In a lowly side-show fair in eighteenth-century England, teenager Mim is struggling to find her worth as an act. Not white, but not black enough to be truly exotic, her pet parrot who speaks four languages is a bigger draw than her. But Alex, the one-armed boxer boy, sees her differently. And she, too, feels newly interested in him.
But then Dr Fox arrives with his scientific kit for producing ‘electrickery’ – feats of electrical magic these bawdy audiences have never seen before. To complete his act, Fox chooses Mim to play the ‘Electrical Venus’. Her popularity – and the electric-shocking kisses she can provide for a penny – mean takings are up, slop is off the menu and this spark between her and Fox must surely be love.
But is this starring role her true worth, or is love worth more than a penny for an electrifying kiss?
I found The Electrical Venus to be a very pleasing and surprising read. I didn’t know too much about the book before starting, but I really enjoyed reading about Mim and Alex. The story is wonderfully written and very difficult to put down once started.
The story is told from both Mim’s and Alex’s perspectives, but sometimes they were talking to their animals, then other times they were just talking to themselves. I really enjoyed reading the book this way because it made the reading experience a little more varied and interesting, as well as also getting to know both the characters a bit more, which gave their characters a bit more depth. I definitely became more invested in both Mim and Alex as characters the more and more I read. There development is a joy to read and one of the main reasons I loved reading this book.
I really liked the setting for The Electrical Venus, both were equally interesting and exciting. I haven’t read many books set in Georgian England, but I really did enjoy reading this one. I was transported back in time, and everything felt so genuine and real. Sometimes authors mess up a little and make the world or setting perfect but the characters sometimes make it a little less believable, however this time the author has not made that mistake. Both the setting and the books characters compliment each other which makes this book a engaging read.
This is the first book I’ve read by this author and I have to say that I will be checking out her other books because I love her writing style. I found it hard to put this book down because I straight from the very beginning I was gripped. The way the author writes down her ideas is addictive and will leave you wanting to read more and more. Her way of painting a scene in your mind is so vivid that it feels like you have just finished watching a film. I felt that the story didn’t become dull at any point, and it kept my interest throughout.
I would definitely recommend this book to historical fiction readers, and readers who want to dive into historical books for the first time. This book isn’t too heavy on detail, but it still brings everything to life and is easy enough to get through. The Electrical Venus is an enjoyable and compelling read that I think most people will enjoy.
I rate this book 4/5 stars
***I was sent a copy of this book for review. Everything in this review is my own honest opinions.***
2 thoughts on “The Electrical Venus by Julie Mayhew”
This looks like a book I would enjoy. I have also really liked some of Julie Mayhew’s previous books. Have you read any of her other books?