I’m a big fan of Alice Hoffman, one of my all time favorite books was The Dove Keepers a few years ago. And this novel for today’s review is an earlier work of Hoffman. I also really enjoyed it. Here is my book review The Museum of Extraordinary Things by Alice Hoffman.
Coney Island in the early 20th century was a place of freak shows and mystics. Coralie Sardie is the daughter of a sinister man who runs the Museum of Extraordinary Things. As Coralie grows and is becoming a woman, she is also becoming aware that things are not perhaps as they seem. She begins to suspect her father does not have her well-being in mind.
When Coralie turns 13, her father puts her in the freak show, as a mermaid. But one night while training in the frigid Hudson River Coralie stumbles upon a photographer bane Eddie Cohen and she falls in love. Eddie, who photographs the horrific Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire also becomes entangled in a mystery, and that mystery will bring him to Coralie’s door. And tragedy will nearly keep them apart.
Hoffman always leans towards the mystical and magical and she does so brilliantly in The Museum of Extraordinary Things. A time in New York’s history when things were changing, the characters in this novel share the struggles and triumphs of worker’s rights, women’s rights, disabled rights and much more.
*****Five stars for The Museum of Extraordinary Things by Alice Hoffman.
Read last week’s book review Year of Wonders by Geraldine Brooks.
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