Fiction Friday: The Transformation by Catherine Chidgey

It’s Fiction Friday! Every Friday I will recommend a work of fiction from the stacks (‘stacks’ is librarian jargon for place-where-we-keep-the-books). Today’s recommendation is The Transformation by Catherine Chidgey.

From the Book Description:

“Tampa, Florida, 1898: A hazy frontier where the Old World meets the New, where miracles of transformation are possible and the soil is so fertile that dry sticks take root and flower. Dominating the town is the magisterial new Tampa Bay Hotel and dominating the hotel is an exotic creature by the name of Monsieur Lucien Goulet III, wig maker to the wealthy and glamorous. As winter nears its end, Goulet is entranced by a head of hair belonging to the young widow Marion Unger. But this material, without which he absolutely cannot form his greatest masterpiece, is hard to come by, as it is still attached to its owner.”

I read this last semester. Chidgey did a wonderful job of research on this book. Reading it I got a real feel for what Tampa must have been like when the Plant Hotel first opened. While it’s not a horror story, the villain is remarkably creepy.


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