Thanks to Harper Books for the free advanced copy in exchange for my honest review.
THE MERMAID AND MRS. HANCOCK – Imogen Hermes Gowar
Another stunning book cover for the season 🙂
My Thoughts: 4/5 stars!
I’ll start by saying that this is a solid debut novel. Beautifully written and incredibly atmospheric, THE MERMAID AND MRS. HANCOCK is one historical fiction novel your find yourself captivated with. Another good thing to note – if you’re looking for a fantasy novel focused on mermaids, then you may leave disappointed after finishing. The mermaid aspect is not the main focus to the novel.
Once again, going into this blind really helped me. I think it also helped that I saw this book mainly categorized as historical fiction on Goodreads, so I had an idea of what to expect. Set in the late 1700’s we meet a widowed merchant, Jonah Hancock. He lives a lonely life but all of that changes when one of his ships returns with something unexpected, a mermaid. Hancock decides to put this discovery on display and quickly becomes the talk of London.
What I loved the most about this novel was the writing. There is no doubt that Gowar is a talented writer and I’m shocked that this is a debut novel. She sets the scene perfectly and transports the readers to 1700’s London. The characters were well-developed and I was keen to know what was going to become of this mermaid.
There is no doubt that Gowar can write and weave a beautiful story and the research on 1700’s London is very apparent. Incredible detail and memorable characters made for an engrossing read. There were a couple of parts where I felt a lull but they didn’t last long.
If you’re looking for a great historical fiction novel with a hint of wonder, then this is the next book for you! I will be keeping an eye out for more from Gowar in the future.
What’s your favorite setting for historical fiction novels?