Grace before being submitted to the asylum was terrible and I feel for her. I do. But because of the writing, I just feel like nothing was getting done and she was just wandering aimlessly. Sadly this book just didn't cut it for me. I think this book is going to be a novel for a specific audience and many will try to read it because of the author's previous novels, but this is not the same. Actually, it's almost completely different. I'm glad I was given the opportunity to read this early, though, even though it wasn't the novel for me.
  • (5/5)
    I must admit I had high hopes for this book and it lived up to them. Were parts of the story a bit contrived? Absolutely. Were some a bit slow? Yes. But I still enjoyed it and I'm happy I read it. I really felt for Grace and everything was going through. Same with Nell and Elizabeth and the murdered women. It was well written. 5 out of 5 stars.
  • (3/5)
    A woman is put in to an asylum because she is inconveniently pregnant. Instead of languishing there, she is taken under the wing of a doctor who sees her powers of observation. And there's a killer on the loose. Interesting but not mind-blowing.
  • (2/5)
    Grace Mae has to pretend to be insane to keep her sanity.I wanted to like this book. And I did up until about chapter 10. With such a strong beginning I was hoping to get some more gritty details, continue with the gore and insane behavior from both the patients and those who are supposed to be taking care of them. But once Grace escaped with Dr. Thornhollow it became The Adventures of a cold Sherlock Holmes and (Fake) Asylum Patient (Female) Watson. We all know Sherlock is a perceptive individual and very clever. A bit impulsive at times but he only does it because of the thrill of solving a crime. Watson is the faithful partner looking at things Sherlock misses and serves as a way for Sherlock to collect his thoughts and organize what he knows. Thornhollow and Grace swapped back and forth between their roles as Sherlock and Watson but there was no thrill. No chemistry or connection other than your-brain-is-useful. I couldn’t care less for the lack of romance but I’d like them to do more than just tolerate each other. I wanted at least a friendship between the two and not rely on only Grace’s friendship with Nell (a sex addict infected with syphillis), Janie (a nurse at the asylum), or Elizabeth (a clinically insane patient with a special string that tells her things). I liked Thornhollow and Grace individually but not as a partnership.When the crazy was discussed it’s when the story got interesting Falsteed a former practicing doctor who ate tumors, Senator May serial rapist and incesty pedophile who went after Grace his oldest daughter before almost pouncing on his youngest framed for murder when he didn't commit one, Nell going on a sex spree after her first ever lover gave her syphillis and she went after the guy’s family down to the last cousin for revenge.When it got crazy it got good but this book focussed too much on Grace’s non existent insanity. She was thrown in an asylum for being pregnant she reacted to her surroundings in a normal way yet she didn’t suffer PTSD. I really don’t think she was ever insane even when she killed the serial killer of the story, a very anti-climatic ending to that arcNot a bad story but it gets boring very quickly. I hate to say it but this was as psychologically thrilling as a YA could get and it's not a good thing. It tried really hard to be a cross between Sherlock Holmes and Criminal Minds that didn't work for me.
  • (2/5)
    ‘They all had their terrors, but at least the spiders that lived in the new girl’s veins were imaginary. Grace has learned long ago that the true horrors of this world were other people.’A Madness So Discreet introduces Grace Mae, a young woman who has been placed in an asylum in an attempt to hide her out of wedlock pregnancy in addition to the horrible secret to how she came to be pregnant in the first place. She is certainly of sound mind, however, the long nights spent listening to the screams of patients echoing the corridors is enough to effect even the toughest of individuals. When an opportunity to leave the asylum is presented to her she jumps at the opportunity for a fresh start, but Grace soon finds that sometimes your past finds a way to sneak up on you.The beginning is one of the most shocking and audacious introductions I have come across in YA. We’re introduced to Grace and the patients in the Wayburne Lunatic Asylum of Boston and a terrifying picture is quickly painted. This is set in the 19th century and patients are not treated as people, they are not given sufficient food or clothing, and they are thrown into the basement cells which leak rainwater from outside as a form of punishment. There are other far worse punishments described as well. It was grisly and utterly distressing but considering grisly and distressing are totally my thing, I was immediately foreseeing a first-rate reading experience. Alas, the book took an odd turn after that.‘They work their discreet types of madness on us, power and pain, and we hold on to our truths in the darkness.’Going from a decidedly Gothic feel and leaving the confines of the asylum, it quickly transforms into a something of a crime thriller, just minus the thrill. Grace is placed in the care of Dr. Thornhollow after he takes a keen interest in her sharp mind and believes she can be of assistance to him. Why he goes to such dramatic lengths to get her out of the asylum is beyond me though. See, Dr. Thornhollow believes himself to be Sherlock in his spare time, investigating crimes and catching killers. Towards the end we once again take an odd turn and it quickly becomes an episode of Law & Order.Referencing a book as having a Gothic feel, set in an asylum with crime and legal aspects should have been a home-run for me and I can’t decide whether all aspects combined were simply too much or it was simply too far-fetched for it to feel any way authentic. I would have much preferred Grace’s story to play out within the asylum walls, wrestling her inner-demons.
  • (5/5)
    Review courtesy of Dark Faerie TalesQuick & Dirty: A compelling read that begs you to question your own sanity.Opening Sentence: They all had their terrors.The Review:What a fantastic read! A Madness So Discreet is the sort of story that will make you question sanity itself. What defines sane and insane? Where is the line drawn? Who decides?The MC, Grace, is a young lady admitted to an asylum after being impregnated out of wedlock. In Grace’s time and society it is appalling to have such a thing happen so her family sends the young lady to an insane asylum to have her baby in secret, ship the baby off and for Grace to return home from her ‘European tour’ as if nothing has changed. The problem is, everything for Grace has changed because her father raped her and it’s his child she carries!They all had their terrors, but at least the spiders that lived in the new girl’s veins were imaginary. Grace had learned long ago that the true horrors of this world were other people.At the asylum Grace loses her baby but fakes her death and is smuggled out as an apprentice to Dr. Thornhollow, a doctor that studies criminal minds.“This one’s as cold as the water she’s sitting in, down past her bones and into her soul. Nothing wrong with her brain. It’s her heart that’s got no life in it.”I can’t begin to describe why I loved this book so much but I’ll give it a try. Firstly, Grace is the perfect MC; she’s gone through a terrible ordeal and comes out stronger than ever, is extremely intelligent and uses her wit to her advantage in a time when women were underestimated. In some respects, Grace seems crazy. She has the ability to literally switch of her emotions at will, even when she’s faced by a cut-up corpse! But this book has taught me that the terms sanity and insanity are often our perceptions and the society we live in. We are so quick to judge but usually it’s far from the truth.“What a shock you’ve had. Taken from that world into this. You used to move about in light and lavender, with the laughter pouring from you, and now it’s all blood and darkness, with your throat closed so tight your own breath is choking you.”Thornhollow is a brilliant character. I’ve never come across the likes of him before. He is kind of a genius in his field of work but has very little understanding of human relations and emotions. Thornhollow’s inability to act normal was hilarious, and added lightness to this otherwise intense read. His interaction /relationship with Grace was particularly entertaining because even though there was no romance, their chemistry as doctor and protégé/patient was brilliant.“Who is this Dr. Thornhollow you spoke of?” she asked. “Him? He’s the sanest of us all.”“Why is that?”“Because he knows he’s insane.”There were many other odd characters scattered in this story and usually I fail to remember them. However, the author managed to develop them all in such a way that I couldn’t forget even the house crazy stable boy, or the doctor’s feminist sister. Each character was unique and memorable, making the story a pleasure to read without any confusion.“I know that this is highly irregular,” Thornhollow went on, his voice pitched low.“Ighly irregular is me daily life, Doctor. Bein’ asked if I want to go for a stroll down to the ‘orehouse with a mute lassie alongside me by a man ‘oo’s supposed to be the next Jaysus Christ is flat cockamamie.”This is my second 5-star read this year and I cannot wait to read more by Mindy McGinnis.Notable Scene:“So are we really that different? The healthy and the ill?” Grace asked.“I would argue that there is no difference at all,” Thornhollow said. “To me the insane are simply people who have chosen not to participate in the world in the same manner as the majority, and there are days I don’t wonder if they’ve got the right of it.”“You make it sound as if hardly anyone is insane with a definition as narrow as that.”“Quite the opposite, my definition is too broad. I think we’re all quite made. Some of us are just more discreet about it.”FTC Advisory: Katherine Tegen Books/HarperCollins provided me with a copy of A Madness So Discreet. No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review.
  • (4/5)
    A Madness So Discreet by Mindy McGinnis was not completely what I expected. I expected a dark story, which I got, but I also got a sleuths story. Within this dark and violent story I got a procedural crime story of sorts. Think a mixture of Criminal Minds, Law & Order, the SVU one, a little CSI and any show with a crazy person solving crimes, but set in the late 1800’s without all the modern day equipment. Just keen observations and the use of new crime solving techniques, according to the secondary character, Dr. Thornhollow, was first used during the Jack The Ripper murders. Crime solving procedures we today call, Profiling, Motive, and Crime Scene Investigation.

    Grace is our protagonist and I quickly learned that she has suffered some horrific things before being placed in an asylum to hide a pregnancy, which she didn’t come by willing. Life in this asylum was not pleasant in the least. The people in charge of the patients well-being were more like sociopaths preying on the weak than the care givers they need. Grace hasn’t spoken a word since entering the asylum and when touched or provoked, mostly by men, she would erupt into violent rages. One such eruption had her sent to the basement where the ‘more difficult’ patients are discarded. While in this unlivable to human kind cell, Grace bonded with her neighboring inmate, Falsteed, he was able to break through Grace’s shell and she began talking again.

    The story became more interesting when Dr. Thornhollow, a visiting surgeon who comes to the hospital to perform Lobotomies, arrived. The build up for his arrival gave me the creeps, and he was obviously not completely right, but sane enough to be very likable. When Grace saw how calm the patients he did the procedure on were, she asked him to do the same for her. Falsteed disagreed, claiming that Grace is too smart to be made that way, as it turns out, Grace had a Photographic Memory.

    Thornhollow decided that Grace would be of great help in his work and they all came up with a scheme for Grace’s escape. He took her from the Boston asylum to an Ohio asylum, where patients were treated with more care and respect. This was where the story took a lighter turn, morbid at times, but lighter because Grace right away met two of the most entertaining characters. Nell and Lizzy, Nell was the funniest and certainly not prudish, in fact most of her jokes were of a sexual nature. Lizzy had an invisible friend called String, everyone accepted String as just a part of everyday life, but Nell liked to poke fun at Lizzy about String, in a friendly way of course, and I enjoyed getting these moments of laughter from a story that started out so dark.

    The mystery and crime sleuthing comes into play when Thornhollow and Grace got to work helping the police solve crimes. The techniques Thornhollow and Grace used were discussed as a new way to solve crimes. This reminded me of the crime procedural shows I use to watch and sometimes still do. I always figured out where they were going with each clue.

    Of course things can’t be all hunky-dory forever, Grace was still a damaged soul and continue to erupt in rages when things are out of her control. When working on these cases with the doc didn’t help anymore and just added to her feeling out of control, Grace reacted in a way I did not see coming. I thought I knew where the story was going, but I kept getting surprised. The choices Grace made to deal with the things that plagued her were not what I foresaw. Didn’t expect her to go the by any means necessary route to work through her situation. While some of these things made Grace come across as actually crazy, it did lead her to do what she needed to start her healing process.

    I liked Grace as a protagonist, I was able to see who she is through all the pain she wears on her sleeve. She was determined, not a shrinking violet that’s for sure, and she has a kind of 1800’s girls street smarts about her. Even though it’s clear Thornhollow was a bit off, or maybe a lot, I found him very wise. I was intrigued by a lot of the things he said. The storytelling was comparable with the time period, I think the author did a good job with that. It had characters that were captivating, who made me really adore them or truly despise them.

    Putting aside the depressing undertone of this story, I was actually entertained, be it on the darker side of entertaining, I learned a lot, I would call this story Edutainment. The way mental illness was looked at back then was not they way it is today. I mean there were patients in the asylum with Grace that were in there on the say so of their husband or father. Most weren’t actually insane and treatment was practically nonexistent. And the crime solving parts were edutainment as well, if it’s true that these procedures were first used in the 1800’s, don’t know, but it was fascinating all the same. I’ve read a few crime procedural books, not just watch them, and I actually like reading them too, so I think that was the most interesting part for me. Seeing the characters do these things with new eyes that’s so familiar today, especially all over our television screen. Oh, another thing, there is no romance in this book, so don’t expect that. I think these people had too much baggage to find time for any romantic escapades, but believe it or not there were a lot of laughs to be had.