The Eighth Circle of Hell – My Review!!
I really stepped outside my normal reading boundaries with The Eighth Circle of Hell (Atticus and Lucie Fox) by Gary Dolman. It was dark, disturbing, and not for the faint of heart. Read on for my thoughts.
Synopsis (from the author):
In the 19th century, when the British Empire was approaching its zenith, the Victorians began to believe that, with their power and their fabulous wealth, they could do anything. Certain gentlemen became convinced that they could indeed do anything…and get away with it.
A noted Harrogate philanthropist is found murdered, the victim of a brutal and frenzied attack. His apparent killer, a frail and elderly workhouse ‘imbecile’, had fled his house as a child.
The Eighth Circle of Hell follows strands of lust, love and revenge as they twist together and stretch across that most notorious of times: the Victorian Defloration Mania.
What I liked about The Eighth Circle of Hell:
Despite the obvious horrible and disgusting subject of the book, the story was very well-written and didn’t sensationalize the material. Gary Dolman treated the villains as monsters and they deserved the loathing I felt for them. The victims drew my sympathy. Atticus and Lucy, our erstwhile detectives, were a civilized counterpoint to those they pursued. While I can’t truthfully say I enjoyed to story (the topic was much too disturbing for that), it does offer insight into the times and psychology of those who feel they are above the law.
What I didn’t like about The Eighth Circle of Hell:
I would have liked to have seen Atticus and Lucie more disturbed by their investigation than they seemed. Perhaps it was the stiff upper lip of the British, but they didn’t come across as appalled by the actions of the “gentlemen.” Outrage would have added some authenticity to the story.
Overall impression of The Eighth Circle of Hell:
The Eighth Circle of Hell (Atticus and Lucie Fox) is a story of brutal lust, predatory men, and revenge. It handled a horrible subject as delicately as possible, and had a few twists that kept me guessing the outcome. Well-written, the book was filled with characters I won’t soon forget. I would recommend it to anyone who wants a fictional insight into the darker side of Victorian society. Beware, though, as I mentioned before, it is deeply disturbing and not for those under 18.
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