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A Deadly Affection

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3.90  ·  Rating Details  ·  220 Ratings  ·  46 Reviews
Winner of ForeWord Reviews' Book of the Year Award

New York City, 1907.
At the dawn of the twentieth century, Americans believe that science, especially the medical sciences, will soon conquer all of mankind's ills. For a brief time medical schools open their doors to women, allowing them to join the scientific crusade. Genevieve Summerford is one woman who answers the call
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Paperback, 454 pages
Published January 13th 2012 by Copper Bottom Press (first published January 1st 2012)
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  • A Deadly Affection by Cuyler Overholt
    A Deadly Affection
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    Community Reviews

    (showing 1-30 of 1,593)
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    Linda O'Donnell F.
    I received a copy of A Deadly Affection through NetGalley for an honest review. My thanks to Sourcebooks Landmark and to Cuyler Overholt for the opportunity.

    "Higher education enlarged the brain and stunted the bodies of female students."

    This certainly was the general thinking of the masses in January of 1907. Breaking through these walls of faulty thinking, especially dominated by males, was a daunting task by the females of the day. It took a strong intellect, a will of iron, and a feisty dispo
    ...more
    Annette Hallowell
    Jan 26, 2013 Annette Hallowell rated it it was amazing
    A great read for anyone who likes historical mysteries. The city and the people come to life in the pages of the book. I was hooked early on and felt compelled to continue reading as the story developed. I was thoroughly invested in the characters and the outcome of the story. The conflict between the classes during the early 1900's along with the twist of a woman in medicine (psychology) was a fascinating new look at the time period. I am looking forward to a series as I was left wanting more. ...more
    Barb
    Rarely do I read books that I enjoy as much as I enjoyed this one. Dr. Genevieve Summerford is a doctor of scientific psychotherapy. She has just begun a new program where she will be working with women who are suffering physical maladies with no known cause, all of whom have suffered traumatic emotional losses. Genna has made it her goal to assist them in becoming functional and maybe even happy again. Her sponsor Professor Dr. Bogard believes her program presents an exciting new opportunity, w ...more
    Jaime Feinman
    Sep 09, 2012 Jaime Feinman rated it really liked it
    I love historical fiction and this author really did an amazing job of bringing 1900's NYC to life. For those who know the city well, it feels like a precious experience for those places we pass by and take for granted every day.
    Angie
    Jul 31, 2016 Angie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
    Shelves: mystery, arc, netgalley
    I enjoyed this turn-of-the-century mystery novel featuring a spunky female Doctor as our heroine. At this point in history, this was rare and females weren't afforded the same respect and privileges as male doctors.

    Dr Genevieve Summerford specializes in "psychotherapy" or what will later be the mental health field. She herself lived through a traumatic family event as a child, and feels she might help other women who have endured tragedy and emotional loss in their own families. She begins rudi
    ...more
    Dacie
    Feb 17, 2012 Dacie rated it it was amazing
    I really loved it! NYC 1900s, medicine, women's rights, mystery, humor, a good read with lots to learn about that era.
    Maureen
    Oct 15, 2013 Maureen rated it really liked it
    If you read a lot, sometimes the end of a book just isn't that exciting. The odds, quite frankly, are stacked against it, aren't they? It can be a little hard to get wrapped up in a climax - more often it seems to me that the pleasure is in the journey, the characters, the turn of phrase, etc. A book can only end so many differemt ways, right? Well, don't get me wrong - I am not suggesting that the ending of this novel was some sort of shocking surprise, but it was really, really pleasant. The v ...more
    Donna
    Jun 08, 2013 Donna rated it it was ok
    I found this novel just OK. In all fairness, I was reading it at a time when I wasn't really focused on my reading, and perhaps at a different time I would have liked it more. Form the synopsis I would have predicted that I'd enjoy the book, but the heroine wasn't quite believable and I wasn't at all drawn into the story by the time I was half-way through. I didn't finish the novel in time for a scheduled book club discussion, and felt no compulsion to complete it when it was no longer "required ...more
    Estott
    Feb 15, 2014 Estott rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
    Jessica C.
    Apr 07, 2016 Jessica C. rated it it was amazing
    Read an ARC of the soon to be republished by Sourcebooks. So good. Laurie R King good.
    Ann
    May 17, 2012 Ann rated it really liked it
    Just learned a couple weeks ago that fellow UVA Law School classmate, Cuyler, had written a novel. I wasted no time in buying a copy of the book and reading it. What a treat! The novel is well-written with great detail evoking New York just after the turn of the 20th century. The novel is told in the first person by Dr. Genevieve Summerford. It is a murder mystery with more turns than the twistiest roller coaster and includes many very well-drawn, complex and interesting characters, some of whom ...more
    Vishaka Rajan
    Aug 16, 2016 Vishaka Rajan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
    This novel was given to me by NetGalley as an advanced copy in exchange for an honest review.

    YAYYY Historical Fiction!!!!! Most of the time, when I choose to read a historical fiction novel, it is something sad that illuminates the trials and struggles of a certain race during a difficult period of history. I am happy to say that this story, while outlining the struggles of women and the acceptance of mental disorders, is not extremely sad in its portrayal of the 1900s. So before I give more awa
    ...more
    Faith
    Aug 15, 2016 Faith rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
    Shelves: mystery
    A dark and romantic historical mystery brimming with loss and forgiveness that brings to mind Anne Perry and Deanna Raybourn. The setting is fresh and alive, an engaging portrayal of 1907 New York. Dr. Summerford is trying to succeed as a woman in a crowded medical profession, difficult enough, while dealing with a past full of the sadness she tries to cure in others.

    Her honourable father wants her to use her talents properly, instead of wasting them on untested mental theories. She has irritati
    ...more
    Alexandra H
    Jul 15, 2012 Alexandra H rated it it was amazing
    What a riveting piece of literature--This novel is one of the best I have read in a very long time. As an English major, I could truly appreciate the spellbinding prose and vivid imagery that pulled me into the story almost instantly. I must admit that I do not read mysteries often, but Ms. Overholt has made me reconsider my genre preferences. Each time I sat down to read, I couldn't bear to put it down! I am recommending it to all of my friends.
    Shelly
    Good story, nicely done

    Very good writing, interesting story, nicely done historical points. My only criticism is that it was a little bit too long for me. Although I kept trying to figure out what parts could be cut out to shorten it I came up empty so my guess is the author did too! I will look for more from Overholt in the future.
    JoHannah Reardon
    Aug 22, 2013 JoHannah Reardon rated it really liked it
    The author did a great job weaving historical detail into her story. She's very descriptive and had a compelling tale. My only problem was that I thought the main character jumped to some silly conclusions at times. But these were minor and I liked the story enough that I will look for others by this author.
    Cathy
    Jun 21, 2012 Cathy rated it it was ok
    Based on the reviews, I thought I would love this book, however not the case. I found I could not get behind main character at all. There were one or two good plot twists but in the end quite disapointed
    Bonnie
    Feb 18, 2012 Bonnie marked it as to-read
    Its a historical? One point. A mystery? Another. Not only that, has a female character wanting to become a psychiatrist. Awesome! Sounds like a must-read!
    Jamiedwan
    Mar 27, 2012 Jamiedwan rated it liked it
    I thought it was good. Although it did hold my interest and I was able to move through it quickly.
    Bart
    Jul 13, 2012 Bart rated it it was amazing
    A good read.
    Susan
    May 31, 2013 Susan rated it really liked it
    Shelves: mystery, fiction
    Genevieve was a turn of the century woman in New York City at it's heyday. Genna had conquered all odds and had become a doctor--and her field of speciality was a psychotherapy. Her first volunteer job was to help some women referred to her by a minister as having problems they needed to deal with. Right off, Genna hits it off with one of her patients, Eliza. Eliza had given up a child after birth when she was fifteen. She wanted to just see the child. Genna told her to speak to her family docto ...more
    Wanda
    Jun 10, 2013 Wanda rated it it was amazing
    Wow, what a wonderful read! This is one of the most riveting books I've read in the past year, never having a dull or slow moment. I loved the author's style and was genuinely entertained by her writing.

    The story takes place in 1907-New York City. Dr Genevieve Summerford is a brilliant, well drawn character. A Psychotherapist, she is fascinated with this new emerging field, treating mental and nervous disorders. Genna was told that females were too sentimental to become competent physicians and
    ...more
    Barbara
    Nov 25, 2014 Barbara rated it it was amazing
    I really enjoyed reading this story, surprising to me because I just happened on it. Since I have a medical background this early century story about a woman interested in the field of psychology was intriguing. I wasn't disappointed in the details, they were well researched. The story was fascinating to involve this unmarried woman physician in a mystery. Loved it! A little speculation of love thrown in and her relationship with her parents completed the picture.
    Yvonne
    Apr 11, 2014 Yvonne rated it really liked it
    I liked it. It was long, over 1000 pgs on my nook. The story was good and kept me interested. She's trying to prove her patient didn't commit murder. She reunites with a forbidden love from her past. Very PG rated compared to what I usually read but I enjoyed it very much.
    Lynda
    Sep 14, 2013 Lynda rated it it was amazing
    I truly enjoyed A Deadly Affection! Dr Summerford is a psychiatrist in New York City in the early 1900's. She receives critism from many people including her father who is a physician himself. Women during this time were seen as property of their husbands. "Society" expects her to give up this silliness and get married. Dr Summerford is not interested in this, she is more concerned by helping people including the poor. She becomes involved in a murder case that involves one of her patients. Not ...more
    Pat
    Sep 02, 2014 Pat rated it it was amazing
    LOVED it! A top notch mystery combined with strong characterizations and add to that psychological and medical issues - what is not to love! I like it so much, I added it to our AFAN Morning Book Club list!
    Jennifer
    Apr 14, 2015 Jennifer rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
    Entertaining

    This was a good spring break read. Good mystery with interesting characters. Kept me guessing until the end. The end
    Kelly
    May 13, 2014 Kelly rated it liked it
    I really wanted to give this book 4 stars but it started off so slow. The first hundred pages were grueling and the main character's thoughts tended to ramble. It really picked up towards the middle and end, which made it a worthwhile read for me. If I could, I would give it 3.5 stars.
    Susan Ryan
    I loved this book and couldn't put it down. The topic was refreshingly original.
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    After graduating from the University of Virginia School of Law, Cuyler Overholt practiced as a litigation associate for four years before leaving the law to start up a freelance writing business. Over the next decade she transformed technical jargon into entertaining prose for a New York-based public relations firm. She finally found her true calling when she started scribbling a novel during her ...more
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