A Madness So Discreet by Mindy McginnisA Madness So Discreet by Mindy Mcginnis

A Madness So Discreet

byMindy Mcginnis

Paperback | September 6, 2016

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Edgar Award for Best Young Adult Mystery

Mindy McGinnis, the acclaimed author of Not a Drop to Drink and In a Handful of Dust, combines murder, madness, and mystery in a beautifully twisted gothic historical thriller perfect for fans of novels such as Asylum and The Diviners as well as television’s True Detective and American Horror Story.

Grace Mae is already familiar with madness when family secrets and the bulge in her belly send her to an insane asylum—but it is in the darkness that she finds a new lease on life. When a visiting doctor interested in criminal psychology recognizes Grace’s brilliant mind beneath her rage, he recruits her as his assistant. Continuing to operate under the cloak of madness at crime scenes allows her to gather clues from bystanders who believe her less than human. Now comfortable in an ethical asylum, Grace finds friends—and hope. But gruesome nights bring Grace and the doctor into the circle of a killer who will bring her shaky sanity and the demons in her past dangerously close to the surface.

Title:A Madness So DiscreetFormat:PaperbackDimensions:400 pages, 8 × 5.31 × 0.9 inPublished:September 6, 2016Publisher:HarperCollinsLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0062320874

ISBN - 13:9780062320872


Rated 3 out of 5 by from Seemed like three different books in one 3.5 So, not going to lie, this book was kind of all over the place. Onced finished, I felt like I had read a series of three novellas. But, that being said, I certainly enjoyed it. Give me a book set in historical 1800s, with asylums, mentally unhinged characters, murders, and a crime solving duo, and I'm bound to find something I like about it. **CAUTION, THINGS OF A SPOILERISH NATURE LIE AHEAD** The first part of the book opens up with Grace imprisoned in a sinister asylum in Boston. The overseers are nothing short of evil, and you meet some truely unwell characters. You are thrown right into the terrors of living within a 1800s asylum. The haunting feeling that the cover and description promises the reader is certainly delivered in this section. But unfortunately, for those who were hoping that this intro would set the tone for the rest of the book, it doesn't last long. Part two finds Grace smuggled out of Boston to an asylum in Ohio, and this new locale couldn't be more different. Yes it is still an asylum, but if you are looking for haunting, deranged characters, you'd be hard pressed to find one. It felt like Grace and her friends were simply at summer camp. But, I loved it. Reason 1: Dr. T teaching Grace about the science of criminal psychology. I would love an ongoing series of these two solving murders in 1800s Ohio. I felt like I was reading a historically set episode of CSI. Reason 2: Nell. Hands down my favorite character. Like so many woman of that time she was used and then thrown to the way side. Her crass humour and take no prisoners attitude adds some great humour to the book. Bringing us to part three. Throughout the entire book there is the underlying story of Grace's father and how she ended up in the asylum in the first place. All of this finally comes to a head in the final part of the book. As happy as I am that her father got what was coming to him, the book again shifted into something different, this time into a courtroom drama. There may be a slight disconnect between backdrops and plot while the book progresses, but there are enough themes to keep the book flowing. And, even though there was some heavy subject matter in MsD, I found this a quick and, dare I say it, fun read.
Date published: 2018-08-24
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Want more of the characters I'm not sure what I expected from this book. I knew almost nothing about it when I picked it up; I follow the author on Twitter and the summary sounded right up my alley. I guess I'm glad that it was neither a) hyped so strongly that it could never meet my expectations nor b) disparaged enough to make me skip it; I thoroughly enjoyed it, though if I'd read some of the reviews of it before I started, I may have noticed the flaws more. I've recently discovered that I have very little tolerance for "explainy" passages in books, especially if it's done in narration. This has very, very little explanation within it, which lends it a sort of weird, dreamlike atmosphere without sacrificing realistic descriptions. I did find that some of the little reveals early on were pretty predictable (the paternity of the baby, the type of treatment Dr. Thornhollow provided), but it ends in a nice twist that's unexpected, if a little too convenient. The characters are excellent, well-rounded, likable where they're supposed to be likable and horrible when they're supposed to be horrible. I found myself strongly on Grace's side throughout, even when she was making objectively bad decisions. I also LOVED her friendships! I wanted more more more of Grace, Nell, and Elizabeth just hanging out and being friends. [!!SPOILER!!] I worried that Grace and Thornhollow's banter meant that they would end up "together" -- especially with the little comments about "what people must think" and Grace dreaming about him... but I'm so glad they didn't. I mean, I'd kind of ship it if there weren't weird power dynamics in play, but there are, and also I'm tired of unnecessary romantic subplots. So A+++ for platonic male/female friendship!! [END SPOILER] Overall: Liked it a lot; didn't love it. More interested in the atmosphere and the characters than the actual plot. Not super into the conveniently neat way things all wrapped up. Want MORE of the characters, but don't want it badly enough to read a sequel or series... might seek out some fanfic if I can find it.
Date published: 2018-01-15
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Not Bad! Was a little hard to get into, but it was good once it got its grounding!
Date published: 2017-11-22
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Decent Wasn't disappointed but also wasn't left with a euphoric sense of excitement. It was long at parts and hard to get into but once it got moving, it was a relatively nicely paced novel
Date published: 2017-05-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved It Some words I would use to describe this book are thrilling, amazing, riveting, beautifully crafted and haunting. As soon as you read the first words, the story will capture you. Grace's character is so awesome and well thought out. I 100% recommend this book.
Date published: 2016-11-25
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved It Some words I would use to describe this book are thrilling, amazing, riveting, beautifully crafted and haunting. As soon as you read the first words, the story will capture you. Grace's character is so awesome and well thought out. I 100% recommend this book.
Date published: 2016-11-25

Editorial Reviews

“Brutal, relentless, and haunting. Every character in A Madness So Discreet is more colorful and unforgettable than the last. With a realistic, emotionally complex, and clever heroine, readers will find themselves rooting for Grace from page one. Her story and McGinnis’s style are too gripping to ignore.”