Goodreads says, ” The wry, macabre, unforgettable tale of an ambitious orphan in Revolutionary Paris, befriended by royalty and radicals, who transforms herself into the legendary Madame Tussaud.”
The year is 1761. Little Marie is born in a village in Switzerland. Her beginnings are quite humble; but all that is subject to change, and drastically.
Marie is orphaned early in her life. She goes on to apprentice with a very strange wax sculptor with whom she bonds with almost immediately. His laboratory is eerie and freakish. Marie finds it a solace from the reality that has become her life. And thus it begins.
Marie becomes so well known that she is summoned by Marie Antionette to the palace of Versailles where she saves Marie Antoinette during childbirth. But we all know what’s going on outside the palace. Real heads are beginning to roll…
From these humble beginnings the monumental business of Madame Tussaud’s Wax Museums have gone on to become a very big business, indeed. They now exist all over the world.
Edward Carey worked in the Madame Tussaud Museum in London for a short time. As a child he had been scared of the wax figures, but as an adult he began to have a healthy appreciation. And look where that has taken him.
This tiny person filled with the determination of a hundred strong humans, managed to create an empire that will live on for eternity.
I found this odd novel compellingly readable and full of quirky characters who helped change history to be a good fit for book clubs this season. There sure is a lot to talk about. Carey knows how to draw in his audience and tell a helluva story!
I received a review copy of LITTLE by Edward Carey from Riverhead Books via Copperfish Books.