Monday, November 9, 2015

Sweet Madness

Title: Sweet Madness
Author: Trisha Leaver
Series: Standalone
Number of Pages: 224
Date Read: 10/25/15
Genre: Historical Fiction, Retelling, Mystery

Synopsis (Found on

Seventeen-year-old Bridget Sullivan is alone in Fall River, a city that sees Irish immigrants as nothing more than a drunken drain on society. To make matters worse, she's taken employment with the city’s most peculiar and gossip-laden family—the Bordens. But Bridget can’t afford to be picky—the pay surpasses any other job Bridget could ever secure and she desperately needs the money to buy her little sister, Cara, passage to the states. It doesn’t hurt that the job location is also close to her beau, Liam. As she enters the disturbing inner workings of the Borden household, Bridget clings to these advantages.

However, what seemed like a straightforward situation soon turns into one that is untenable. Of course Bridget has heard the gossip around town about the Bordens, but what she encounters is far more unsettling. The erratic, paranoid behavior of Mr. Borden, the fearful silence of his wife, and worse still…the nightly whisperings Bridget hears that seem to come from the walls themselves.

The unexpected bright spot of the position is that Lizzie Borden is so friendly. At first, Bridget is surprised at how Lizzie seems to look out for her, how she takes a strong interest in Bridget’s life. Over time, a friendship grows between them. But when Mr. Borden’s behavior goes from paranoid to cruel, and the eerie occurrences in the house seem to be building momentum, Bridget makes the tough decision that she must leave the house—even if it means leaving behind Lizzie, her closest friend, alone with the madness. Something she swore she would not do.

But when Bridget makes a horrifying discovery in the home, all that she thought she knew about the Bordens is called into question…including if Lizzie is dangerous. And the choice she must make about Lizzie’s character could mean Bridget’s life or death.

SWEET MADNESS is a retelling of the infamous Borden murders from the point of view of Lizzie’s Irish maid, Bridget Sullivan.

My Review:

This book was good. It is a retelling or re-imagining of the Lizzie Borden Murders. 

The book is told through the point of view of the Borden maid, 17 year old Bridget Sullivan who immigrated from Ireland. Right off the bat you can tell something is wrong in the house. Lizzie had mood swings and ups and downs. Mr. Borden is very cheap, weird and angry. Mrs. Borden (Lizzie's step mother) is always sick, fragile and always in her room. Bridget hears things and whispers at night that scare her. There's talk of a family curse that I still don't even get or know what it is beside them all being crazy. The Borden household is the gossip and talk of the town, especially Lizzie. The house is dilapidated and in serious need of repair but Mr. Borden is too cheap to do it although he is very wealthy from his businesses. 

Bridget is a nice girl and I liked her. However she feels like she's slowly going insane in the house with all the secrets but refuses to leave to find other work because she doesn't want to leave Lizzie alone with her father. Lizzie is in her thirties but she gets attached to Bridget and Bridget becomes her best friend. Bridget feels the same about Lizzie. Bridget's boyfriend Liam, doesn't like her working in the house and constantly warns her about Lizzie and to just do her job and no more. 

Some weird incidents happen in the book that are strange and kind of creepy. The whole novel is creepy. At times the book became boring because it was about the everyday life in the house and how Bridget felt. The ending was the most action and that was the murders. Since, historically, no one really knows what happened with the murders or who really did them, the author took the liberty of creating her own scenario about what happened and who the murder was. It was very interesting. 

Like I said, this book was ok and it was a creepy read just in time for Halloween.

Rating: B

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