Edward Carey, Edward Carey
The wry, macabre, unforgettable tale of an ambitious orphan in Revolutionary Paris, befriended by royalty and radicals alike, who transforms herself into the legendary Madame Tussaud.
In 1761, a tiny, odd-looking girl named Marie is born in a village in Alsace. After the death of her parents, she is apprenticed to an eccentric wax sculptor and whisked off to the seamy streets of Paris, where they meet a domineering widow and her quiet, pale son. Together, they convert an abandoned monkey house into an exhibition hall for wax heads, and the spectacle becomes a sensation. As word of her artistic talent spreads, Marie is called to Versailles, where she tutors a princess and saves Marie Antoinette in childbirth. But outside the palace walls, Paris is roiling: The revolutionary mob is demanding heads, and . . . at the wax museum, heads are what they do.
'A story wondrous fine, full of terrors and marvels.'--Kirkus, Starred Review 'Iremonger torques and tempers our memories of Dickensian London into a singularly jaunty and creepy tale of agreeable misfits. Read it by gas lamp, with a glass of absinthe at your wrist and a fireplace poker by your knee.'--Gregory Maguire, author of WICKED 'Conveyed with so much sympathy and acute observation that it is hard not to be beguiled'--The Times
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