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The Caging at Deadwater Manor Kindle Edition
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Top Customer Reviews
The more mature and disturbing content -- the dehumanizing trials suffered by the protagonist during her institutionalization at a legally suspect facility at the hands of vindictive family and sadistic staff -- is handled organically and, to the extent possible, tastefully, reflecting the lived experiences of the protagonist without resorting to gratuitousness. (Nevertheless, I'd recommend against audiences below 16 years of age.) Similarly, I also found the protagonist's reactions to be realistic most of the time despite the outrageous circumstances in which she finds herself.
Furthermore, the reader must interpret whether the narrator is reliable or not, adding another layer to the novel; en route, we question, alongside the protagonist, if we are accurately perceiving the reality of the situation as the story unfolds. As a bonus, although the setting of Tampa is somewhat secondary to the tale, the author clearly knows the area well and that familiarity adds a nice sense of place.
I only had three minor complaints. The novel is set in the present, which did strike me as somewhat odd, as I at first assumed, given the subject matter, that I would be reading a 20th century historical fiction; admittedly, while this sort of occurrence is hopefully more rare today (and sterilization, once not uncommon by force, is now virtually impossible to obtain for a nulliparous woman under age 40 for any reason whatsoever, consent or not), it would be naive to say it's unthinkable. Second, of the two main antagonists at the facility, the orderly is well characterized as a classic abusive partner with the usual complexities; the nurse, on the other hand, simply seems psychopathic; of course, psychopaths exist and would self-select for employment at shady facilities like Deadwater, but I found myself wanting more from her -- some motivation, a story: something besides unexplained hatred. Third, the ending wasn't entirely as satisfying as the meat of the novel, as the story quickly winds down in a few pages what is built in a hundred. (As an aside, it sent shivers down my spine to imagine that many went through what the protagonist did, and many of them spent the rest of their lives that way.)
In closing, I bought this book last night and stayed up all night to finish reading it -- I was anxious to learn the truth and the outcome. That alone makes it worth 5 stars.
Ms. Will shows talent with plotting, pacing, and character development, and after "Deadwater," I am certainly looking forward to her future releases. In the meantime, I recommend reading "Deadwater" as a thoroughly entertaining excursion.
This book sucker punches you in the gut, as you can only witness as 18 year old Jeannie is held captive in an insane asylum. Every word of every horror she is put through will stay with you.
And the ending, oh the ending... That's all I can say about that. Be prepared to be glued to the page. This is an amazing debut novel and I can't wait to find out what other stories Sandie Will has up lurking inside her!
The characters are SO well written it seems like a memoire...which makes it that much more creepy!!
Excellent job Sandie Will and I am looking forward to your next novel!!
This is a very well-written book. It captures your imagination from the first page and compels you to keep reading. The characters are well developed and the story draws you into Jeannie's world. Bravo Ms. Will! I look forward to reading your next book!!
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