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In Alias Grace, bestselling author Margaret Atwood has written her most captivating, disturbing, and ultimately satisfying work since The Handmaid's Tale. She takes us back in time and into the life of one of the most enigmatic and notorious women of the nineteenth century.
Grace Marks has been convicted for her involvement in the vicious murders of her employer, Thomas Kinnear, and Nancy Montgomery, his housekeeper and mistress. Some believe Grace is innocent; others think her evil or insane. Now serving a life sentence, Grace claims to have no memory of the murders.
Dr. Simon Jordan, an up-and-coming expert in the burgeoning field of mental illness, is engaged by a group of reformers and spiritualists who seek a pardon for Grace. He listens to her story while bringing her closer and closer to the day she cannot remember. What will he find in attempting to unlock her memories? Is Grace a female fiend? A bloodthirsty femme fatale? Or is she the victim of circumstances?
From the Trade Paperback edition.
From Publishers Weekly
© Publishers Weekly
Atwood's Version of a Historical Crime Mystery
There are plenty of delicious details in this novel of moral ambiguities. The historical facts are accurate in the framework of the story. Canada wasn't a country at the time of the crime, just a collection of political ideas. As the story unfolds, we have a correlation of criminal and political evolution, although not always for the better. The stinger at the end is that we still don't know if Alias is guilty or innocent. If you want a clear cut ending, this isn't your book.