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The Virgin Cure

CHARACTERS æ PDF, DOC, TXT or eBook ✓ Ami McKay

H maids against the virgin cure Be sure to read the epilogue for on thisSeeing McKay read from the book and talk about her personal connection to the story deepened my appreciation and respect for her as a person and author I feel so grateful to this fellow Nova Scotia after reading The Birth House and now The Virgin Cure for choosing such important and compelling subject matter when sharing her abundant story telling talents with usLastly while reading The Virgin Cure iTunes was shuffling through my 2000 song library and played Hawksley Workman s song A Moth is Not a Butterfly Coincidence perhaps but the lyrics help explain why Moth is the perfect name for McKay s protagonist Two of Workman s stanzas for me capture the bleak yet hopeful plight of this tenacious insectA moth is not a butterflyAnd I know why I know whyIt kind of makes you want to cryThat a moth is not a butterflyBus some are happy in the bluest skyAnd others search in the dark of nightAnd sadness is a silent rightA moth is not a butterflyIf you ve read The Virgin Cure or plan to please share your thoughts in the comments section My experience with it has been too brief thus far and I d love some dialogue What a uniue book A story based on a dark time in early American history Young girls were soldtaken in and then their virginity was brokered by a Madam for a high fee What happened to these girls next was anyone s guess They turned into prostitutes selling themselves away piece by piece In the later 1800s men carrying Syphilis often thought that they could be cured by sleeping with an innocent virgin Her innocent blood would cure him hence the Virgin CureInteresting subject matter and at times it was tough to read Moth is a strong protagonist who manages her way through New York City while trying to secure a better life for herself outside the slums of Chrystie Street Throughout this book there were little anecdotes and news articles supporting the story that was being told through Moth s eyesThe ending was a little too abrupt and tied up for me I felt like the last chapter was un necessary and didn t really add anything to the story for me A very interesting enjoyable and informative historical novel set in the mid 1800 s detailing the plight of families struggling to survive the slum houses of lower Manhattan based on actual facts from research of author McKay s Great Great Grandmother s life as a doctor during the eraMoth is a 12 year old girl abandoned by her father and sold by her gypsy fortune teller mother to serve as a ladies maid to the unbalanced and abusive Mrs Wentworth Moth eventually escapes the house and finds her mother is gone from the tenement Living on the streets wondering why her mother has left without a word a starving Moth meets up with Mae who introduces her to Miss Everett s brothel for young virgin girls During her initial physical examination she meets Dr Sadie who tries to convince her of the many dangers of life as a whore which eventually leads Moth to find out about The Virgin CureThere is so much to tell in this story with many great character sloved Mr Dink I was hooked early on Don t know why I didn t rate it five stars I was looking forward to reading this the story sounded interesting granted disturbing but also interesting I like reading novels set in this time period 1871 Most of what I read during this period takes place in England so I was looking forward to reading about the filth and slums of New York CityMoth is twelve years old abandoned by her father and sold into servitude by her mother she becomes a maid to the disturbed and abusive Mrs Wentworth Moth uickly realizes she must find another place where she can make a livingShe eventually finds her way to Miss Emma Everett who runs a specialized brothel selling virgins for a hefty profit Dr Sadie is the female physician who attends to all of Miss Everett s girls and she develops a special fondness for MothI was disappointed by the lack of depth of this story The author chose to insert the thoughts of Dr Sadie at various points in the story and they often are inset into the narration on the page Sometimes fictitious articles from the newspapers are given a spotlight on a page here or there and the author also begins each chapter with a poem or passage of writing All of this extra material detracted from the main story and interrupted the flow of narration The middle of the story seemed to drag on and the ending seemed a bit too neat and The middle of the story seemed to drag on and the ending seemed a bit too neat and for my tastesI really enjoyed the beginning of the story when Moth is trying to find her way in Mrs Wentworth s household She developed a friendship there that was one of the most engaging and satisfying parts of the book for me but that relationship didn t continue through the rest of Moth s story Certain events that happen in Moth s life while she s living with Miss Everett seem incongruous with the rest of what s going on in the story It felt like the author couldn t decide which story she wanted to tell so instead of choosing one she told bothI liked some of the details and some of the relationships between the characters but overall I was left wanting to hear about Moth s experience and her feelings Update I ve had three trolls on this extremely inoffensive review What is there about it that attracts these negative people to tell me how I shouldshould not write a review I kittenised the last one That usually pisses them off This is a Book I Will Not Read I Have I will not read I have tread on thin ice here since my last will not read review was hidden although probably not by the author s reuest By someone who calls themselves A Hole I was told So thin ice it isI read a review of this book that made me think I would enjoy it so I looked up the book page and whoever wrote the synopsis had written the ENTIRE story out A 45 line synopsis of the story indeed A blurb would have sufficed So if I bought the book at 2599 it isn t available in the US in paperback I would know exactly what I would be getting from the heroine s unfortunate birth and upbringing through her introduction to and career on the streets through to her expected redemption with difficulties All I would be getting if I paid out is the fleshing out of this story with details and dialogue If this was great literature if this was a long saga that much detail would be unacceptable how much so in what is described by a friend in Fiction Anita Shreve Annie Proulx and Joanne Harris Ami McKay brings to light the story of early forward thinking social warriors creating a narrative that readers will find inspiring poignant adventure filled and utterly unforgettable. ,
Daughter is due to the hardship of their impoverished life together and her personal heartache As ambition goes Ada s mother maximizes her exotic origin by exaggerating her prophetic supernatural abilities and by doing so increases whatever profit she is able to make An interesting trait about Ada s gypsy mother is her partiality to collecting charred trinkets from the wreckage of house fires It is as if perhaps her willingness to settle for charred token items speaks to her submission finally to the horror of her environment her poverty and her inability to overcome itMiss Emma Everett the madam in charge of raising young girls in prostitution on No 73 East Houston Street is surprisingly fair to the girls understanding always their crucial role in her tenacious ambition toward financial success She is clear about her expectations preying in on their youth their beauty and their willingness to succeed in raising their status from almost whore to whore in order to avoid a life on the streets Miss Emma is able to tantalize the girls with material extravagance and special treatment when she feels a girl is able to seduce clients into securing her and her household a fortune She is neither cruel to the girls in the house but strict in their tutelage in beauty and etiuette They are to her neither daughters nor friends but commodities to her social status and her business Miss Emma reflects the materialistic woman who will erase moral boundaries in order to survive and flourish amongst her peers perpetuating men s stereotypes of girls and women and satisfying their sexual appetites while filling her purse Mrs Wentworth though endowed with a high station and riches is inflicted with sorrow anguish and rage desiring power and vengeance on the youth beauty and innocent victims who beguile and surpass her in arousing desire The plot of Mrs Wentworth s cruelty was so difficult to read I had to during numerous times in my reading put the book down It is enough to say Mrs Wentworth s worst enemy is herself in her own torment that she feels compelled as a coping mechanism or an act of survival to inflict the same kind of torment on others Though she is cruel she is in fact not the most degenerate of the characters in the book Though Dr Sadie is a woman of heritage and rich origin her family also ostracizes her because of her choice in pursuing an education and a career that euals that of a man s at that time rather than marriage She boards and works in the New York Infirmary for Indigent Women and Children provides medical care for the young girls who live on East Houston Street and pays regular visits to those who too ill to leave their homes for medical care Dr Sadie the polar opposite of Miss Emma Everett in moral attitude is similar to her in that she works within the rules of a social system to further her goals namely to care for those who are in need Her financial compensation is most likely small compared to her previous lifestyle but provides an outlet where she feels she is doing some good especially toward the young victims that fall prey to the virgin cure mythology Ada Moth Fenwick is the child at the centre of the story whose lowly station in life has left her with few choices in acts of survival amongst the streets of Manhattan She is an embodiment of child woman young as 12 years old innocent in the ways of sexuality yet 12 years old innocent in the ways of sexuality yet by the harsh environment she finds herself in from abandonment of her father an unreuited love from her mother cruelty and humiliation in the service of Mrs Wentworth manipulation by a butler whom she TRUSTS DISHONESTY IN THE CRAFT OF BEGGING AND STEALING dishonesty in the craft of begging and stealing the streets south of East Houston the betrayal of friends in the competition for being the most valuable asset and commodity to Miss Emma Everett to the eventual knowledge and misuse of her own sexuality The stories of these girls and women work together to showcase a hungry desperate and diseased New York of the 1870 s beneath the decadence of mansion and estate dress trains and social elitism Moth is not a butterfly but an active mistress of the night able to hover much like a hummingbird above her circumstances The Virgin Cure is packed with interesting bits of history period advertisements and lush descriptions of dresses from Harper s Bazaar It s a bit like leafing through a wonderful old scrapbook It also makes me want to go out and buy a corset and gloves Okay maybe not the corset The descriptions of it are frighteningI m not yet finished reading the novel but the relationship between the female physician based on McKay s own great grandmother and the young girl Moth is compelling and the details of the underside of 19th century New York are fascinating It s clear that McKay loves her subject matter Like the large bar of dark chocolate I intended to mete out a piece at a time but instead polished off in two days I planned to read Ami McKay s new book The Virgin Cure slowly Despite my best efforts I finished it within a week and am left awed and yet still hungry I hope blogging and talking about it with fellow readers bring me the satiety I seekThe Virgin Cure is the Dickensian style story of Moth a 12 year old girl living on Manhattan s rat ridden Chrystie Street in 1874 To say Moth s is a hard scrabble life is an understatement Abandoned by Moth s father Moth s mother supports the family as a psychic but she shows a shocking lack of foresight for one who purports to see the future Deciding Moth is old enough to start supporting her she kicks Moth out of their home into a situation even rife with abuse than the one Moth is leavingMoth is merchandise bought and sold several times in the story Poor people are depicted throughout the book as inconvenient and an easy target for upper classes that choose to criticize rather than help them The complete lack of sympathy and social services makes for an interesting if upsetting anthropology lesson Much of the historical context is provided through explanatory notes newspaper excerpts and ads that are included in the margins of the book While fascinating I admit I found they distracted from the narrativeThe first person to show Moth real tenderness is Dr Sadie a kindly physician she befriends I learned at the book launch that McKay modeled Dr Sadie on her own great great grandmother who worked treating destitute children and safeguarding fres. Use made headlines around the world returns with a resonant tale inspired by her own great great grandmother’s experiences as a pioneer of women’s medicine in nineteenth century New YorkIn a powerful novel that recalls the evocative. Ami McKay s first novel The Birth House was a phenomenal success I have no doubt that her newly released second novel The Virgin Cure will also be bestseller And it s one of my favourite reads for 2011I was hooked from the opening lineI am Moth a girl from the lowest part of Chrystie Street born to a slum house mystic and the man who broke her heartAnd so begins the story of Moth born into the slums of Manhattan in New York City In 1871 Moth s mother sells her to a wealthy woman looking for a young servant When that situation becomes untenable Moth runs away and finds herself alone on the streets with no prospects Until the owner of a brothel in the Bowery that caters to men looking for young companions who are willing and clean takes her in In Miss Everett s Infant School the most desirous of all are virgins for it is said that a virgin can cure a man of that most scurrilous of diseases syphilisOne bright light in Moth s life is Doctor Sadie one of the first female physicians in New York City who attends the girls at Miss Everett s establishment The idea for the Virgin Cure was based on McKay s search into her own roots Her great great grandmother was a physician in New York CityWhat did I love so much about this book Well everything McKay s characterizations are rich detailed and believable I became so invested in Moth and Dr Sadie sharing their fears and dreams Both of these characters are strong strong female leads staying true to themselves despite the obstacles put before them The setting is ust as much of a player in the novel McKay s depiction of 1870 s New York conjured up vivid scenes crackling with detail McKay includes historical side notes newspaper articles pictures and throughout the book I found myself on the Internet many times following up with the history she presentedUltimately it s a book that is so engrossing so readable so fascinating that I wish I could give it six stars I Winning Sports Betting Strategies with Betaminic Big Data Tools for Football Betting Systems: A step-by-step guide to using the Betamin Builder Data Analysis ... soccer betting systems (English Edition) just can t seem to articulate what a great read this is from such a skilled Canadian story teller Highly highly recommended I m back Didja miss meI read like a ton of books since I last posted a review breastfeeding enough said so I m going to start to try to post reviews reverse chronologically Here goesThe Virgin Cure Everyone s familiar with Chekhov s famous uote that a gun in Act 1 must be fired by the last act Well if you at all agree with this uote then DO NOT READ THIS BOOK Seriously At the beginning I was interested maybe even intrigued I needed to know how all these mysterious loose ends tied up Guess what They don t The book becomes the literary euivalent of your grandmother s rambling tale except you don t get to ask her specific uestions when she goes where was IWhere was I Right lack of resolution Besides that it s a pretty smooth read and the historical fiction aspect is really pretty fascinating I don t think I ve ever seen old New York painted so vividly before If only McKay had kept track of all the loose ends so she could have finished what she very promisingly started Where do I begin with this Moth and her fortune telling mother live in poverty among the mean streets of lower Manhattan To buy food and sometimes liuor Moth s mother will sellust about anything of value she has to survive including Moth 12 year old Moth is brave and street smart but naive when she is sold to a wealthy but deranged woman Believing that she will get to live in a grand house she endures cruelty and torment from the lady of the house Once she escapes she encounters Mae a young girl in training to lose her virginity to the highest bidder among wealthy men Without giving away amy plot have to say that this ended up being one of favorites this year Everytime I opened this book I felt I was transported to that time and place book I felt like I was
*transported to that *
to that and place Moth s world This was descriptive and informative with anecdotes of information among the pages of the story Well written and engrossing Ami McKay writes with storytelling ease of a young girl named Moth by a legendary pear tree on the crossroads of Pear Tree corner As imaginative as this sounds and though the novel is filled with a sort of Cirue du Soleil creativity in the trappings of the book s characters from their costumes to their well manufactured displays of propriety the book is anything but happy It tells of the polarity between decadence and poverty in the streets of New York in 1871 the age of mysterious outbreaks of disease that would come to be known later as typhoid diphtheria smallpox tuberculosis gonnorrhea and syphilis It is in simple terms a story of survival of not only the city s poverty and disease but the ramifications of its poor choices or lack thereof which leads or continues the culture s socially accepted yet somewhat masked moral decline Poor and impoverished families sell their young daughters away into prostitution where they are not only valued for their youth their potential profitable income but also for their certified virginity and innocence But the value tied to a girl s virginity is not entirely driven by a desire toward her innocence and purity but rather driven by a rumoured myth of a virgin cure the belief that a man with disease could cure himself by deflowering a virgin of which the novel is aptly titled The tale is of a 12 year old girl named Ada Moth Fenwick who is left behind by her gypsy mother in poverty by a man whose wandering eye and lustful appetite found a much younger companion by the name of Katie Adams Though this part in the plot is small it is the catalyst that propels Moth into an enslaved life of first servitude then and then prostitution It can also be said that her father s actions were but a mere microcosm of the male psyche at large in the tenements of lower Manhattan in 1871 a foreshadowing of men s dismissive view of marriage and their wives What is left is an array of women who react to their station in life their personal ambitions for survival in prosperity security and if fitting love Ada s mother a gypsy fortuneteller is frugal with her love toward her daughter perhaps as a result of the severity of her abandonment by her husband and the severity of being poor with a child to raise on her own single handedly It would be better to think she did this as an effort to strengthen Ada in tactics of survival but it s too hopeful and assumption As a reader I suspect her coolness toward her. From #1 international bestselling author Ami McKay comes The Virgin Cure the story of a young girl abandoned and forced to fend for herself in the poverty and treachery of post Civil War New York CityMcKay whose debut novel The Birth Ho.