The Pleasures of Men

The Pleasures of Men Kate Williams first novel The Pleasures of Men is a gothic thriller with a splash of brutal murder Spitalfields A murderer nicknamed The Man of Crows A heroine with a mysterious past and a viv

  • Title: The Pleasures of Men
  • Author: Kate Williams
  • ISBN: 9780241951392
  • Page: 347
  • Format: Paperback
  • Kate Williams first novel, The Pleasures of Men, is a gothic thriller with a splash of brutal murder.Spitalfields, 1840.A murderer nicknamed The Man of Crows.A heroine with a mysterious past and a vivid imagination.Catherine Sorgeiul lives with her Uncle in a rambling house in London s East End When a murderer strikes, ripping open the chests of young girls and stuffingKate Williams first novel, The Pleasures of Men, is a gothic thriller with a splash of brutal murder.Spitalfields, 1840.A murderer nicknamed The Man of Crows.A heroine with a mysterious past and a vivid imagination.Catherine Sorgeiul lives with her Uncle in a rambling house in London s East End When a murderer strikes, ripping open the chests of young girls and stuffing hair into their mouths to resemble a crow s beak, Catherine is fascinated, and devours news of his exploits.As the murders cause panic throughout the city, she comes to believe she can channel the voices of his victims and that they will lead her to The Man himself But she s already far closer than she realises and lurking behind the lies she s been told about her past are secrets deadly and devastating than anything her imagination can conjure.Dark and compelling, The Pleasures of Men marks Kate Williams as a stunning new voice in historical fiction.

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      Published :2018-09-01T15:25:59+00:00

    1 thought on “The Pleasures of Men”

    1. I love historical fiction and this was a fantastic read. A nail biter the who done it that kept me guessing until the end.

    2. Absolutely dreadful, I gave up after 50 pages. I did actually read the historical notes at the back, and strangely (or maybe not), they made for much better reading. Unfortunately, I think this is a case of an author with a background in historical research and factual writing, who is obviously passionate about Victoriana, turning her hand to novel writing, and overcooking it. Sorry Kate, didn't do it for me.

    3. In 19th-century London, Catherine Sorgeiul is living an isolated life in Spitalfields, where she is confined to her uncle's home. An insular and slightly disturbed young woman, she has a troubled history which always seems to be threatening to rise to the surface. When a serial killer, nicknamed 'the Man of Crows' by the press, starts to strike around Catherine's home, she becomes convinced she can get inside the heads of both murderer and victims, and that she is the only person who can solve t [...]

    4. Original review:Better review tomorrow -- too brain-dead tonight -- but overall this was very good. (Bonus: I see from the Reading Group thingee that the author is currently working on a second Victorian novel about a governess & the mysterious family she works for. SQUEE.) Update:Days after finishing this, I'm still somewhat stumped in the review department. The advance praise page has a blurb comparing this to Sarah Waters & Michael Faber, which isn't a bad analogy; certainly the sexua [...]

    5. I'm actually a bit mad at myself for sticking with this book which turned out to be a huge let down and a waste of my time. I kept thinking it would get better or the storyline would make sense but it never happened. Word of advice to those thinking about reading this: if you get about 50 pages in and you don't like it - don't keep reading. It doesn't get better.

    6. Goodness!This is wonderful, and not at all what I was expecting from a historian turned novelist.This is deliciously dark Victoriana.I was pulled straight away into 1840, into the dark, crowded, dirty streets of East London.The Man of Crows, a serial killer who has done terrible, terrible things to earn that soubriquet walks the streets and the city lives in fear.Catherine Sougeil lives with her uncle in Spitalfields and she is troubled. She remembers a happier time when she lived with her paren [...]

    7. The review blurb says Kate Williams is "hugely promotable,' and "has a fantastic media profile," all of which is undoubtedly true. BBC TV presenter, author, and reviewer, she's described as "a stunning new voice in historical fiction." The blurb also tells us that Williams took an MA in Creative Writing, and this shows its hand on almost every page of this novel; so over-written it's overwrought.The Pleasures of Men follows the overheated imagination of a frustrated Victorian girl, damaged in so [...]

    8. I don't know what to think of this book. It has a certain allure, something that kept me reading, but at the end I put it down and had difficulty pinning down anything I liked about it. There's an intense sexuality about it, and an interesting portrayal of a mentally fragile young girl and how people play upon her mind and manipulate her, and enjoy observing her. The atmosphere of the story is excellent, and the historical setting seems well researched and quite vivid, but I didn't feel much abo [...]

    9. This book was not a popular book over-all on GR, but I really enjoyed it. This book has a dark gothic flare to it. It is an interesting combo of literary and non-literary. Also I have weakness for books with queer characters. :D

    10. Perhaps part of my confusion with the plot ofThe pleasure of menis due to the fact that I read it during finals week.but I don't think so. Based on the general consensus of other reviewers on , I think Kate Williams intended to write a gothic Victorian mystery, but instead wrote a convoluted, overwrought tale which tried to do too much and succeeded at very little. Meet Catherine, a young woman with a tragic past (which slowly gets revealed during the first 1/2 of the book). She has come to live [...]

    11. The Pleasures of Men read like a badly televised version of Henry James The Turn of the Screw with a dash of Sarah Waters and Michael Cox added in.There isn't any new ground covered in this novel. I didn't learn anything about the human condition of why people are attracted to serial killers. Blaming yourself for a dead relative might make a good case for a ghost story but this girl was just a drama queen.I wasn't satisfied by any of the relationships established here.The story of a prickly girl [...]

    12. The Pleasures of Men by Kate Williams is, contrary to the title, a mystery set in 1840s England. Catherine Sorgeiul, an orphan, lives with her eccentric uncle on Princes Street, and is on the verge of being a spinster. Forced by her uncle to try to find a suitable match, yet limited to her dismal and eerie home in a lower-class part of London, she yearns to escape from the drudgery. When the Man of Crows begins to wage war on poor girls throughout the city, and leaves them dead in the position o [...]

    13. Someone is murdering women. The murderer however does take the time to nicely arrange the women by braiding their hair and stuffing the end of the braid in their mouth. Catherine Sorgeiul lives with her Uncle. She is supposed to be a proper lady and that means she does not have much of a life. With lots of time on her hands, Catherine soon finds herself drawn to the murders. Catherine starting writing about the murders. However, Catherine’s writing brings her into the killer’s sight. This bo [...]

    14. About five stories in one - the author clearly could not decide which one to tell and so told all of them. The thriller I was expecting failed to materialise and the ending was predictable and dull.

    15. Just a tad too confusing at the beginning, trying to piece together where Catherine had come from and what get family history was. Sometimes the slow drip feed of information adds to the story, but there was no tension here, just the frustration of not knowing.Some parts were fantastically atmospheric,all the fringe, noise, sights and smells, unfortunately most of it didn't grip me.Grace seemed like a complete waste of pages, and you have to wonder at a character not only unfortunate enough to l [...]

    16. Word soup. If anyone knows what this is all about, let me know. Actually, on second thoughts, don't bother.

    17. Usually when I give a book one star, there's a certain amount of hate involved. But this book didn't even inspire hate. 350 pages and the only time I came even remotely close to caring about a character is for about twelve pages when Constantine was speaking the most obvious truths and pointing out several flaws in the book. This happened around page 100 and I was shocked that there was almost something resembling a personality. But that quickly passed.This was just a convoluted mess that fell l [...]

    18. Catherine Surgeiul non è la tipica eroina vittoriana: impacciata e distratta, spesso si perde nei meandri della propria immaginazione. E' poco curata nell'aspetto e, in compagnia di altre persone, si sente costantemente a disagio. Catherine ha un segreto che verrà svelato poco a poco: la ragione per cui ha visto la propria famiglia e la propria vita dissolversi per far posto ad un grandissimo ed opprimente senso di colpa. Per anni le è stato ripetuto che è stata lei la causa del male che ha [...]

    19. Huge disappointment and I must say this book has sworn me off any future offerings by author Williams as I found the entire book utterly atrocious. Takes place in Victorian England and the central character is Catherine, an orphan who is now in her early twenties and lives under the good graces of her uncle in London. There are hints of some sort of sordid past, coupled with mental health issues, which have forced Catherine into the living arrangement she now finds herself. Her uncle is some sor [...]

    20. Catherine Sorgeiul lives in Spitalfields with her uncle. Previously, she had lived in Richmond with her parents and brother, but there are hints of some tragedy which means Catherine has lost her family. The full story only becomes clear as the book unfolds, but it is obvious that Catherine is a very tragic and unhappy young girl. The house she lives in with her uncle is a "cabinet of curiosities", set in a poor area where few respectable people visit. Those that do, Catherine is wary of. Her un [...]

    21. This should have been a winner with me, a pre-Peeler Victorian murder mystery with an undercurrent of mental illness, this one was largely a miss for me. There were moments that worked, but overall it just wasn't me.Catherine Sorgeiul lives in Spitalfields with her Uncle. She is getting older and there is a possiblilty that she won't find a husband. Her uncle is eccentric and she herself is prone to what were referred to as fits of imagining. She has spent some time in institutions after her mot [...]

    22. I could not get into this. It was disjointed, skipping around between POVs (I think? No, I'm pretty sure. Unless those other POVs were dreams) So, yeah. Confusing. The villain(s) were telegraphed (badly) from the beginning, but some others (Mr. Janisser the younger) didn't act appropriately (ETA: by which I mean that his character wasn't consistent - his behaviour jumped around a lot), and there were no reasons given. I don't know - I couldn't get into it - the main character (Catherine?) didn't [...]

    23. A cleverly crafted, darkly twisted novel that examines the psyche of Catherine, our troubled, unstable narrator. The story follows Catherine's increasing obsession with a string of brutal murders committed by the nicknamed "The Man of Crows". Throughout, she creates stories in order to better understand The Man of Crows and to unravel the mystery as to why the murders are occurring.But, Catherine is, of course, an unreliable narrator

    24. Set in 1840’s London, ‘The Pleasures of Men’ tells the tale of orphaned nineteen year old Catherine Sorgeiul after she is taken in by her uncle. Uncle lives in genteel poverty amidst books and anthropological artifacts. Encouraged to not think about the tragedies of her past that led her to be institutionalized for a time, but given nothing to do that interests her, she becomes obsessed with the Man of Crows, a serial killer who is targeting young women. To try and get a handle on how he t [...]

    25. I've got mixed feelings on this one, I won't deny that. On one hand it was a story with a lot of potential - serial killer in Dicken's London, preying on women and disposing them in a most gruesome manner, all murders seemingly coming closer and closer to one particular, by all accounts, troubled young woman. It had all the hallmarks of a darn good read. And what a cover!! Sucked me right into the vortex had me with the bloody knife being gently held by a fragile ivory hand.Sucker!Sadly, it was [...]

    26. Book Title: "The Pleasures of Men”Author: Kate WilliamsPublished By: Hyperion/VoiceAge Recommended: 18+ Reviewed By: Kitty BullardRaven Rating: 5Review: In the rousing age of Victorian England comes a terrifying story of mystery and murder. This novel is on par with some of the darkest tales of Jack the Ripper, I found myself cringing from the detailed horrific scenes of young girls murdered by a killer dubbed the ‘Man of Crows.’ The heroine is a young girl herself, named Catherine Sorgeiu [...]

    27. Billing this book as a Victorian mystery might be a misnomer. Maybe more of a thriller? But I found it to be confusing and the storyline convoluted, with the narrator telling the stories of the murdered women through their perspective. The recurring drama of the narrator's background, combined with the lack of development of the other characters, made it difficult for me to stay engaged.

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