Publishing year: 2014
The new book I started last night has grabbed my attention from the very beginning, and I find it fascinating.
It takes place in 1888 in New York, and the main character is Nellie Bly. The story is based on true facts, and most of the characters existed at the time. Nellie Bly is a journalist, and after eight months of being refused by most newspapers in New York, the World gives her an opportunity. So she passes herself off as an insane woman, and gets sent to Bellevue asylum where she spends ten days, being treated in the most horrible manner and witnessing the way the staff humiliates and bets the patients. The newspaper lawyer gets her out, and she writes a story which makes her popular and also gets to change the policy of the asylum. Apart from this, after her visit to the asylum she gets to know Dr. Ingram, who is a kind and decent man, and they start a sexual, love relationship. Nellie is wary around the doctor, and even though she trusts and loves him, she is always guarded in her acts and words since experience has taught her to expect the worst from men.
After her story about the asylum, the owner of the newspaper Mr. Pulitzer, assigns her a difficult task. He was friends with the poet Emma Lazarus, who died six months ago of cancer. Yet, Mr. Pulitzer thinks there was foul play in her death and wants Nellie to investigate it. So begrudgingly, Nellie starts her investigations. She finds out that the two individuals that are likely to be involved in murder are Dr. Baker, who was the last doctor Emma saw and prescribed arsenic for the disease, and Charles DeKay, who is a arts critic for another newspaper and apparently had a relationship with Emma Lazarus. Nellie finds much opposition to find out about the facts related to Emma’s death. Dr. Baker gets rid of Emma’s blood samples, and DeKay states that Emma committed suicide since she was prone to dark moods. Nellie is not so sure about it, and a very powerful man Jay Gould asks to see her and also thinks Emma Lazarus couldn’t commit suicide as DeKay claims. Nellie is coming to realize that she’s putting herself into danger, and Jay Gould and DeKay have already warned her about it.
I’m really loving the book. So interesting!