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The Museum of Extraordinary Things

Cover: 'The Museum of Extraordinary Things'

Staff Review: "The Museum of Extraordinary Things" by Alice Hoffman


Set in New York in the early 1900s, this fascinating novel explores the world inside a museum of oddities. Professor Sardie fills his museum with human miracles and wonders at the beginning of each season in hopes of attracting the crowds that flood the city from spring to fall. Competition is fierce among summer attractions and his desperation for a star attraction grows every year. His daughter Coralie is too young to enter the museum at the beginning of the book, but as soon as she is old enough, her father quickly adds her as a star attraction, the human mermaid. We are pulled along with Coralie as she is swept up in the world of entertainment with its dark undercurrent of mystery, intrigue, and sinister intent. Professor Sardie can't keep Coralie secluded forever and a chance encounter with the photographer Eddie Cohen leaves her longing for more than her tiny world can offer. Strangely tied together by one missing girl, the lives of Eddie, Coralie, and Professor Sardie will meet in a twist that will leave all of them forever changed. This is a sweeping and deeply engaging read full of vivid characters you won't soon forget!

Audience: adults | Genre: fiction

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