Alet Berg has a long way to go to impress her higher ups, especially considering how she landed in her current predicament. Relegated to the small town of Unie, Alet realizes her chance when the burned body of an unidentified teenage girl is discovered on a local farm. And even though her superiors don't want her on the investigation, she plans to dig into the case anyway.
A century ago, with the Boer war raging around them, a young girl was forced into an experiment she had no understanding of. When the dust settled, the doctor leading the research fled and the girl in question lived just long enough to try and ensure the safety of her newborn baby.
That infant, one of just two who lived through the experiment, is part of a mystery that spans one hundred years, connecting Alet and her investigation to the terrible history of the land that surrounds her.
Whoa! I'm not even sure where to start with this one.
I was sold on Michelle Pretorius's debut with the comparison to Lauren Beukes. I have, in very recent years, become more and more fascinated by South Africa and the writers who come from there. Beukes, Sarah Lotz, and Natasha Mostert are just a few whose works have landed on my favorites list with each and every new release, so of course I was excited to take a chance on Pretorius.
It's not just the caliber of work that I've seen, but the subject matter as well. The Monster's Daughter promised a touch of the region's dark history wrapped around what sounded like a truly enthralling modern-day mystery - and of course the cross-genre aspect is one that always appeals to me as well.
So there were a lot of expectations on my part in diving into this debut. And, readers, I was not let down in the least! From the very first page I was drawn into both Alet's investigation and the historical narrative. The balance between the two worked well for me - I never felt like I was slogging through one of the narratives just waiting to get back to the really interesting one, both were equally fascinating and excellently paced.
As mentioned, this one is quite dark. All things considered, it kind of has to be - the history, way more than a touch, is a major part of the plot. In this Literary Hub article, Pretorius talks about what spurred the idea for The Monster's Daughter and how she'd hoped to use fiction to illustrate and help people understand the history of South Africa. I think she has succeeded brilliantly in this effort, creating a highly readable and entertaining book that fluidly incorporates a history many of us may not be entirely aware of.
And now for the giveaway: I have one copy up for grabs. To enter simply fill out the Rafflecopter below before Monday, August 8. Open US only and no PO boxes please.
a Rafflecopter giveaway
To see more stops on the tour be sure to check out the official TLC tour page here.
For more on Michelle Pretorius and her work you can visit her website here. You can also follow her on Twitter.
Purchase Links: Amazon | Books a Million | Barnes & Noble | Melville House