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review 2019-02-21 17:37
A Treacherous Curse / Deanna Raybourn
A Treacherous Curse - Deanna Raybourn

London, 1888. As colorful and unfettered as the butterflies she collects, Victorian adventuress Veronica Speedwell can’t resist the allure of an exotic mystery—particularly one involving her enigmatic colleague, Stoker.

His former expedition partner has vanished from an archaeological dig with a priceless diadem unearthed from the newly discovered tomb of an Egyptian princess. This disappearance is just the latest in a string of unfortunate events that have plagued the controversial expedition, and rumors abound that the curse of the vengeful princess has been unleashed as the shadowy figure of Anubis himself stalks the streets of London.

But the perils of an ancient curse are not the only challenges Veronica must face as sordid details and malevolent enemies emerge from Stoker’s past.

Caught in a tangle of conspiracies and threats—and thrust into the public eye by an enterprising new foe—Veronica must separate facts from fantasy to unravel a web of duplicity that threatens to cost Stoker everything. . .


I do love sassy, sarcastic Veronica Speedwell! I am caught up now and ready to enjoy the next book in the series, which is due out in March 2019. (Next month! Squee!)

I adore Raybourn’s writing and the particular voice that she has established for Veronica. For example:

“Boys!” I said sharply. “There will be no brawling with your shirts on. Kindly remove your upper garments and give them into my keeping.” Both men turned to look at me, wearing identical expressions of astonishment. Mornaday spoke first. “I beg your pardon?” I adopted my best nanny tone—one that I had used with excellent results to bring unruly suitors to heel. “You cannot strike an opponent properly while hampered by a tight coat,” I pointed out. “Or a fitted waistcoat. And white does show the blood so badly. The shirt must come off as well.” I put out my hands. “Come on, then. Shirts off, both of you. Shall you fight to first blood or unconsciousness? I always think first blood is a little lacking. Let’s go until one of you is entirely senseless, shall we?”

Needless to say that the “boys,” Stoker and Moraday, think better of their impulse to beat on one another.

I’m also enjoying the slow progression of the friendship between Veronica and Stoker—we get the distinct impression that Raybourn will bring them together eventually, but she realizes that would change the chemistry of the books substantially and wisely is proceeding slowly towards that end. Throwing them into each other’s arms would take the wind out of the sails of the series.

The author has hinted that there may be further books (after #4) in this series, if she gets the word from the publisher. I can only hope that they give her the green light, as I would totally read as many as she can produce.

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review 2019-02-21 14:59
Snakes & Ladders : Square one
A Treacherous Curse - Deanna Raybourn


A book by a woman author.


And what a good one!  I hadn't meant to read two Deanna Raybourn books back-to-back, but it was delightful.  I really enjoy both Lady Julia and Veronica Speedwell.


A shake of the dice:  5 (on square 6 to remind my faulty memory for the next move)


So now, my mission is Title has a colour word in it.


There's nothing in my current reading queue that fills this requirement, so I'm going to read my real-life book club selection in lieu (and get to shake only one die this time when I'm done).  The Dinner by Herman Koch.




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review 2019-02-20 13:34
Interesting retelling of Beauty and the Beast
A Curse So Dark and Lonely - Brigid Kemmerer

It was not what she was expecting when she went to an unconscious woman's aid, to end up in a world with no technology, in a castle with two men and worrying about her sick mother and what had happened to the brother she was supposed to be keeping watch for.
For Harper her life had never been easy, her father had lost all their money, her mother has cancer and her brother has got himself involved in some very murky dealings, to add to it she has Cerebral Palsy, not that that has every got in the way of her doing what she wants (except where she had to do ballet and would have prefered more horse-riding, but the doctors insisted)
Prince Rhen is repeating his 18th Autumn over and over again and he can't break the curse that causes him to turn into a ravening beast mid-way through the month, where he has killed people. Harper is different and is making different demands from him that he's starting to actually think and try to work around his problems, but the Witch who cursed him has plans and his survival isn't one of them.
I liked it, though the ending with the obvious sequel bait felt a little added on. The characters had determination and gumption and I'm curious to see what happens next.

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review 2018-12-05 17:31
Daft: “The Dain Curse” by Dashiell Hammett
The Dain Curse - Dashiell Hammett

(Original Review, 1981-03-08)

"We don't do it that way...You're a storywriter. I can't trust you not to build up on what I tell you. I'll save mine till after you've spoken your piece, so yours won't be twisted to fit mine."

In “The Dain Curse” by Dashiell Hammett

"'Are you -- who make your living snooping -- sneering at my curiosity about people and my attempts to satisfy it?'
'We're different...I do mine with the object of putting people in jail, and I get paid for it, though not as much as I should.'
'That's not different...I do mine with the object of putting people in books, and I get paid for it, though not as much as I should.'"

In “The Dain Curse” by Dashiell Hammett




If you're into stuff like this, you can read the full review.

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text 2018-11-20 13:15
Reading progress update: I've read 13%.
A Curse So Dark and Lonely - Brigid Kemmerer

The formatting on my kindle copy from netgalley and the pdf on Bluefire Reader is all over the place and it's annoying me and sapping the enjoyment of the book. Putting this one aside until my finished copy arrives. 

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