A White Room
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 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 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.
"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
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Feminist Fiction, Historical
Feminist Fiction, Hysteria
Feminist Fiction, Midwifery
Feminist Fiction, Turn of the Century
Feminist Fiction, United States
Feminist Fiction, Victorian
Gothic Historical Fiction
Gothic Historical Fiction, House
Gothic Historical Fiction, Hysteria
Gothic Historical Fiction, Psychological
Gothic Historical Fiction, Symbolic
Gothic Historical Fiction, Victorian
Strong Female Lead, 19th Century
Strong Female Lead, Marriage
Strong Female Lead, Turn of the Century
Strong Female Lead, Victorian Era
Strong Female Lead, Women’s History
Strong Female Lead, Victorian
Metaphysical Fiction, Arranged Marriage
Metaphysical Fiction, Friendship
Metaphysical Fiction, Medical
Metaphysical Fiction, Nursing
Metaphysical Fiction, Psychological
Metaphysical Fiction, US
Metaphysical Fiction, 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
Midwife Fiction, 19th Century
Midwife Fiction, Drama
Midwife Fiction, Metaphysical
Midwife Fiction, Mystery
Midwife Fiction, Nursing
Midwife Fiction, Women’s Rights
Victorian Historical Fiction, Marriage
Victorian Historical Fiction, Medical
Victorian Historical Fiction, Nursing
Victorian Historical Fiction, Women's Rights
Victorian Historical Fiction, Byronic Hero
Victorian Historical Fiction, Gothic