Books Worth Buying: Women of Magdalene

18 Sep

Women of Magdalene by Rosemary Poole-Carter

For today’s “Books Worth Buying” segment, I want to introduce you to “Women of Magdalene” by Rosemary Poole-Carter.

This book immersed me into the storyline from the very beginning. The concept of the asylum as a storage facility for women with questionable behavior and/or mental health issues was an interesting premise to run with. The setting of this novel is one I am familiar with: post-Civil War Louisiana. Even though I am a native of the Pelican State, any reader will be swept away through the lush and evocative imagery provided by the author. This is a book that I find I can come back to over and over and still enjoy the richness of each word. I recommend you do best to pick up a copy (I believe it’s out of print) with Amazon’s used books or at (my favorite place to buy used books).

Description: Young Dr. Robert Mallory, fresh from three blood-soaked years as a field surgeon on the battlefields of the Civil War, makes his way on foot to the Magdalene Ladies’ Lunatic Asylum to assume his duties as the resident general practitioner. When he recovers the body of a young patient in a nearby river, the callous indifference of the authorities disturbs him. He soon finds that mistreatment of the patients is commonplace and that the doctors who run the asylum have little interest in treating the patients—many of whom have no mental disability but have been abandoned there by their families. Before Dr. Mallory can expose the abuse of patients at the facility, and the misogyny and racism at its core, another patient is found dead. Kingston hastily blames a young “Negress” employed by the asylum and shoots her lover and her on the spot. After she is locked up and charged with the murder of a white woman, she is taken from her cell and lynched. Mallory is determined to expose Kingston and exonerate the girl, but Kingston has other plans. Lushly evocative, written with elegance and beauty, this novel is a richly satisfying story of that long-vanished world of slavery and southern gentility. – courtesy of

Links to buy:


One Response to “Books Worth Buying: Women of Magdalene”

  1. writermirandastork September 18, 2012 at 9:17 pm #

    Another awesome book! And I love that this one is a used ‘proper’ book-the best kind. I’ll definitely have to look this one up, it sounds as though it has a similar feel (in terms of how the characters are viewed, and the setting) of another favourite of mine, ‘A Daughter Of Fortune’. 🙂


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