WRONGED. HANGED. ALIVE? (AND TRUE!)
Anne can't move a muscle, can't open her eyes, can't scream. She lies immobile in the darkness, unsure if she'd dead, terrified she's buried alive, haunted by her final memory—of being hanged. A maidservant falsely accused of infanticide in 1650 England and sent to the scaffold, Anne Green is trapped with her racing thoughts, her burning need to revisit the events—and the man—that led her to the gallows.
Meanwhile, a shy 18-year-old medical student attends his first dissection and notices something strange as the doctors prepare their tools . . . Did her eyelids just flutter? Could this corpse be alive?
My thoughts: "Hanged for infanticide at Oxford Assizes in 1650. Restored to the world and died again 1665." Woah! That definitely caught my attention! To top it off, this was based on a true story of a young girl named Anne Green. I completely forgot that I had this book in my TBR pile. I am so glad that I decided to start off the year with it for it had me hooked from the very first page!
I know that Mary Hooper took some liberties in recreating Anne's story, but I was completely fascinated and horrified of everything that Anne had to go through. I couldn't begin to imagine the terror that she experienced: being forced to sleep with her young master, being mistreated by the staff, getting pregnant as an unwed girl, having an early birth, taken to jail, and being hanged for a crime that she did not commit. Though this was an easy and fast read, the details were rich enough that I was able to vividly illustrate the events in my head and feel what Anne felt.
The story was also interestingly told from two points of views. The first one was of Anne's. She was in a "coma" state after the hanging. She was lost in the darkness not knowing what was happening, so she recounted the events that led to her demise instead. The second point of view was that of Robert in the third person. He was attending his first dissection as one the requirements in becoming a doctor. Because of him, Anne was saved. The chapters jumped back and forth between these two characters, taking the reader to the past and to the present.
As much as I enjoyed the book, the second part (which were the last three chapters of the book) dragged for me. I was glad that there was a happy ending, but I did not like how it was told. It seemed too good to be true and I felt exasperated on how it was quickly wrapping up. Does that make sense? It was done abruptly but it dragged? However, I appreciated that the author included a note that straightened out the facts about Anne and included the actual newsprint about Anne's resurrection.
As a whole, I found this book to be fascinating. I was taught of a miraculously event that happened in the 1600s in England. I recommend Newes from the Grave to anyone who enjoys light, historical fiction. I rate it:
This TBR book counts for the #ShelfLove Challenge.