By Anna Mazzola
Published by Tinder Press (14 July 2016)
Set in London in 1837, Anna Mazzola's THE UNSEEING is the story of Sarah Gale, a seamstress and mother, sentenced to hang for her role in the murder of Hannah Brown on the eve of her wedding. Perfect for any reader of Sarah Waters or Antonia Hodgson.
After Sarah petitions for mercy, Edmund Fleetwood is appointed to investigate and consider whether justice has been done. Idealistic, but struggling with his own demons, Edmund is determined to seek out the truth. Yet Sarah refuses to help him, neither lying nor adding anything to the evidence gathered in court. Edmund knows she's hiding something, but needs to discover just why she's maintaining her silence. For how can it be that someone would willingly go to their own death?
The Unseeing is page-turning historical crime fiction. It's a gripping read and I was glued to the book from start to finish. I was particularly fascinated by the underlying true story and this is certainly one I'm interested to explore.
The story focuses on Sarah Gale, who was sentenced to hang for murder, but Sarah refuses to say anything that could either help her case or hinder it. Edmund Fleetwood, the lawyer appointed to investigate, isn't sure whether Sarah's hiding something.
Thanks to Anna Mazzola's gift for storytelling, I also wasn't sure whether or not Sarah could be trusted. The characters are so well developed that I actually cared what happened to them by the end of the book - and would still love to know the 'after'. The vivid descriptions brought 19th century London to life - the sights, smells and sounds - from the very first page.
Anna Mazzola is certainly an author to watch, as this is an amazing debut novel.
I received an Advance Reader Copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
Read my Q&A with Anna here.