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Search tags: The-Cocoa-Conspiracy:-A-Lady-Arianna-Regency-Myste
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review 2013-05-30 00:00
The Cocoa Conspiracy - Andrea Penrose This second-in-series book was better developed than the previous book in the series, but still a bit lacking in overall enjoyment. I will finish the series, but only because I am caught up with wanting to figure out the overarching plot, otherwise it would be a forgettable series and be dropped somewhere for Book Crossing or some other sharing service. An interesting enough diversion type book, but nothing I would suggest anyone seek out.

Also, and this is a minor point, but one of the recipes is woefully incomplete. The instructions end after mixing everything together and setting aside. I know it's not the end of the recipe because it's a cake and no baking was done. Minor point, but still very frustrating.
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review 2013-01-03 00:00
The Cocoa Conspiracy - Andrea Penrose
From Santa Lucy :-).
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review 2012-02-04 00:00
The Cocoa Conspiracy - Andrea Penrose 2.5 eh. Didn't like this one as much as the first one. It barely kept my attention. There were times when I felt I was listening to people talk...a lot....about Napoleon. I ended up skimming after about half way through. I still really like Sandro and Arianna, but not enough to wade through what felt like a ponderous mystery.
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review 2011-12-20 00:00
The Cocoa Conspiracy - Andrea Penrose The puns ruined this book for me. I really liked the first one because I thought it was interesting that there was a strong female character who was kind of a cold hearted bitch but still warm enough to fall for the hero.

So naturally I was excited to read another story with the Ice Princess Arianna (my own term) and the Sexy Spanish Prince Sandro (also my term) coming together to solve a mystery that in the process allows them to get closer together.

Welp, it didn't happen in this book.

In this book the character development was relegated to the background and any sort of 'closeness' was described in a sentence while the plot was heavy on the puns and littered with heavy pieces of history. I understand that it's a historical-fiction mystery. I didn't realize it was a history book, which has its own place in my pantheon of reading.

I don't have the book on me to give you a play by play of the whole sections that seem to be full of information that was disseminated in such a clunky fashion and neither can I show you the constant play on words (Shakespeare this is not) but trust me. You'll notice it right away.

Which is a shame because the characters and the world-building were shrouded in bits that were too dense and slightly boring. At other times it was woefully melodramatic.

This book is what happens when the Pink Carnation series .The Secret History of the Pink Carnation and the Lady Julia Grey series Silent on the Moor get together and have a drunken night of unprotected sex and hand the baby to a fourteen year old babysitter to raise instead of an adult.

Now, don't get me wrong. This isn't a bad book and the author isn't unskilled. In fact this has little to do with the author as I feel that the content editor should have caught most of these little things and sent it back for a rewrite.

This is what I came away from this book (which made me go "meh" when I was finished)

- I want to know more about the characters that are driving this story. If the pov's are between these characters I want to care about them again. I want to know why they're together, I want them to get closer and I want to feel connected to the mystery. The whole book picked up about thirty pages from the end and that's not enough for me. I need more.

- More Henning

- Please let Arianna punch Grentham in the mouth just once (please!)

- Give Arianna more guns, she's awesome with them

- Let Arianna and Sandro have a conversation like the one in the carriage in which they are speaking honestly to each other

- Have Sando have to play the doxy at least once

- I want to meet Antonia, I wonder if there's going to be a scandal involving her?

- Is Mellon just a tightass or does he have a reason for disapproving Arianna?

As you can see, while I wasn't firmly engaged in this book, I was engaged enough (thank you last 1/3 of the book) and I hope that the next book gets rid of the plays on words and the puns. PLEASE. It's not cute.
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review 2011-12-19 00:00
The Cocoa Conspiracy (Lady Arianna Regency Mystery #2)
The Cocoa Conspiracy - Andrea Penrose

A very good follow up to the first in the series. Fast paced, with an interesting plot. Most of the book takes place during historically accurate events, so history buffs will find the setting interesting. I look forward to the third book.

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