Woman 99: A Novel (Hardcover)
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Charlotte gets into the asylum where her sister has been imprisoned by their wealthy parents. After meeting several inmates, she realizes that many aren’t insane, just inconvenient. This is a captivating story of mental illness treatment for women in the late 1800s and the power of sisterly love.— Kathy
"Woman 99 is a gorgeous ode to the power of female courage."—Kate Quinn, New York Times bestselling author of The Alice Network
A vivid historical thriller about a young woman whose quest to free her sister from an infamous insane asylum risks her sanity, her safety, and her life.
When Charlotte Smith's wealthy parents commit her beloved sister Phoebe to the infamous Goldengrove Asylum, Charlotte knows there's more to the story than madness. She commits herself to the insane asylum, surrendering her real identity as a privileged young lady of San Francisco society to become a nameless inmate, Woman 99.
The longer she stays, the more she realizes that many of the women of Goldengrove Asylum aren't insane, merely inconvenient—and her search for the truth threatens to dig up secrets that some very powerful people would do anything to keep.
Inspired by the investigative journalism of Nellie Bly, and other true accounts of 19th century insane asylums.
Rich in detail, deception, and revelation, Woman 99 is historical fiction that honors the fierce women of the past, born into a world that denied them power but underestimated their strength.
Raised in the Midwest, Greer Macallister is a novelist, poet, short story writer, and playwright who earned her MFA in Creative Writing from American University. Her debut novel The Magician’s Lie was a USA Today bestseller, an Indie Next pick, and a Target Book Club selection. It has been optioned for film by Jessica Chastain's Freckle Films. Her novel Girl In Disguise, also an Indie Next pick, received a starred review from Publishers Weekly, which called it “a well-told, superb story.” She lives with her family in Washington, DC.
"Woman 99 is a gorgeous ode to the power of female courage. A resourceful Gilded Age heiress feigns madness and inveigles herself into an insane asylum, determined at all costs to rescue her fragile, unjustly committed sister, only to realize the horrors of the madhouse may keep them both prisoner forever. But when alliances are forged among the asylum women, many of whom are jailed because they are inconvenient rather than insane, all things become possible--even escape. Greer Macallister pens a nail-biter that makes you want to stand up and cheer." — Kate Quinn, New York Times bestselling author of The Alice Network
"A gripping story that exposes the Gilded Age’s tarnished veneer, when women who didn’t acquiesce to the standards of the day were locked away. Powerful and electrifying, Macallister is at the top of her game." — Fiona Davis, bestselling author of The Masterpiece and The Address
"Greer Macallister’s characters never fail to leap off the page into your very soul; you can’t help loving them, rooting for them, agonizing with them over the choices they must make. Woman 99 is richly and expertly woven with chilling historical details – you won’t soon forget what it was like to be behind the locked doors of Goldengrove Asylum on a mission to save someone you love." — Susan Meissner, bestselling author of As Bright as Heaven
"Macallister’s mastery of historical fiction is on full display in WOMAN 99. Her incisive voice brings a dark chapter of our past to life with unsettling contemporary resonance." — Julia Whelan, award-winning audiobook narrator and author of My Oxford Year
"Macallister sensitively and adroitly portrays mental illness in an era when it was just beginning to be understood, while weaving a riveting tale of loyalty, love, and sacrifice." — Publishers Weekly
"Exploring sisterhood, trauma, and the power of shared experience, Woman 99 is an undercover glimpse inside a late nineteenth-century treatment facility. Macallister fearlessly probes the dark corners of the era, exposing barbaric treatments and backward thinking surrounding mental illness." — Booklist
"Readers will become engrossed in Charlotte’s journey of self-discovery as she fights to free herself and her sister from a rigged system." — Library Journal
"It's impossible not to root for the sisters as they work to combat that mistreatment on behalf of themselves and others. Woman 99 is a fast-paced historical thriller perfect for book club discussions." — Shelf Awareness
"A fascinating, suspenseful story...[The] message rings true today, with a timelessness that adds to the tension as we read." — Washington City Paper