A White Room was featured as a Notable Page Turner in Shelf Unbound Magazine and named 2013's Best Cross-Genre Title by USA Book News.
At the close of the Victorian Era, society still expected middle-class women to be "the angels of the house," even as a select few strived to become something more. In this time of change, Emeline Evans dreamed of becoming a nurse. But when her father dies unexpectedly, Emeline sacrifices her ambitions and rescues her family from destitution by marrying John Dorr, a reserved lawyer who can provide for her family.
John moves Emeline to the remote Missouri town of Labellum and into an unusual Gothic house where her sorrow and uneasiness edge toward madness. Furniture twists and turns before her eyes, people stare out at her from empty rooms, and the house itself conspires against her. The doctor diagnoses hysteria, but the treatment merely reinforces the house's grip on her mind.
Emeline only finds solace after pursuing an opportunity to serve the poor as an unlicensed nurse. Yet in order to bring comfort to the needy she must secretly defy her husband, whose employer viciously hunts down and prosecutes unlicensed medical practitioners. Although women are no longer burned at the stake in 1900, disobedience is a symptom of psychological defect, and hysterical women must be controlled.
Based on historical trends of the era and inspired by Gothic Victorian novels The Yellow Wallpaper, The Secret Garden, and Wuthering Heights, author Stephanie Carroll has taken women's empowerment in fiction to an all new level in this inspiring debut.
"A novel of grit, independence, and determination ... An intelligent story, well told."
Renée Thompson, author of The Plume Hunter and The Bridge at Valentine
"The best historical fiction makes you forget it's fiction and forget it's historical. Reminiscent of The Yellow Wallpaper ... the thoughtful, intricate story Carroll relates is absolutely mesmerizing."
Eileen Walsh, Ph.D. U.S. Women's History, University of San Diego
historical drama, 19th Century
historical drama, Metaphysical
historical drama, Mystery
historical drama, Nursing
historical drama, Women’s Rights
Literary Historical, House
Literary Historical, Hysteria
Literary Historical, Psychological
Literary Historical, Symbolic
Literary Historical, Victorian
Gothic Romance, 19th Century
Gothic Romance, Marriage
Gothic Romance, Turn of the Century
Gothic Romance, Victorian Era
Gothic Romance, Women’s History
Gothic Romance, Victorian
Historical Suspense, Arranged Marriage
Historical Suspense, Friendship
Historical Suspense, Medical
Historical Suspense, Nursing
Historical Suspense, Psychological
Historical Suspense, US
Historical Suspense, Victorian
Historical Women’s Fiction, 19th Century
Historical Women’s Fiction, America
Historical Women’s Fiction, Historical Marriage
Historical Women’s Fiction, Isolation
Historical Women’s Fiction, Women's Rights
Historical Women’s Fiction, Victorian Era
Victorian Historical Fiction, Historical
Victorian Historical Fiction, Hysteria
Victorian Historical Fiction, Midwifery
Victorian Historical Fiction, Turn of the Century
Victorian Historical Fiction, United States
Victorian Historical Fiction, Victorian
Victorian Historical Romance, Marriage
Victorian Historical Romance, Medical
Victorian Historical Romance, Nursing
Victorian Historical Romance, Women's Rights
Victorian Historical Romance, Byronic Hero
Victorian Historical Romance, Gothic