- Paperback: 378 pages
- Publisher: Pleasure Boat Studio (Aug. 30 2006)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1929355300
- ISBN-13: 978-1929355303
- Product Dimensions: 13.3 x 2.5 x 21.6 cm
- Shipping Weight: 408 g
- Average Customer Review: Be the first to review this item
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #981,478 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
The Case of Emily V. Paperback – Aug 30 2006
No Kindle device required. Download one of the Free Kindle apps to start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, and computer.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
From Publishers Weekly
Oatley's subtle and insightful debut novel, which won the Commonwealth Writers Prize for Best First Book, explores human psychology through three perspectives—that of the title character, an accomplished young woman traumatized by guilt at her role in the death of a British diplomat, who was her lecherous guardian; Sigmund Freud, whom she consults to ease her mental suffering; and Sherlock Holmes, enlisted by his brother, Mycroft, to probe the man's death. The author manages to make each narrative convincing, and for readers used to poor imitations of the Watson voice by numerous pasticheurs, Oatley's rendition of the Baker Street duo will be a pleasant surprise. The book has more in common with less conventional, deeper looks at what makes Holmes tick, like Mitch Cullin's A Slight Trick of the Mind, and will linger longer than with lighter fare like Nicholas Meyer's The Seven-Per-Cent Solution. (Nov.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
|5 star (0%)|
|4 star (0%)|
|3 star (0%)|
|2 star (0%)|
|1 star (0%)|
Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
The interleaving of the diary and case notes with the narrative works very well. The time period is splendid as women were just beginning to realize they'd gotten a raw deal and wanted more rights and freedoms. Emily and her friend Sara are women of their times. They know where they stand in society and they also know what they want and that they have to balance their desires with what will be accepted. And they know what mask to put on to manage to have what they want and to seem to be what society at their level demands.
As for the psychoanalysis with Freud, well it gave me a lot of laughs since we know from Emily's diary what really happened and we know from the case notes what he's disbelieved and ignored as hysteria on the part of Emily. Or, maybe it was just funny to me because I majored in psychology and I never did think Freud understood women -- he only understood his society's view of women through his own prejudices, but then he was a man of his times too.
As for Holmes and Watson, they're spot on if you've read all the Arthur Conan Doyle books. All in all this is a wonderful pastiche and might have been story, that brings Freud, Holmes, and Watson together. I thought it was a wonderful way to pull off the story.
In 1904 Vienna Emily V cannot sleep due to evil dreams and who cannot eat due to delicious smells making her nauseous. She knows why as she killed Charles S. She has seen Professor Freud, the physician at the urgings of Sara and knows someone from England investigates. She ponders just telling everyone the truth that she suffers from guilt because she is guilty.
THE CASE OF EMILY V rotates perspective between the title star, Watson's case description, and Freud's presentations and notes. The story line grips the reader from the start as a historiographic analysis of Freud and Holmes (in the sleuth's case through a Watson filter) makes their "meeting" genuine. The two celebrities stay in character throughout even when they learn they share the same case though one from a mental health viewpoint and the other from a homicide stance. Freud is arrogant as he pompously knows it all while Holmes is smug and moodily knows it all. Though the encounter has been written in THE SEVEN-PER-CENT SOLUTION, this is a more exhilarating novel as the audience becomes more enthralled with the minds of the characters.