Hey everyone! Welcome to Xpresso Reads’ blog tour stop for The Inevitable Victorian Thing! E.K. Johnston won my heart over last year with Exit, Pursued by a Bear and I’ve been a fan ever since! While I haven’t had the chance to read The Inevitable Victorian Thing yet, I am sure it will be amazing and I am sure I will be a FAN. Anyway! Today! We have the lovely E.K. Johnston over on the blog talking about her favorite victorian woman.
E.K. Johnston’s Favorite Victorian Woman
Okay, so my serious answer to this question is Ada Lovelace for a bunch of reasons that you can look up on tumblr.
But my actual answer is a little different.
The year is 1886. At Oxford, four students and one woman (who is a student in all but name, thanks, misogyny), stand on the brink of scientific greatness (or, like, horrible death, ymmv). The samples are ready. They have jumped right to human testing because, uh, reasons, I guess, and it is the brains of the operation who will be the first test subject. Her name is Helen Magnus. And she is one of the greatest characters who has ever existed.
I love Helen profoundly. We meet her in the modern era (she’s immortal, see above re: human testing), and she has managed to grow. She’s not amusingly out of touch or clinging to outdated ideals. She has lived in the world and watched it change, and she has changed with it, confronting her prejudices as she goes.
Helen messes up. Helen is arrogant and reckless. Helen drives too fast and kisses too many people and probably doesn’t eat enough leafy greens, and Helen does not care. She got over caring about what other people think of her when her fiancé turned into Jack the Ripper (long story), and she hasn’t looked back.
The Victorian era was pretty messed up. Class and race and religion and wealth were all used to separate people, to judge them, to punish them. Helen Magnus is a person who grew up in that system and had the wherewithal to make change happen. She didn’t stop when she got into Oxford. She wasn’t content with just her dreams being realized. She wanted a better world for everything, and she was ready and willing to fight for it.
She can do battle. She is a brilliant scientist. She loves so deeply it’s occasionally dangerous to bystanders. She’ll never be finished. And I love her.
About the Book
That Inevitable Victorian Thing by E.K. Johnston
Published by Dutton Books for Young Readers on October 3rd, 2017
Genres: Historical, Sci-Fi, YA
Source: Dutton Books for Young Readers
Buy on Amazon
Victoria-Margaret is the crown princess of the empire, a direct descendent of Victoria I, the queen who changed the course of history. The imperial tradition of genetically arranged matchmaking will soon guide Margaret into a politically advantageous marriage. But before she does her duty, she'll have one summer of freedom and privacy in a far corner of empire. Posing as a commoner in Toronto, she meets Helena Marcus, daughter of one of the empire's greatest placement geneticists, and August Callaghan, the heir to a powerful shipping firm currently besieged by American pirates. In a summer of high-society debutante balls, politically charged tea parties, and romantic country dances, Margaret, Helena, and August discover they share an extraordinary bond and maybe a one-in-a-million chance to have what they want and to change the world in the process.
Set in a near-future world where the British Empire never fell and the United States never rose, That Inevitable Victorian Thing is a surprising, romantic, and thought-provoking story of love, duty, and the small moments that can change people and the world.
About the Author
E. K. Johnston is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of several YA novels, including the L.A. Time Book Prize finalist The Story of Owen and Star Wars: Ahsoka. Her novel A Thousand Nights was shortlisted for The Governor General’s Award. The New York Times called The Story of Owen “a clever first step in the career of a novelist who, like her troubadour heroine, has many more songs to sing” and in its review of Exit, Pursued by a Bear, The Globe & Mail called Johnston “the Meryl Streep of YA,” with “limitless range.” E. K. Johnston lives in Stratford, Ontario. Follow her on Twitter at @ek_johnston.
Three (3) winners receive:
One (1) hardcover copy of That Inevitable Victorian Thing
NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. Enter between 12:00 AM Eastern Time on October 2, 2017 and 12:00 AM on October 23, 2017. Open to residents of the fifty United States and the District of Columbia who are 13 and older. Winners will be selected at random on or about October 25, 2017. Odds of winning depend on number of eligible entries received. Void where prohibited or restricted by law.
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Helen sounds like someone I’d want to have on my side always. Smart, loving, and willing to take chances for what she believes in are fantastic qualities. I might have to coax her into more leafy greens though.
I love how E.K. Johnston describe Helen Magnus it made me look her up and I might watch the show now.