Book 28: Margaret The First by Danielle Dutton

Margaret the First tells the story of the real-life Margaret Cavendish, a 17th century noblewoman, feminist and science-fiction author whose opinions and eccentricities – like turning up to the London theatre topless – earned her the name ‘Mad Madge’.

She was a trailblazer in thought and deed, and deserves some modern recognition.

Danielle Dutton’s book is a fictionalised account of her life but also heavy with historical detail. As a result it’s sadly not a great read, stuck in an awkward middle ground between illuminating drama and informative biography.

The writing is fine at times, but clunky at others. Dutton has a maddening tendency to overcomplicate elements of the story that should be straightforward, making this much more difficult to follow than it should be.

It’s by no means  a bad book but one cannot help but feel Mad Madge deserves better.

Next: it’s back to the future with a terrorism tale.


Author: adamgartrell

Political journalist drowning in books

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