November 12

See What I Have Done – Sarah Schmidt

Just after 11am on 4th August 1892, the bodies of Andrew and Abby Borden are discovered. He’s found on the sitting room sofa, she upstairs on the bedroom floor, both murdered with an axe.

It is younger daughter Lizzie who is first on the scene, so it is Lizzie who the police first question, but there are others in the household with stories to tell: older sister Emma, Irish maid Bridget, the girls’ Uncle John, and a boy who knows more than anyone realises.

In a dazzlingly original and chilling reimagining of this most notorious of unsolved mysteries, Sarah Schmidt opens the door to the Borden home and leads us into its murkiest corners, where jealousies, slow-brewed rivalries and the darkest of thoughts reside.

 

My thanks to Anne Cater for the chance to join this blog tour

Lizzie Borden took an axe

and gave her mother forty whacks,

when she saw what she had done

she gave her father forty-one.

I first heard that rhyme years ago – long before I knew it was based upon actual events. I took it at face value and did not give it much thought beyond the fact it was a slightly more grim rhyme than other chants I heard.

What I have never given any thought to in all the years I have known of Lizzie Borden’s gruesome legacy was WHY. What prompted Lizzie to pick up an axe and slay her parents?  I also never gave any consideration to the fact the rhyme may be misleading.  Lizzie Borden was acquitted of the murders and spent less than a year in prison while her trial was conducted. I had always assumed she had been guilty,

Sarah Schmidt takes the Lizzie Borden story and builds a story around the facts as known. She brings us into the Borden home and gives the reader an insight into the lives of the family and how they may have interacted.

The tale is told from a variety of viewpoints and will shift in time a little too. It gives us a chance to see a broader view of family life and of the period and places where the story is set. Fans of historical crime fiction will love See What I have Done. Sarah Schmidt does a fantastic job of capturing the essence of the time and plonks the reader in the midst of a terrible moment letting everything unfold around us.

Compelling reading and at times it is utterly entrancing.

 

See What I Have Done is published by Tinder Press and is available in paperback, digital and audiobook format. You can order a copy here: https://www.amazon.co.uk/See-What-Have-Done-Critically/dp/1472240871/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1510440797&sr=8-1&keywords=see+what+I+have+done&dpID=51juSb%252BhKbL&preST=_SY291_BO1,204,203,200_QL40_&dpSrc=srch


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Posted November 12, 2017 by Gordon in category "Blog Tours", "From The Bookshelf