Staff Review: A Mad, Wicked Folly
Seventeen-year-old Victoria Darling longs to be an artist; however, when her love of art leads to expulsion from her French finishing school, her high society London parents bring her home and lay out a plan for her rehabilitation, which includes an arranged marriage to a young man from a proper family. Her alternative: to be banished to a life of near-solitude with her unmarried aunt in Norfolk who has no use for art, literature, or fun of any kind. Victoria still plans to apply to the Royal College of Art without her parents’ consent, and her pursuit of this goal causes her path to cross with suffragettes and a police constable sympathetic to their cause. The resulting interactions fuel further questioning of the demands society places on her as a young woman. This heartfelt and often humorous book, which is young adult fiction, will appeal to fans of historical fiction of all ages. Fans of Downton Abbey are likely to enjoy this book since it explores the pressures on young women of the Edwardian era and depicts “the season” as it would have been experienced by the Crawley daughters.