Reviews

  • <b>An impressive debut, dazzlingly original </b>

    The Times
  • <b>Bold and powerful</b>

    The Sunday Times
  • <b><i>With echoes of Jean Rhys's</i><i> Wide Sargasso Sea </i><i>and Sara Waters's</i><i> The Paying Guests</i></b>, this is an accomplished debut novel that perfectly captures the atmosphere of Georgian London and<b> gives voice to a singular and unforgettable heroine</b>

    Red Magazine
  • <b>Original and evocative </b>. . . vivid characters, lush settings,<b> a captivating heroine</b> and an intelligent, unsentimental analysis of her tragic history

    Irish Times
  • Collins has created in her title character a complex, melancholy, and trenchantly observant protagonist; too conflicted in motivation, perhaps, to be considered a heroine but <b>as dynamic and compelling as any character conceived by a Brontë sister</b>. Collins invokes both Voltaire and Defoe here, and she forges an unlikely but sadly harmonic connection with both these enlightenment heroes in her <b>gripping, groundbreaking debut</b>.

    Kirkus
  • Sweeping and addictive...Collins has created an epic tale that'll make for <b>total book club joy. Prepare to pass it on to friend after friend</b>

    Stylist
  • <b>A stunning debu</b>t...the old gothic soaks <i>The Confessions of Frannie Langton</i> so richly that fumes come off it . . . <b>That's why I love this book</b>. Collins hasn't just written an authentic gothic novel: she rugby tackles the notion of the saintly girl who emerges from suffering rather improved by it... Between her historical research, Frannie's voice and a plot that never slows to a walk, <b>the novel pulls the gothic into new territory and links it back to its origins</b>. It points at the reader and asks whether it might be a sign of atrocious privilege to enjoy a genre devoted to the grotesque - especially when the grotesquerie comes from things that might plausibly have happened in the name of science and sugar money

    Guardian