Saturday, August 25, 2012

Reese, James. The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll & Mademoiselle Odile.

Reese, James.     The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll & Mademoiselle Odile. Macmillan/ Roaring Brook Press  357p  $17.99      978-1-59643-684-8    
ms/hs       Good        Fantasy

Odile comes from a long line of witches. When her parents are killed she and her brother are basically thrown out into the street during the Prussian war in Paris, France.  It is in this setting that Odile tries out a few spells to save her brother, who has fallen very ill and may die if she does not find a special spell to restore his health.  The spell works, but with dire results for her brother, who is now almost a monster but still alive and healthy.  However, she is very much afraid that the spell may break at any moment and cause her brother’s death.

For Dr. Jekyll, who has given Odile and Greluchon a home, this is a stroke of luck, as he begins his journey into discovering his other side, Mr. Hyde.  With the left-over serum, or "salts" as Odile calls them, Dr. Jekyll experiments on himself, but the salts only work temporarily on him, whereas they seem to be permanent for Greluchon!

Can Odile save her brother and Dr. Jekyll before they both become monsters and die, or must she allow Dr. Jekyll access to her salts for his own experimentation in shape shifting?

This story is loosely based on the original classic by Robert Louis Stevenson.  The historical facts slowed the story down quite a bit, making it hard to follow the story of Odile and her brother.  The witchcraft story line is lost in all the historical background.       

Witchcraft, Fantasy, Spells-Fiction       --Magna Diaz

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