Book seven: The Poison Principle by Gail Bell
This book is in fact a non-fiction memoir of Gail Bell (I suspect this is a pen name due to the content included about her family and its sensitive nature).
Gail Bell is a chemist who is investigating stories about her grandfather and how it was believed that he poisoned two of his sons. Her grandfather was an apothecary and healer in the early 1900s.
Whilst this is centred around her family history and the discoveries she has along the way, it is interspersed with poignent literary references, facts on drugs, plants that harm and heal, history and historical references of poisons and people who have used poisons, as well as the law throughout the ages.
I thoroughly enjoyed this book with its dark humour, frank and open discussions on the human psyche, as well as her own beliefs about poisons and poisoning. The narrative is essentially a big stream of consciousness, so much so that it would appear that you’re drifting along without direction, though this direction is in fact very subtle.
Each story told is intended to offer learning material, to present us with a theory for possible outcomes, to encourage us to think and hypothesise. Each story is just, in part, a piece of her own research and self discovery.
Whether you enjoy non-fiction or fiction, I’d definitely recommend this book!
Book eight: Witch and Wizard by James Patterson.