The Illness Lesson, Claire Beams (paperback, Feb 2021)


Modern ghost story and a masterful scream of female outrage...

Haunting, intense and irresistible, The Illness Lesson is an extraordinary debut about women's minds and bodies, and the time-honoured tradition of doubting both. In 1871, at an elite new school designed to shape the minds of young women, the inscrutable and defiant Eliza Bell has been overwhelmed by an inexplicable illness.

Before long, the other girls start to succumb to its peculiar symptoms - rashes, tics, night wanderings and fits. As the disease takes hold, teacher Caroline Hood tries desperately to hide her own symptoms, but the powers-that-be turn to a sinister physician with dubious methods. Does Caroline have the courage to confront the all-male, all-knowing authorities of her world and protect the young women in her care?

Belongs on the shelf with your Margaret Atwood and Naomi Alderton! 


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