This non-fiction about the lives of Violet and Daisy Hilton was AMAZING! Born to an unwed mother in 1908, Violet and Daisy were conjoined at the base of their spines. In those times, children who were born with this type of physiology were often shunned or considered bad luck. So, their mother promptly gave them away to Mary Hilton, her attending midwife. Whereas their birth mother saw them as something to escape, Mary saw them as her ticket to fortune. She soon started showing the girls off in backroom sideshows at her pubs and making money from letting people gawk at them.
As time went on, Violet and Daisy were paraded through carnivals and sideshows, then national tours in Australia and the US. Their popularity grew, and so did Mary’s bank accounts.
But, life wasn’t the idyllic picture the public was sold. Behind the sausage curls and cute dresses, dancing and musical instrument, there were two very lonely girls being exploited by the people who should have been taking care of them. What they did next changed the course of their lives.
Sarah Miller’s writing is compulsively readable. She shows Violet and Daisy for the beautiful, complex people that they were, growing up in a time when there was very little they could control….until the day they did!
Check out Violet and Daisy: The Story of Vaudeville’s Famous Conjoined Twins today!