Updated: Aug 26
Author: Virginia Fieto
Published: August 2021
Publisher: Liveright Publishing (a division of W. W. Norton & Co.)
Genre: Thriller, Suspense, Psychological thriller, Satire, Psychological Fiction
Some characters become indelibly etched in your memory for the way they build a relationship with you and make you love and want to protect them.
Mrs. March is not one of those characters.
Instead, you will find yourself drawn into this tale in something more akin to an arsenic poisoning happening one drop at a time. You won't taste almonds until it's too late to get away.
You’ll find yourself following Mrs. March through her entitled, neurotic, fussy life out of sheer morbid curiosity at first. And then, becoming the poisoner, and almost with the same angst, you will find yourself waiting breathlessly for the toxin to tighten its grip and fully take effect.
You know from the first pages that Mrs. March is going to spiral. You know that her complexes (of which she has many) will blossom into a brand which, like the scarlet "A" on the cover, will eventually become impossible for literally everyone to ignore.
But how far will she go? What twists will her own neuroses and persecution complex take her into? How long until the Mint green gloves come off and we see the maggots festering beneath?
Fieto is taking us for a ride, and she knows it. She gleefully taunts us in the voice of a magazine article written about the protagonist of Mr. March’s latest novel that her own story’s protagonist is "not intelligent enough to be evil, not chic enough to distract from her many physical flaws, but deliciously abhorrent in a hundred nasty little ways." Upon reading "the reader is drawn in immediately, a gleeful, almost active participant in her downfall…"
Oh, y' all. You know that I'm not going to tell how disastrously far she goes. And Fieto doesn't give up her secrets all at once, either. This book is a forest fire in slow motion, but even if you're not prone to liking novels with unlikable protagonists, I'd still recommend giving this one a try. Like Randle Patrick McMurphy in One Flew over the Cuckoo's Nest, you're likely to find that you simply must know where Mrs. March will take you.
Will she carry you along for the ride?