Review Snippet: Anatomy A Love Story by Dana Schwartz

About this Book (From Exclusive Books website)

Edinburgh, 1817. Hazel Sinnett is a lady who wants to be a surgeon more than she wants to marry.

Jack Currer is a resurrection man who’s just trying to survive in a city where it’s too easy to die.

When the two of them have a chance encounter outside the Edinburgh Anatomist’s Society, Hazel thinks nothing of it at first. But after she gets kicked out of renowned surgeon Dr. Beecham’s lectures for being the wrong gender, she realizes that her new acquaintance might be more helpful than she first thought. Because Hazel has made a deal with Dr. Beecham: if she can pass the medical examination on her own, the university will allow her to enroll. Without official lessons, though, Hazel will need more than just her books – she’ll need bodies to study, corpses to dissect.

Lucky that she’s made the acquaintance of someone who digs them up for a living, then.

But Jack has his own problems: strange men have been seen skulking around cemeteries, his friends are disappearing off the streets. Hazel and Jack work together to uncover the secrets buried not just in unmarked graves, but in the very heart of Edinburgh society.

A gothic tale full of mystery and romance about a willful female surgeon, a resurrection man who sells bodies for a living, and the buried secrets they must uncover together.


My thoughts

First things first – is this not one of the most gorgeous book covers?

A couple of years ago I visited Scotland and had the opportunity to spend some time exploring Edinburgh and the immediate surrounds.  During that visit, we did all the touristy things, visiting Edinburgh Castle, took a drive through the Highlands, and more.

But one outing that left a lasting impression on me, was the night we took a tour of The Real Mary King’s Close. This is a fascinating tour of underground Edinburgh, complete with period costumes and candlelight, depicting the 400+ year history of Edinburgh, and amongst other things – extreme poverty and classism, and The Plague.

“Anatomy” took me back to that experience within the first couple of pages already.  Part Historical Fiction, with a dash of light romance, Part Young Adult, I quickly got lost in the world of Hazel Sinnett.  Her determination to study surgery in a patriarchal society, something that was totally unheard of at that time,  leading to her relationship with a young ‘grave robber’/body scratcher – Jack Currer.  Jack is a ‘resurrection man’, trying his best to survive at the time of a mysterious plague outbreak.

Quirky, scary, intelligent, with a few surprising twists – especially towards the end.  I am really hoping for a sequel though, because I felt the ending didn’t live up to expectations – but also, to be honest, I don’t know what ending would have satisfied me completely?

And, my wish is for someone to say this to you one day:

“Somebody should tell you that you’re beautiful every time the sun comes up. Someone should tell you you’re beautiful on Wednesdays. And at tea time. Someone should tell you you’re beautiful on Christmas Day and Christmas Eve and the evening before Christmas Eve, and on Easter. He should tell you on Guy Fawkes Night and on New Year’s, and on the eighth of August, just because.”


My rating:  7/10


Thank you to Exclusive Books for this book, in exchange for an honest review.