In 1817 Edinburgh, a young woman, Hazel Sinnett, is destined by birth to marry her cousin and be the lady of his estate despite her dreams of becoming a surgeon. Jack Currer exhumes recently buried graves and sells the remains to surgeons looking for practice. The two come together to help each other and the city, not knowing they are at the center of something sinister happening around them.
Schwartz’s writing style made me so excited to read this story. I really felt the atmosphere she was trying to create of 19th century Edinburgh. The medical descriptions were along with the care taken to deliver Hazel’s passion for surgery were exquisite. I think I could have read a whole novel just about Hazel’s professional career.
I really ended up enjoying the mystery that Schwartz sets up within the Anatomist’s Society as well. I knew something was up, but I couldn’t really pin what. These were the most enjoyable parts of this novel.
Upon finishing, I wasn’t really sure why this is considered a love story. The medical aspects and the mystery seemed to me the focus, and the romance felt like it was just thrown in there at the end. I honestly did not even really feel a connection between the two except for a strong friendship. I wonder if this is due to it being a Young Adult novel, in which case this part maybe is not meant for me to enjoy so much and is fine.
Overall, though, I loved the writing and the vibe I got from this book as well as the characterizations of everyone. I’ll be looking out for other stories from Dana Schwartz.
Have you read this novel? What did you think about it?