An astonishing debut, a novel of epic scope and suspense that conjures up all the magic and menace of Victorian London
London, 1892: James Norbury, a shy would-be poet newly down from Oxford, finds lodging with a charming young aristocrat. Through this new friendship, he is introduced to the drawing-rooms of high society, and finds love in an unexpected quarter. Then, suddenly, he vanishes without a trace. Unnerved, his sister, Charlotte, sets out from their crumbling country estate determined to find him. In the sinister, labyrinthine city that greets her, she uncovers a secret world at the margins populated by unforgettable characters: a female rope walker turned vigilante, a street urchin with a deadly secret, and the chilling “Doctor Knife.” But the answer to her brother’s disappearance ultimately lies within the doors of one of the country’s preeminent and mysterious institutions: The Aegolius Club, whose members include the most ambitious, and most dangerous, men in England.
In her first novel, Lauren Owen has created a fantastical world that is both beguiling and terrifying. The Quick will establish her as one of fiction’s most dazzling talents.
The Quick is a massive tome. So for a book to be this thick and long, the story better be excellent otherwise it can be a chore to read. It kind of was a chore for me. While, I liked the Victorian era feel that this story had, I felt that it did drag. Well in the beginning it did. The first two parts of the book were alright. I really just skimmed through these parts. That is a lot of pages to skim of about 172 pages out of a total of 523 pages. Part three is when the story really took off and got interesting. From there it was easy reading. I like that the story and the evil of the night was not flashy but more traditional as I would expect early creatures like this to be like in this era. This is a good book if you can stick with it.