We’re feeling bittersweet about these books because although A Cold Legacy is FINALLY here, it means that The Madman’s Daughter trilogy is over. It’s not everyday that YA inspired by Frankenstein takes hold of your heart. But to soothe the ache, we’ve created a refresher to relive the series once more!
**Spoiler ahead, proceed with caution!**
A quick summary of The Madman’s Daughter series
In The Madman’s Daughter, Juliet Moreau is working as a maid in London when she discovers that her banished father is alive and working on a remote island off the coast of Australia. She travels there with Montgomery James and Balthazar, picking up a shipwreck survivor, Edward Prince, along the way. On the island, the family reunion is less that picture-perfect when Juliet discovers her father has continued his unethical experimentation on animals—and her horror minges with curiosity when she realizes he’s done the impossible and created beasts who can walk and talk like humans. One of these beasts is murdering the islanders, and Juliet, Edward, and Montgomery decide they must escape the island. Before they do, Juliet learns that she was her father’s first experiment—a human girl, but with a deer heart. Deciding that her father is insane and must be stopped, she enlists the help of Jaguar to kill him in a fire where she also learns the terrible truth about Edward—he is the murderous beast, a sort of split personality creation.
Montgomery disables Edward/The Beast, and they escape to the dock. As the laboratory burns, Juliet, Montgomery, and Balthazar prepare to flee in a raft. But at the last minute, Montgomery changes his mind. He pushes Juliet out to sea alone, claiming he cannot abandon creatures he helped create.
Then, in Her Dark Curiosity: Several months after Juliet escaped the island, she is now back in London and under the guardianship of Professor von Stein, a friend of her family’s, again living a life of luxury with her friend Lucy. But Juliet has a secret—each night she sneaks out to an attic apartment where she works on a serum to heal herself of an illness caused by her father’s experimentation. One night, she discovers clues that indicate a notorious serial killer stalking London is actually Edward Prince. She’s proven right when she meets one of Lucy’s suitors—who is, in fact, Edward. He’s come to London also seeking a cure, and Montgomery has followed him, in an attempt to hunt and kill him. When they learn that Lucy’s father, Mr. Radcliffe, is in league with a cabal called the King’s Club who are attempting to recreate her father’s work, they must put their differences aside to stop the King’s Club. Juliet ends up using Moreau’s own work against them. Though she defeats them, Montgomery is disturbed by how readily she embraces her father’s grisly work.
Juliet, Montgomery, Lucy, Balthazar, and Edward must flee London. The professor’s niece, Elizabeth von Stein, agrees to shelter them in her remote manor in northern Scotland. Just as they depart, they learn a horrifying truth—Edward, knowing there is no cure for the Beast, has poisoned himself. To prevent him from dying, Juliet knows she must learn more about Elizabeth von Stein’s family secrets—starting with the fact that they changed their name from Frankenstein.
The Madman’s Daughter series character guide
Juliet Moreau: When Juliet’s father, famed British surgeon Henri Moreau, is banished for unethical experimentation on animals, Juliet is left destitute—until she decides to travel to her father’s remote island and learn the truth for herself.
Montgomery James: A childhood servant and friend of Juliet’s, Montgomery became Dr. Moreau’s laboratory assistant on the island, tending to Moreau’s beastly creations.
Edward Prince/The Beast: When a young shipwreck survivor ends up on Moreau’s island, Juliet is entranced by his mysterious circumstances until she discovers he is actually her father’s most dangerous experiment—a creature who changes from boy to monster uncontrollably.
Lucy Radcliffe: Juliet’s best friend comes from a wealthy London family; her father (Mr. Radcliffe) is one of Dr. Moreau’s conspirators and is desperate to get his hands on the Moreau science.
Balthazar: One of Moreau’s more loveable creations, a half-bear half-dog man
Elizabeth von Stein: A distant relation of Juliet’s who lives in a remote manor in northern Scotland.
Jaguar/Ajax: A friend of Montgomery’s, Jaguar is the only one of Moreau’s creations who has rejected his humanity and desires to return to his animal state.
Top quotes from The Madman’s Daughter
“Dead flesh and sharpened scalpels didn’t bother me. I was my father’s daughter, after all. My nightmares were made of darker things.”
“I rested my forehead against the wall and closed my eyes. It wasn’t just my curiosity, or my fascination with anatomy, or how I could unhesitatingly chop a rabbit’s head off with an ax when a roomful of boys couldn’t. Those things were all symptoms of the same sickness – a kind of madness inherited from my father. It was a dangerous pull in my gut drawing me toward the dark possibilities of science, toward the thin line between life and death, toward the animal impulses hidden behind a corset and a smile.”
“Montgomery left slowly, as if he had to pry himself away before he something improper. A growing part of me wished he’d stayed.”
Top quotes from Her Dark Curiosity
“The Beast smiled grimly, though there was no glee in it, as though for once he understood how heartbreaking this was for me. ‘No serum can change who you are. Nor should you change. Genius or madness-it all depends on who’s telling the story.’ His hand stopped tapping, and that humanity flickered again in his eye. ‘You’re perfect as you are, my love.”
“Hate the part of him that gave in to madness. But don’t hate your father, not all of him. There was a time when he loved you very much, and that’s what you should remember.”
“Call it sentimentality. Call it curiosity.
Just don’t call it madness.”
What’s coming up in A Cold Legacy
After killing the men who tried to steal her father’s research, Juliet—along with Montgomery, Lucy, Balthazar, and a deathly ill Edward—has escaped to a remote estate on the Scottish moors. Owned by the enigmatic Elizabeth von Stein, the mansion is full of mysteries and unexplained oddities: dead bodies in the basement, secret passages, and fortune-tellers who seem to know Juliet’s secrets. Though it appears to be a safe haven, Juliet fears new dangers may be present within the manor’s own walls.
Then she uncovers the truth about the manor’s long history of scientific experimentation—and her own intended role in it—forcing her to determine where the line falls between right and wrong, life and death, magic and science, and promises and secrets. And she must decide if she’ll follow her father’s dark footsteps or her mother’s tragic ones, or whether she’ll make her own.
With inspiration from Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, this breathless conclusion to the Madman’s Daughter trilogy is about the things we’ll sacrifice to save those we love—even our own humanity.