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The Perils of Marie Louise
by DeLoris Stanton Forbes

Category: Fiction / General
232 pages; ISBN: 1594140839

Rating: 8/10  (Ratings explained)
Reviewer: Harriet Klausner


When Marie Louise was eight her uncle Rex was incarcerated for manslaughter having murdered her Uncle Royal. When she was thirteen, the family matriarch Grandmere gives her, as the only female of that generation, the Snodgrass Girdle, a chastity belt so she can serve as the sacred “keeper of the seed”. When Marie turned eighteen, someone strangles Aunt Victoria, but no one is convicted of the crime. At twenty, she watches Grandmere suffer an incapacitating stroke.

As an adult Marie becomes a movie star, while others in her family die including Cousins Edward and Charles. Marie Louise is set to become the family matriarch skipping past her mother and aunts. However, would she use murder to achieve her objective, a lesson she learned at eight years old or is this bad luck as the number of her rivals shrinks?

This is an innovative tale of fiction that readers, who enjoy a dark family saga, will appreciate though the story line at times moves too quickly through Marie’s life with chapters devoted to certain moments in the protagonist’s life, often the death of a relative. The plot provides a deep look at a wealthy family who seem like anachronisms in late twentieth century America. Marie Louise is an intriguing character while much of the secondary cast also has distinct personalities, but everyone else except Grandmere is told in relation to the lead protagonist. Not for everyone, fans of a macabre dark tale will enjoy this romp through the years.

Harriet Klausner


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