In an electric-powered Victorian London, Dr. Eliza Jekyll is a crime scene investigator, hunting killers with inventive new technological gadgets. Now, a new killer is splattering London with blood, drugging beautiful women and slicing off their limbs. Catching "the Chopper" could make Eliza's career--or get her burned. Because Eliza has a dark secret. A seductive second self, set free by her father's forbidden magical elixir: wild, impulsive Lizzie Hyde.
When the Royal Society sends their enforcer, the mercurial Captain Lafayette, to prove she's a sorceress, Eliza must resist the elixir with all her power. But as the Chopper case draws her into London's luminous, magical underworld, Eliza will need all the help she can get. Even if it means getting close to Lafayette, who harbors an evil curse of his own.
Even if it means risking everything and setting vengeful Lizzie free . . .
I love how The Diabolical Miss Hyde is not just a retelling of the well-known story of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, but instead is the extension story of his daughter Dr. Eliza Jekyll and her dark side Miss Lizzie Hyde.
Now an orphaned woman, Dr. Eliza Jekyll takes after her father: the infamous Dr. Jekyll. Eliza is a crime scene investigator and a doctor who works at the insane asylum Bethlam. With two new murder scenes, Elisa must expose the anonymous murderer known as the ‘Chopper’ (who cuts the limbs off his victims) before he kills his next target.
Things start to get complicated when the Royal’s Captain Lafayette is oddly positioned to work alongside Dr. Eliza with her murder case. Unsure whether to trust him, both Elisa and Lizzie suspect he’s hiding something and could potentially become a danger to them both. But Lafayette is not the only one hiding deep secrets… With a single drop of elixir, there’s no knowing just what Elisa’s impulsive shadow façade Lizzie Hyde might do once she’s freed from her slumber.
I found it extremely intriguing that Viola Carr chose to alternate her writing from 1st person to 3rd person as she wrote from both Eliza and Lizzie’s perspective. She does an incredible job at keeping both their characters separate from one another. Eliza is the smart shortsighted girl with her opticals and resourceful gadgets, whilst Lizzie is the wild and adventurous shadow persona that is uncontrollable. Though Lizzie may be extremely strong willed and brave, she is still afraid that Eliza wishes for nothing more than to get rid of her. I also loved how throughout the novel, they consistently helped one another out, even without the other one’s acknowledgement at times.
This novel was fast past and unpredictable as it had you second-guessing just who this ‘mysterious’ murderer might be. Viola Carr also cleverly weaves other potential murderers artfully. The plot is well built with remarkable new characters that you can’t help but want to grasp just what was going on inside that head of theirs. I hope to one-day see this novel be produced into a film, as I believe it would work wonderfully.
***for an honest and unbiased review***
Viola also writes urban fantasy adventure and dark paranormal romance under a pseudonym known as Erica Hayes.