Friday, October 3, 2014

The Cure for Dreaming by Cat Winters

She's a young woman coming of age.  Her father is an old fashioned dentist who is a bit of a sadist.  He also has strong beliefs about how a young woman ought to behave.  Since she dares to disagree with him and does things he doesn't approve of, he decides to take action to make her behave as he thinks she should...

Abrams Books sent me an ARC of this book to read for review (thank you).  It will be published October 14th so you can grab a copy then.

This is a gothic horror novel that starts out with a smart young woman that believes women should be allowed to vote.  In reality, women were jailed, beaten up, and ostracized from their families for supporting this belief.  In this case, Olivia is tortured in a different style.

It all starts when Olivia goes to a hypnotist performance at the theater with friends.  They urge her to volunteer to appear on stage and be hypnotized.  It goes very well.  And the hypnotist is a young man who is all too attractive, too.  Unfortunately, when her father finds out, he decides to use that against her.

He agrees to pay the hypnotist a goodly sum of money to make his daughter a "proper" lady.  No more school, no more dreams of college, no more dreams of travel; just a good dutiful wife to an appropriately matched husband.  Henri hypnotizes her again, tells her to see the real nature of men and women not her dreams, and he tells her when she's angry she'll say:  All is well.

While the true nature of people scares her to death and she can't say what she'd like with anger, she can still write.  She writes a letter to the newspaper and sets all the men in town off.  Then Henri is invited again and he makes her heave if she hears certain words, all pertaining to the woman's movement. 

I can't imagine living like that.  Olivia has my sympathy and I won't mention what I'd like to do to her father.  Henri is only doing what he is for the money he'll earn.  His sister has cancer and needs surgery and it's the only way to make the funds to help her.

I admire Olivia's intelligence and found the story compelling.  There were stories within stories and it all makes sense in the era the story was written.  If you read this, it won't be one you forget quickly.  

Do you see how people really are???


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