Review: The Madman's Daughter

The Madman's Daugther
by Megan Shepard
Series: The Madman's Daughter #1
Pages: 432
Release Date: January 29, 2013
by Balzer + Bray

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In the darkest places, even love is deadly.

Sixteen-year-old Juliet Moreau has built a life for herself in London—working as a maid, attending church on Sundays, and trying not to think about the scandal that ruined her life. After all, no one ever proved the rumors about her father's gruesome experiments. But when she learns he is alive and continuing his work on a remote tropical island, she is determined to find out if the accusations are true.

Accompanied by her father's handsome young assistant, Montgomery, and an enigmatic castaway, Edward—both of whom she is deeply drawn to—Juliet travels to the island, only to discover the depths of her father's madness: He has experimented on animals so that they resemble, speak, and behave as humans. And worse, one of the creatures has turned violent and is killing the island's inhabitants. Torn between horror and scientific curiosity, Juliet knows she must end her father's dangerous experiments and escape her jungle prison before it's too late. Yet as the island falls into chaos, she discovers the extent of her father's genius—and madness—in her own blood.

Inspired by H. G. Wells's classic The Island of Dr. Moreau, The Madman's Daughter is a dark and breathless Gothic thriller about the secrets we'll do anything to know and the truths we'll go to any lengths to protect.

*A copy was provided by Harper for review purposes*

Oh Shepard, this book could have been so good! I was loving it, and then you blew it! GAAHHHHH!
Unfortunately, this book was horrible. It was wrong on so many levels, suffered from a severe bout of insta-love, and had one of the worst main characters I’ve ever seen. The writing and story line was REALLY good, and I loved the idea of vivisection and making humans out of animals. The book was fast-paced , creepy, dark, and thrilling throughout, and the story line and staging was awesome. I loved how Shepard dropped hints throughout the book about certain things (if you've read this you'll know what I mean) so that the reader was able to figure out stuff before they happened.  I don't think I've loved a book so much, but at the same time hated it so much!  Really, I would have given this book 5 stars based on the story and writing alone...and then page 30 rolled around (or somewhere around there) and it went downhill – fast. Just as fast as the romance happened, and that was pretty quick. Literally 10 pages after Juliet was introduced to Montgomery, one of the love interests, she was obsessed with him and wanted to kiss him and have him touch her and blah blah blah. Insta-love. For the record, I hate insta-love. In my opinion, love is supposed to be introduced, then grow over the course of the story, making it really sweet to read about. The love in this book, however, was the complete opposite! Also, there was a horrible love triangle that was painful to watch play out. Now, I can handle a well-written love triangle, but this one was just atrocious. There were two insta-love moments in this book, which I didn’ t think was ever possible in a book, and it wasn’t that I didn’t like the guys, it was just that it was introduced so horribly.
There were several things that I found deeply wrong about this book. One was Juliet, but I’ll get to that rant later…actually, I’m going to talk a bit about her now. Let me explain this situation: Juliet’s father dissects animals and makes them human, and Juliet finds out by snooping. So she’s in the operating room, her dad isn’t there, and Montgomery walks in. So what does she do? She makes out with him on the operating table, where her dad tortured animals. I know that this is kind of a stupid thing to be upset about, but I’m an animal lover, and I hate it when animals are hurt. Not to mention, there’s got to be blood on that table. Why on earth would you make out with someone on a blood-soaked torture table?!
Another thing was Montgomery and the father’s relationship. When it suited Shepard and the book, the father treated Montgomery like “a son” and called him that too. But then, 10 pages later, Montgomery is no longer “his son” and the father hates him. This was so annoying because it just went back and forth, love, hate, son, not son, and it was so obvious that Shepard just manipulated that relationship as it suited the story.

And then we get to the characters. *deep breath*. I’m going to save Juliet for last and am just going to talk about the love interests. For the record, I’m Team Montgomery! I don’t have anything against Edward, I just think that Montgomery is a nicer guy. He’s nice, caring, gentle, and you can tell that he really cares about Juliet. I just didn’t get those vibes from Edward, and he wasn’t very attractive in any way. Honestly, I don’t understand why either of them put up with Juliet. Montgomery DEFINITELY didn’t deserve to be treated the way he was.
And now we get to the manipulative bitch that used these two innocent guys for absolutely no reason. Can’t figure out who that is? Well I’ll tell you – Juliet. If Juliet was to introduce herself to you, she might say something like this: “Hi, my name’s Juliet. I’m a madman’s daughter – and I’m a bit loony myself. I’m a bitch who used two guys just for the run of it. I’m annoying, clueless, and am super proud of my father for torturing animals.” You said it Juliet, not me. She is easily in the top three of my Worst Female Characters list. She was weak, annoying, helpless, and a user. She went back and forth between Montgomery and Edward –“ I love this one, no I love this one.” And even though she loved Montgomery, she was still fantasizing about kissing Edward! AND, as if that wasn’t enough, she was proud of her dad for murdering animals. And all Shepard Juliet blamed it on her dad’s madness being passed down to her because she had “his blood running through her veins.” God, I hate her.

This book had everything going for it! The idea, story line, and writing were AMAZING!  I’m genuinely sad that I didn’t like this book, but Shepard just wrote the insta-love love triangle and Juliet so horribly that I just COULDN’T like this book :(

2 pink flowers


  1. Yeah, the romance was hard to digest, but the rest of the story really resonated with me. It was uber-creepy and suspenseful. And that ending! Sorry you didn't love this one, Emily. :(

  2. This book sounds really creepy I might give it a go, but I'm not too excited for it after reading about how the characters are in the book. :3

  3. That sucks. As you said, the idea sounds really cool, but I guess it didn't work out so well. :p

  4. I LOVE your honest review thank you. I have heard nothing but raves, so it's good to see the other side.


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