The Madman’s Daughter by Megan Shepherd

The basics

Title: The Madman’s Daughter


Series: The Madman's Daughter #1

- The Madman's Daughter (January 2013)
- Her Dark Curiosity (January 2014)
- A Cold Legacy (January 2015)

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Goodreads Summary:

Sixteen-year-old Juliet Moreau has built a life for herself in London—working as a maid, attending church on Sundays, and trying not to think about the scandal that ruined her life. After all, no one ever proved the rumors about her father's gruesome experiments. But when she learns he is alive and continuing his work on a remote tropical island, she is determined to find out if the accusations are true.

Accompanied by her father's handsome young assistant, Montgomery, and an enigmatic castaway, Edward—both of whom she is deeply drawn to—Juliet travels to the island, only to discover the depths of her father's madness: He has experimented on animals so that they resemble, speak, and behave as humans. And worse, one of the creatures has turned violent and is killing the island's inhabitants. Torn between horror and scientific curiosity, Juliet knows she must end her father's dangerous experiments and escape her jungle prison before it's too late. Yet as the island falls into chaos, she discovers the extent of her father's genius—and madness—in her own blood.

Read a full summary of The Madman’s Daughter by Megan Shepherd below. If you can’t remember what happened in The Madman’s Daughter and you need a refresher, then you’re in the right place.

in short

Juliet comes across her old friend Montgomery and persuades him to take her to the island where her father has been hiding out and doing experiments. During the boat journey, she meets a guy called Edward Prince. Once on the island, she and her father try to reconnect but she soon discovers that he’s been doing vivisections on animals and creating new creatures. Obviously their relationship isn’t all that healthy. Oh, and something has been killing islanders. Juliet discovers that her father once did an operation on her, and she was his first creation. She needs injections to keep all the animal bits and pieces together and healthy, just like the islanders. The islanders rebel against Juliet’s father, and Edward is revealed to be the person who’s going around killing people. More than that, he’s also a creation and he had been keeping all this a secret! Juliet and Montgomery fight off Edward, and Juliet escapes the island. Montgomery chooses to stay.

what happened in The Madman’s Daughter?

  • Juliet works as a maid at King’s College in London. Her father was presumed dead when she was younger, leaving her and her mother in poverty. Her mother died shortly before the start of the novel.
  • Juliet sneaks into one of the labs with her friend and some boys. She kills a rabbit to put it out of its misery. She finds a bit of paper that suggests that her father is staying in an inn in London.
  • Juliet goes to the inn, but instead of her father, she finds her childhood friend, Montgomery. Montgomery is working for her father as his assistant on an island off the coast of Australia. So her father is alive, he just left her and doesn’t seem to care about her at all. Juliet storms out.
  • Back at King’s College, Dr Hastings attempts to sexually assault Juliet. She severs tendons in his hand, which means he can never perform surgery again. He goes to the police, and Mrs Bell tells Juliet to leave town. Since she’s out of options, she hops on a boat with Montgomery and goes to the island.
  • During the boat journey, a young lad is rescued after being shipwrecked. His name is Edward and he’s rich and posh. He and Juliet develop a small bond over a monkey. Once the ship reaches the island, Edward decides to stay with Juliet because he has feelings for her.
  • Juliet and her father are reunited on the island. He doesn’t seem to be that unhappy to see her. He isn’t happy to see Edward, though, and promptly pushes him into the water and leaves him to drown. Montgomery rescues him because Montgomery is lovely.
  • Juliet reveals that she has to have a daily injection because she has a glycogen deficiency. If she doesn’t get the injections then she starts to get dizzy.
  • Juliet and her father plan to go on a picnic together, but things keep happening and it gets further and further delayed. Meanwhile, her father refuses to let her join him with his science-y stuff because apparently it’s a guy thing. He apologises for leaving her behind in London and suggests they put the past behind them.
  • It’s revealed that Juliet’s father has been doing vivisections on animals. He also operates on islanders. Montgomery has been assisting him, so Juliet is very upset. She runs away from the main building and into the jungle. Which is a terrible idea, considering there’s something going around killing the islanders.
  • Edwards finds Juliet and he tells Juliet that neither Montgomery nor her father knows what has been killing people. Juliet finds a cabin, and she sees footprints that show only three toes. Juliet and Edward come across some islanders arguing.
  • Edward tells Juliet that his uncle was involved with Scotland Yard, and he investigated the case at King’s College, which was to do with vivisections and it is what drove Juliet’s father away from London.
  • Juliet and Edward consider building a raft and drifting out to see, but there are hardly ever any ships passing by. Juliet asks Edward what the waterlogged photograph (which he had in his pocket when he was rescued from the sea) was of. He says he doesn’t remember.
  • Edward disappears, and Juliet comes across an islander called Jaguar. He says that he’ll take her back to the compound, but Juliet doesn’t trust him so she runs. She finds one of the islanders’ villages, and meets someone called Caesar. He says he’s the minister of the island. Juliet’s father finds her there, and Edward also returns.
  • Edward asks Juliet’s father what his intention is, and why he’s operating on live animals. Juliet’s father says that he’s in pursuit of the ideal living form. He says that he gives the islanders a serum to prevent the tissue from rejecting the new form, since the islanders are basically made up of several different animals. He says that the serum is his fail-safe, so if anything goes wrong he can stop giving them treatment and they’ll go back to being animals. There was a guy called Ajax who was really intelligent. He stopped his own treatment because he wanted to regress. Ajax now calls himself Jaguar.
  • Juliet figures out that her own treatment is similar to the islanders’. She asks Montgomery about it and he swears that it’s different.
  • The murderer breaks into the compound. Juliet sees it’s silhouette and it’s three claws outside her bedroom window. The others (the men) had taken all the guns so Juliet was defenceless. When her father returns, Juliet tells him that the monster got into the compound.  He tells her she is mistaken, and Juliet tells him that he was wrong to create the islanders. Her father hits her.
  • The islanders all start to rebel. Who could have seen this coming? They get rid of Caesar, and a guy called Antigonus tries to kill Juliet’s father. Edward shoots Antigonus before he can do any real damage. They get back to the compound and it turns out that the little girl, Alice, is dead. Juliet asks Montgomery if he was in love with Alice, and Montgomery says he wasn’t, and that Alice was one of the creations. Montgomery was the one to create her.
  • They go and confront Juliet’s father, and he pulls a gun on them. He ties Juliet up and locks her in a room. Montgomery goes off with Juliet’s father, since he has a gun held to his head and all.
  • It’s revealed that Juliet was the first creation. Juliet was born malformed, and so her father operated on her. She was missing many organs by the time he was done, so he replaced them with those of animals, the main one being a deer.
  • Edward jabs Juliet’s father with a needle and it knocks him unconscious. He, Juliet, and Montgomery go to the ocean. They get in a boat, and a creepy water creature knocks them over. Montgomery disappears.
  • It’s revealed that Juliet’s father knew about her mother’s sickness, but he didn’t come to help.
  • Juliet sets all the animals free from their cages.
  • Balthazar tells Juliet that he wants to go to London with her. Juliet lies and tells him he can go, but really he can’t because he’s also one of her father’s creations.
  • The islanders plan to attack the compound.

how did it end?

Juliet finds out that Edward had been lying the entire time. His name isn’t Edward Prince, it’s Prince Edward, named after a Shakespearean character. It turns out that Edward is the monster who’s been going around killing people. Edward felt a connection to Juliet because they were both experiments.

Montgomery arrives and fights with Edward. Juliet and Montgomery manage to escape, and Edward gets trapped in the compound, which is burning to the ground. Juliet and Montgomery meet Balthazar by the ocean, and Juliet gets on a boat. Montgomery and Balthazar don’t leave with her, because Montgomery feels guilty about the experimenting. He says he belongs with the island.

This is a full plot summary of what happened in The Madman’s Daughter by Megan Shepherd. Check out our recap list for more recaps. If you can’t find what you need, you can request a recap from us!

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