Book Review: The Revenge of the Radioactive Lady by Elizabeth Stuckey-French

Filed in Gather Books Essential by on May 10, 2011 0 Comments

 

The Revenge of the Radioactive LadyThe Revenge of the Radioactive Lady by Elizabeth Stuckey-French
Book Description

This lively, intricately plotted, laugh-out-loud funny, and surprisingly touching family drama combines the wit of Carl Hiaasen with the southern charm of Jill McCorkle.

Seventy-seven-year-old Marylou Ahearn is going to kill Dr. Wilson Spriggs come hell or high water. In 1953, he gave her a radioactive cocktail without her consent as part of a secret government study that had horrible consequences.

Marylou has been plotting her revenge for fifty years. When she accidentally discovers his whereabouts in Florida, her plans finally snap into action. She high tails it to hot and humid Tallahassee, moves in down the block from where a now senile Spriggs lives with his daughter’s family, and begins the tricky work of insinuating herself into their lives. But she has no idea what a nest of yellow jackets she is stum­bling into.

Before the novel is through, someone will be kidnapped, an unlikely couple will get engaged, someone will nearly die from eating a pineapple upside-down cake laced with anti-freeze, and that’s not all . . .

Told from the varied perspectives of an incredible cast of endearing oddball characters and written with the flair of a native Floridian, this dark comedy does not disappoint.

Book Review
Marylou Ahearn is bent on revenge after locating the doctor who, in 1953, headed a radiation experiment that eventually took her eight-year-old daughter’s life. With plans to murder Dr. Wilson Spriggs, Marylou moves to Florida only to find out that Wilson now has Alzheimer’s disease and no recollection of her. Marylou’s plans of murder are foiled, for she cannot kill a man who has no idea what pain he’s caused her. Instead, she resolves to reap her revenge in the form of misery and tear Spriggs’ already dysfunctional family apart.

Revenge of The Radioactive Lady sounds interesting enough, but unfortunately there was seldom any plot progression in this story. The entire book is composed of character development and while it’s interesting to explore the Spriggs’ oddball family, I kept wondering when all of this potential energy would become kinetic, but it never did.

I really thought I’d like this book, but this supposed “dark-comedy” is just dark. There were a few amusing parts in the story, but they didn’t overwhelm the somber topics of autism, Alzheimer’s disease, child abuse, cancer, and pedophilia. I wouldn’t rush out to buy this book.

Book Rating: 3/5
Book Received From: Doubleday for Review
Reviewer: Brittany for Book Sake.
Author’s Website

About the Author ()

I'm a student, again, going for my Nursing degree. Mom of a teenage son, girlfriend to a wonderful boyfriend, adoptive mother to a wonderful lab/greyhound puppy (He's not really a puppy, but don't tell him that.)

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