April 11, 2023

The Second Death of Edie and Violet Bond: Author Guest Post

The Second Death of Edie and Violet Bond
Author: Amanda Glaze
Genre: YA Historical/Fantasy
Release Date: October 4, 2022
Publisher: Union Square & Co.


Sacramento, 1885  

Edie and Violet Bond know the truth about death. The seventeen-year-old twins are powerful mediums, just like their mother—Violet can open the veil between life and death, and Edie can cross into the spirit world. But their abilities couldn’t save them when their mother died and their father threatened to commit them to a notorious asylum.   
Now runaways, Edie and Violet are part of a traveling Spiritualist show, a tight-knit group of young women who demonstrate their real talents under the guise of communing with spirits. Each night, actresses, poets, musicians, and orators all make contact with spirits who happen to have something to say. . . notions that young ladies could never openly express. But when Violet’s act goes terribly wrong one night, Edie learns that the dark spirit responsible for their mother’s death has crossed into the land of the living. As they investigate the identity of her mysterious final client, they realize that someone is hunting mediums…and they may be next.Only by trusting in one another can the twins uncover a killer who will stop at nothing to cheat death.

Which Books Should You Read Based on Your Favorite Period Drama?

When I was researching my debut historical fiction novel The Second Death of Edie and Violet Bond, about a pair of runaway spirit medium twins during the height of the Spiritualist movement in late nineteenth century America, I did a ton of primary research (especially since the twins in my book were inspired by real teenage mediums). But something I also liked to do was chill out with some snacks and binge one of my favorite period dramas, immersing myself in the sounds of horse-drawn carriages, the yellow glow of gaslights, and glorious gowns I loved to look at, but would never want to actually wear since I wouldn’t last ten minutes in a corset.

For me, historical fiction—in all its forms—provides that perfect mix of escape and reflection. It draws me into a world that is at least a little different from my own, and in doing so, it also holds a mirror up to a past that has influenced my own present in countless ways.

So, if you’re anything like me and enjoy a good historical drama binge, here some recommendations for YA books that will scratch that same itch.


Lady Sybil Branson | Soap Opera Wiki | Fandom

Credit: ITV 

If you enjoyed the rebellion, feminism, and political bent of Sybil Crawley’s storyline in Season One (remember the BLOOMERS??) you’ll love seventeen-year old Victoria Darling in Sharon Biggs Waller’s A Mad Wicked Folly. Set a handful of years before the events of Downton Abbey, Victoria (Vicky) Darling also chafes against the expectations of her aristocratic family. Born into a society where women are expected to limit their ambitions to being wives and mothers, Vicky has dreams to become an artist. When she becomes involved in the radical British suffragette movement and falls for a working-class boy who may be her muse, she has to figure out just how much she’s willing to sacrifice to pursue her dreams.


Separating Fact From Fiction in 'The Gilded Age' | Vanity Fair


HBO’s The Gilded Age shines a light on a world at the brink of the modern age (and gives us some pretty incredible glitz to enjoy, too). But there’s a reason Mark Twain dubbed late 19th century America the gilded age: it may glitter on the surface, but underneath, the corruption runs rampant.
There is no one better to let you in on what was really going on in late nineteenth century America than seventeen-year-old Jo Kuan, the witty, resourceful, hat-mad protagonist of Stacey Lee’s bestselling novel The Downstairs Girl. A lady’s maid by day and the anonymous author of a newspaper advice column "Dear Miss Sweetie” by night, Jo faces backlash when she uses the power of her wildly successful column to challenge fixed ideas about race and gender. Full of mystery, long-buried secrets, a charming romance, and absolutely to-die-for hats, this insightful novel will satisfy all of your cravings for a story set in America’s side of the Victorian era. 
And if you love the New York City setting of The Gilded Age, but wish there was a little more mystery, a touch more feminism, and a few more young, brash, infuriatingly handsome reporters, check out These Shallow Graves by Jennifer Donnelly about rich, beautiful Jo Montfort whose secret dream of becoming a trailblazing reporter like Nellie Bly is put into action when her father’s mysterious death churns up dirty secrets from the past that refuse to stay buried.


To play Anne in 'The Greatest Showman,' Zendaya did nearly three months of trapeze training prior to shooting.

Credit: Niko Tavernise

It’s a well-known fact that dreamers love the circus, and if you’ve always harbored a secret desire to run off to one, do yourself a favor and pick up Lisa Fielder’s stunning, multigeneration novel, We Walked The Sky about seventeen-year-old Victoria, who flees an unstable home to join the lion tamers, roustabouts, and trapeze artists in the VanDrexel Family Circus, and her granddaughter, Callie, who leaves the circus fifty years later and finds a box full of notes that belonged to Victoria when she was Callie’s age.

The Weight of Feathers by Anne-Marie McLemore is another must read for any circus lovers out there. For twenty years, the Palomas and the Corbeaus have been rivals and enemies, locked in an escalating feud for over a generation. Both families make their living as traveling performers in competing shows—the Palomas swimming in mermaid exhibitions, the Corbeaus, tightrope walkers performing in the tallest of trees. But when disaster strikes the small town where both families are performing, it's a Corbeau boy who saves Lace Paloma, the newest member of her family’s show.



Credit: ABC1 Australia.

If you’re still in mourning for the cancellation of the delight that was the Australian murder mystery show starring Phryne Fisher, an impeccably dressed, pearl-handled pistol carrying female sleuth who solves crimes in 1920s Melbourne with (or sometimes in spite of) the grumpy police detective who can’t help but adore her, then pick up a copy of Iron Cast by Destiny Soria, which has enough jazz, witty banter, and mystery to satisfy even Phryne’s taste.

Set in an alternate version of 1919 America in which those with “afflicted” blood have the ability to create illusions through art, friends Ada (an intrepid daughter of immigrants) and Corinne Wells (a spunky, devil-may-care heiress) weave their magic nightly at the speakeasy-like Cast Iron nightclub in Boston. But when they get mixed up in a job gone wrong orchestrated by the notorious gangster who owns the club, they must save each other as they unravel a sinister mystery, facing betrayal at every turn.


Can’t get enough of the decadence and drama that is Versailles? Well, what about an alternate history in which seventeen-year-old alchemist Mirabelle Monvoisin unwittingly helps her mother poison the Sun King himself? In Addie Thorely’s An Affair of Poisons, Mira soon discovers that her mother’s Shadow Society are not the heroes they claimed to be, but murderers. Possible redemption comes for Mira, however, when she crosses paths with Royal bastard Josse de Bourbon who, after the assassination of King Louis XIV, secreted his injured sisters—and a petulant dauphin—away to safety via sewers underneath the city. Josee and Mira are on opposite sides of a war for control of Paris, but can they trust each other enough to inspire a rebellion?


RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK, Karen Allen, 1981

Credit: Paramount

The OG Indiana Jones movies were set in the mid 1930s, and if you ever wished the women in them had a little more to do with hunting treasure and solving clues, you’re in luck, because Jenn Bennet’s Lady Rogue is for you.

When Theodora’s treasure-hunting father goes missing while tracking down a legendary and magical ring that once belonged to Vlad the Impaler (more widely known as Dracula) she reunites with her father’s nineteen-year-old protégé—and once-upon-a-time love of Theodora’s life—Huck Gallagher. Armed with her father’s travel journal, they follow his trail into Romania, journeying through Gothic villages and dark castles in the misty Carpathian Mountains. But then they discover that a secretive and dangerous occult society with a powerful link to Vlad the Impaler himself is also searching for the ring, and that they will go to any lengths—including murder—to possess it.


Credit: 20TH CENTURY FOX  

Still can’t get the song Once Upon A December out of your head from the beloved 1997 animated film Anastasia? Well, despair no more because Nadine Brandes’s Romanov will fill that void. A magical twist on an impeccably researched version of Imperial Russia, the story follows Anastasia “Nastya” Romanov who was given the mission of smuggling an ancient spell — entrusted to her by skilled magician Rasputin himself — in her suitcase on her way to exile in Sibera with her family. But the leader of the Bolshevik army is after them, and Nastya must decide if she can trust the handsome soldier Zash…who doesn’t act like the average Bolshevik at all.