The Virgin Cure

The Virgin Cure

3.76 (12,963 ratings by Goodreads)
By (author) 

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Description

'I am Moth, a girl from the lowest part of Chrystie Street, born to a slum-house mystic and the man who broke her heart.' So begins THE VIRGIN CURE, a novel set in the tenements of lower Manhattan in 1871. As a young child, Moth's father smiled, tipped his hat and walked away from her forever. The summer she turned twelve, her mother sold her as a servant to a wealthy woman, with no intention of ever seeing her again.

These betrayals lead Moth to the wild, murky world of the Bowery, filled with house-thieves, pickpockets, beggars, sideshow freaks and prostitutes, where eventually she meets Miss Everett, the owner of a brothel simply known as "The Infant School". Miss Everett caters to gentlemen who pay dearly for companions, and the most desirable of them all are young virgins like Moth.

Through the friendship of Dr. Sadie, a female physician, Moth learns to question and observe the world around her, where her new friends are falling prey to the myth of the "virgin cure" - that deflowering a maid can heal the incurable and tainted. She knows the law will not protect her, that polite society ignores her, and still she dreams of answering to no one but herself. There's a high price for such independence, though, and no one knows that better than a girl from Chrystie Street...
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Product details

  • Paperback | 368 pages
  • 153 x 234mm
  • Orion (an Imprint of The Orion Publishing Group Ltd )
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • Digital original
  • 140914349X
  • 9781409143499
  • 1,374,757

Review quote

McKay's ability to make Moth's slum experience visceral is testament to her meticulous research and storytelling prowess * GLOBE & MAIL * McKay has created an engaging and wonderfully well-developed narrator, all the more impressive because even though she is among society's most powerless, her determination inspires more admiration than pity. Thought provoking and beautifully rendered, The Virgin Cure explores both the horrors people are capable of inflicting and the dignity that can accrue to those who oppose them * BOOKLIST *
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About Ami McKay

Ami McKay's debut novel, The Birth House, was a No.1 bestseller in Canada, winner of three CBA Libris Awards, nominated for the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award, and a book club favourite around the world. While writing her new novel, The Witches of New York, she discovered several women in her family tree who were accused and tried for witchcraft. Born and raised in Indiana, Ami now lives in Nova Scotia.

To find out more, visit www.amimckay.com

@sideshowami
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Rating details

12,963 ratings
3.76 out of 5 stars
5 20% (2,584)
4 44% (5,719)
3 29% (3,748)
2 6% (789)
1 1% (123)
Book ratings by Goodreads
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