Book Reviews

Review: Wages of Sin by Kaite Welsh

Doctors had many ways of making women take their medicine.

Have you have ever wondered what it was like to be an aspiring female doctor in the first class of women allowed in Scottish universities?

I was going to become a doctor, no matter what it took…I had no idea then of just quite how much courage I was going to need.

The Wages of Sin is a fascinating story that mixes Sarah Gilchrest’s haunting past and challenging future. Her journey is not only full of first hand experiences of the societal injustice of the sexes, medical school workloads and catty classmates, but also the murder of a prostitute named Lucy. Feeling responsible for Lucy’s fate, Sarah must uncover the murder before falling into their grips herself.

We tell ourselves they wouldn’t survive without us, but the truth is we can’t survive without them. Nice girls don’t see women like us.

This story is a slow burner and the pace is almost stop and start. There are events which propel the plot and light the senses, only for there to be pages again of daily activity. Additionally, at the end it felt like in the last pages the whole mystery was uncovered at a pace that left me having to read again to make sure I did not miss anything. However, it is clear that this story is the foundation for a whole series, one I look forward to because Sarah’s character is absolutely fascinating.

Why did we do this to each other? I was as guilty as the next woman, I knew it…in the end had we just exchanged one kind of competition for another?

She is not only a well moneyed woman striving against sexism and societal prejudice, but her past is riddled with secrets, shame, and trauma. Throughout the entire book her character is developed as we are shown a complete picture of her missteps, her obsessions, and the ghosts of her past. I would also like to point out that, when I was reading this, there were so many moments where I wondered, has much changed since? Especially considering events of late. The book explores issues of sexism, as well as blame the victim rhetoric.

I knew how the world worked; I knew it could be cruel, and I was not content to let it remain so.

The strength of this novel lies in Sarah’s character, her memories, and her indomitable spirit. It is worth noting that this novel seems to be a retelling of Sherlock Holmes (which I suspected, but was confirmed for me by the end). Overall I really enjoyed this book, getting to know Sarah, and will enjoy reading the sequel when it comes out! Go here if you want to pre-order a copy for yourself it releases tomorrow, visit the author’s website, or add the book on goodreads.

Disclaimer: I received this book in exchange for an honest review from Edelweiss.

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If you liked this book review, you might like A Study in Scarlet Women


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2 thoughts on “Review: Wages of Sin by Kaite Welsh

  1. Egads. I am so sorry. I completely spaced out that I signed up to be comment partners this month. You are my partner. I will make up for it and visit you every day! Ha! Now I will be a pest as well as a partner.

    Do you have any knowledge if the character in your book was based upon an actual Scottish female doctor. I couldn’t tell from the review how you felt about the book. Does that mean you are sort of neutral on it? Would you recommend it to others or give it a meh?

    Talk to you soon and I hope you jump over and meet me on my blog, too.
    -Anne@Headfullofbooks

    1. No problem! Howdy partner 🙂 I am sorry I was slacking for yours too, I kept reading but forgetting to comment 🙁

      No I have no clue if it is, sorry. I enjoyed it for sure, but felt like it was more like a 3.5 star kind of deal. I am more excited for the sequel though!

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