Blue Asylum

Blue Asylum

A Novel

Book - 2013
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"Excellent pacing and strong character development . . . animate not only the inmates at the Sanibel Asylum but the characters from the preasylum lives of Iris and Ambrose. A first-rate choice for fans of intelligent historical romances." —Library Journal, starred review

"A first-rate choice for fans of intelligent historical romances."—Library Journal, starred review

Amid the mayhem of the Civil War, Iris Dunleavy is put on trial by her husband, convicted of madness, and sent to Sanibel Asylum to be restored to a compliant Virginia plantation wife. But her husband is the true criminal; she is no lunatic, only guilty of disagreeing on notions of cruelty and property.

On this remote Florida island, Iris meets a wonderful collection of inmates in various states of sanity, including Ambrose Weller, a Confederate soldier haunted by war, whose dark eyes beckon to her. Can love in such a place be real? Can they escape, and will the war have left any way—any place—for them to make a life together?

"An absorbing story that explores both the rewards and perils of love, pride, and sanity."—Publishers Weekly

"With Blue Asylum, Hepinstall presents the reader with the rare and delicious quandary of whether to race through and find out what happens to her characters or to linger over her vivid, beautifully crafted sentences. For me, the only resolution was to read it twice." —Hillary Jordan, author of Mudbound and When She Woke

"A gripping story of love and madness in the midst of the Civil War—I couldn’t put it down!"—Kathleen Grissom, author of The Kitchen House

Baker & Taylor
Arrested and declared insane for seeking justice for her plantation owner husband's slaves at the height of the Civil War, Iris Dunleavy endures a lengthy institutional "rehabilitation" under the eye of a pompous superintendent.

Publisher: Boston : Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2013, c2012
Edition: 1st Mariner Books ed. --
ISBN: 9780544002227
Branch Call Number: FIC Hepin
Characteristics: 270 p


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Jul 19, 2016

Literary prose. Very effective use of color references on nearly every page. Iris and Ambrose inspired my sympathy and admiration.

Sep 17, 2014

Beautifully written and very engaging.

Jan 24, 2013

Original, beautifully written.

Aug 02, 2012

I confess I did not finish this book. The premise is engaging; who can resist the idea of a plantation wife imprisoned in a Florida asylum? But the story was plodding, the writing pedestrian, and the characters superficially limned. It wasn't awful, but hey, life is too short to finish uninspired books.

Very good!

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