"A fine gothic novel…Be warned: Corpses abound." —Washington Post
At South Carolina Medical College, Dr. Jacob Thacker is on probation for Xanax abuse. His interim career—working university public relations—takes an unnerving detour into the past when the bones of African American slaves are unearthed on campus.
In a parallel narrative set in the nineteenth century, Nemo ("no man"), a university slave purchased for his unusual knife skills, becomes an unacknowledged member of the surgical faculty by day—and by night, a "resurrectionist," responsible for procuring bodies for medical study. An unforgettable character, by turns apparently insouciant, tormented, and brilliant, Nemo will seize his self-respect in ways no reader can anticipate.
With exceptional storytelling pacing and skill, Matthew Guinn weaves together past and present to relate a Southern Gothic tale of shocking crimes and exquisite revenge.
A 2014 Edgar Award Finalist for Best First Novel.
Wow! I bought this book on the recommendation of a friend and was hooked after the first few pages. The characters of this story are developed in a fantastic way. Guinn tells the story that shifts back in time to reveal dark secrets and cause the characters - and the reader - to come to grips with some terrifying truths. Our book club is going to read this, and I am so excited to see the group dive head first in to this book like I did.
Just finished this book because a friend of a friend recommended it our book club. While the historical facts the book is based upon are fascinating, Guinn's writing does not do them justice in either the 19th or 20th century chapters of the tale(s). All the black people are stereotypes and the white characters do not fare much better. I only finished it so I could give a fair critique at our next book club meeting. And, yes, this is a real person writing this review who bought the book.