Allegheny County Public libraries are closed to the public, but the digital library is open! Check out the eLibrary site for more information. If you need a library card, sign up here. Check your local library's website for more information about closures.

The Essex Serpent

by Perry, Sarah, 1979-

Format: Kindle Book 2017 2017
  Adobe EPUB ebook
  OverDrive Read
Availability: Unavailable 0 of 2 copies
2 people on waitlist
Unavailable from OverDrive (2)
Summary
Set in Victorian London and an Essex village in the 1890's, and enlivened by the debates on scientific and medical discovery which defined the era, The Essex Serpent has at its heart the story of two extraordinary people who fall for each other, but not in the usual way. They are Cora Seaborne and Will Ransome. Cora is a well-to-do London widow who moves to the Essex parish of Aldwinter, and Will is the local vicar. They meet as their village is engulfed by rumours that the mythical Essex Serpent, once said to roam the marshes claiming human lives, has returned. Cora, a keen amateur naturalist is enthralled, convinced the beast may be a real undiscovered species. But Will sees his parishioners' agitation as a moral panic, a deviation from true faith. Although they can agree on absolutely nothing, as the seasons turn around them in this quiet corner of England, they find themselves inexorably drawn together and torn apart. Told with exquisite grace and intelligence, this novel is most of all a celebration of love, and the many different guises it can take.
Published Reviews
Booklist Review: "*Starred Review* Secret love and the suggestion of something unearthly moving in the Essex Blackwater drive the intricate plot of this atmospheric historical novel about Cora Seaborne, a widow visiting Colchester with her companion, ostensibly to explore the estuary for fossils. A medieval winged serpent myth still holds the inhabitants of Aldwinter in thrall, despite the best efforts of the local rector, Will Ransome; and as Perry's second novel (following After Me Comes the Flood, 2015) wends its way through mysterious disappearances, fog-laden visions, suspicion, and tragedy, it seems as if the monster is real. The vivid, often frightening imagery (the Leviathan, a shack sinking in the bog, the scrape of scales moving up the shingle) and the lush descriptions (stained glass angels had the wings of jays) create a magical background for the sensual love story between Sarah and Will. Book-discussion groups will have a field day with the imagery, the well-developed characters, and the concepts of innocence, evil, and guilt. Like Lauren Groff's The Monsters of Templeton (2008), the appearance of a sea monster sheds more light on humanity than on natural history, while the sudden revelation of a creature of the deep heralds change and revelation, as in Jim Lynch's The Highest Tide (2005).--Baker, Jen Copyright 2017 Booklist"
From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Publisher's Weekly Review: "In Perry's (After Me Comes the Flood) excellent second novel, set in the Victorian era, recent widow Cora Seaborne leaves London with her 11-year-old son, Francis, and loyal companion, Martha, and goes to Colchester, where a legendary, fearsome creature called the Essex Serpent has been sighted. Scholarly Cora, who is more interested in the study of nature than in womanly matters of dress, tramps about in a man's tweed coat, determined to find proof of this creature's existence. Through friends, she is introduced to William Ransome, the local reverend; his devoted wife, Stella; and their three children. Cora looks for a scientific rationale for the Essex Serpent, while Ransome dismisses it as superstition. This puts them at odds with one another, but, strangely, also acts as a powerful source of attraction between them. When Cora is visited by her late husband's physician, Luke Garrett, who carries a not-so-secret torch for her, a love triangle of sorts is formed. In the end, a fatal illness, a knife-wielding maniac, and a fated union with the Essex Serpent will dictate the ultimate happiness of these characters. Like John Fowles's The French Lieutenant's Woman, whose Lyme Regis setting gets a shout-out here, this is another period literary pastiche with a contemporary overlay. Cora makes for a fiercely independent heroine around whom all the other characters orbit. (June) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved."
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Additional Information
Subjects Romance fiction
Man-woman relationships Fiction
Serpents Mythical creatures Fiction
Curiosities and wonders Fiction
Literature
Historical Fiction
Romance
Fiction
Great Britain History Victoria, 1837-1901 Fiction.
Electronic books.
Victoria, 1837-1901
Publisher [Place of publication not identified] :HarperCollins2017
2017
Contributors OverDrive, Inc.
Language English
System Details Mode of access: World Wide Web.
Format: Adobe EPUB eBook
Format: Kindle Book
Format: OverDrive Read
Requires Adobe Digital Editions or Amazon Kindle
Description 1 online resource
ISBN 9780062666390
9780062666390
Other Classic View