"The insane asylum on Blackwell’s Island
is a human rat trap. It is easy to get in, but
once there, it is impossible to get out."
- Nellie Bly
In order to get hired by a New York paper in 1887, a daring woman fakes insanity to report the atrocities going on inside a remote insane asylum.
the Book Cover of the Month Award
There's always a deeper story.
A FEIGNED MADNESS
— Nellie Bly
"The more I endeavored to assure [the doctors] of my sanity, the more they doubted it."
Ever since reading Jane Eyre in high school, Tonya has been drawn to dark stories, particularly of the gothic variety. Her influences include Mary Shelley, Edgar Allan Poe, and Bram Stoker. More contemporarily, she loves the work of Shirley Jackson, Agatha Christie, Margaret Atwood, and Laura Purcell.
When she landed on a story about a woman who pretended to be insane in order to write a newspaper story, she knew she’d landed on something she was meant to write.