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The Quick by Lauren Owen

Sarah Broadhurst's view...

There is a surprising twist about a quarter of the way into The Quick which changes everything about how you’ll think, feel, read and enjoy this book and it would be beyond cruel to reveal it here. So all I can say is that this is darkly gothic Victorian thriller with an element of the otherworld, it is atmospheric and the characters brilliantly written.

Who is Sarah Broadhurst

The Good Book Guide logo The Good Book Guide Review. In Owen’s unusual and distinctly Gothic-flavoured debut novel two very different Victorian worlds collide to distinctly macabre effect. In a corner of Yorkshire a pair of siblings are bound together by sudden tragedy, whilst in London’s Aegolius Club the most influential men in England gather for meetings shrouded in the deepest secrecy. What exactly are they and what is the connection between the two groups? An atmospheric chiller evolves, skilfully conjuring a sinister world of the darkest hues. Brooding and densely plotted, it is ambitious in its scope, but certainly delivers a sleek, well-crafted thriller, ideal for fans of the genre.
~ Amanda Hodges


The Quick by Lauren Owen

You are about to discover the secrets of The Quick - But first, reader, you must travel to Victorian England, and there, in the wilds of Yorkshire, meet a brother and sister alone in the world, a pair bound by tragedy. You will, in time, enter the rooms of London's mysterious Aegolius Club - a society of the richest, most powerful men in England. And at some point - we cannot say when - these worlds will collide. It is then, and only then, that a new world emerges, a world of romance, adventure and the most delicious of horrors - and the secrets of The Quick are revealed. Sly and glittering . (Hilary Mantel). Impossible to resist . (Kate Atkinson).

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'A sly and glittering addition to the literature of the macabre ... As soon as you have breathed with relief, much worse horrors begin. It's a skilled, assured performance, and it's hard to believe it is a first novel.' -- Hilary Mantel

'A Gothic blockbuster.' Independent

'Energetically throwing together real history and gothic fantasy, Owen has produced a novel that is macabre, readable and atmospheric.' -- Nick Rennison Sunday Times

'A suspenseful, gloriously atmospheric first novel, and a feast of gothic storytelling that is impossible to resist.' -- Kate Atkinson

'Debut gothic mystery from a new British talent.' -- Kate Figes Mail on Sunday

About the Author

Lauren Owen is twenty-eight years old and grew up in the grounds of an old country house in Yorkshire. Her first attempts at writing as a teenager were Harry Potter fan fictions. She is a graduate of St Hilda's, Oxford, holds an MA in Victorian Literature, is completing a PhD on Gothic writing and fan culture, and is the recipient of the Curtis Brown Prize for best writer on the UEA creative-writing programme. The Quick is her first novel.

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Book Info

Publication date

1st September 2014


Lauren Owen

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Vintage an imprint of Vintage Publishing


528 pages


Historical Fiction
Thriller / Suspense
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Historical fiction



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