Selected for the March Indie Next and the LibraryReads, The Madwoman Upstairs * by Catherine Lowell is "a mystery, a love story, and a very dark comedy with the Brontës...playing a role back there in the shadows."
20 year-old American Samantha Whipple is the last of the Brontë line and the presumed heir to a long-rumored trove of diaries, paintings, letters, and early novel drafts never revealed to anyone outside of the family. When she fulfills her father's dying wish to attend Oxford (his alma mater) almost immediately, she is the center of speculation and unwanted attention, especially among Brontë scholars and fanatics.
Soon long lost objects thought to have perished in the fire that killed her father begin relentlessly rematerializing in her life, compelling her on an elaborate and frustrating scavenger hunt, guided only by her father's cryptic notes. When she is emotionally and physically challenged to her limits, and a careless mistake places her at risk academically, help comes unexpectedly from her handsome but inscrutable tutor who is "as complex and passionate as his student." Together, they must decode the clues hidden within the Brontës’ novels in order to put the rumor to rest.
"Smart and surprising and fiercely funny." “An entertaining and ultimately sweet story." For fans of Juliet by Anne Fortier.
Nelly Dean : a return to Wuthering Heights * * by Alison Case, that re-imagines life at Wuthering Heights through the eyes of the Earnshaws’ loyal servant, Nelly Dean. This is the first novel by a professor of 19th century fiction and poetry at Williams College.
Charlotte Brontë : a fiery heart by Claire Harman, is a "landmark biography (that) transforms Charlotte Brontë from a tragic figure into a modern heroine." The Brontës at Haworth by Ann Dinsdale paints a detailed picture of everyday life at Haworth, and provides fascinating insight into the lives of some of the most beloved authors of the 19th century.
* = starred review
* * = 2 starred reviews