Thursday, January 11, 2018

ARC Review: A Treacherous Curse by Deanna Raybourn

A Treacherous Curse
Author: Deanna Raybourn
Series: A Veronica Speedwell Mystery (Book 3)
Publication: Berkley (January 16, 2018)

Description: Members of an Egyptian expedition fall victim to an ancient mummy’s curse in this thrilling Veronica Speedwell novel from the New York Times bestselling author of the Lady Julia Grey mysteries.

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...

My Thoughts: Veronica Speedwell and her partner Revelstoke Templeton-Vane (Stoker) have another mystery to solve. This one hits home for Stoker because it involves the ex-wife who vilified him after leaving him for dead in the Amazon and the man she married who used to be Stoker's best friend.

It's 1888 and all things Egyptian are all the rage. When the ex-best friend, who was working as a photographer for an excavation, disappears after apparently stealing a priceless crown discovered in the dig, Stoker and Veronica need to find him before scandal again visits Stoker. Since Veronica is an illegitimate daughter of the Prince of Wales, scandal affecting Stoker will spill over onto her and greatly displease the Royal Family.

Stoker needs to confront the ex-wife who ruined his life and for whom he has very conflicted feelings. Of course, they also need to interview the man who was in charge of the dig, his Anglo-Egyptian wife, his spoiled daughter, his handsome assistant and the American millionaire and his son who used to be partners with the man in charge of the dig.

Meanwhile, the press is focusing on the possibility that that whole expedition was cursed since there have been deaths associated with it and Anubis (or someone posing as him) is appearing around London to keep the idea of the curse alive.

This was a great story. Veronica is such an intriguing character. She would be an original no matter what time period she lived in. She is particularly out of sync with Victorian womanhood. She is smart, brave, uninterested in public opinion, blunt, practical, and intrepid. I love her relationship with Stoker.

The story is filled with adventure from balloon flights to chasing miscreants through London's sewers and escaping burning buildings. Fans of historical mysteries will love getting to know Veronica and Stoker.

Favorite Quote:
I had made no secret of my perfectly sensible approach to relationships between the sexes -- namely that marriage was a ridiculously outmoded institution and that sexual exercise was both health-giving and revivifying to the spirits. In the interest of respectability, I never indulged whilst in England, preferring to satisfy my urges during my trips abroad, a discreet and wholly efficient arrangement.
I received this one in exchange for an honest review from Edelweiss. You can buy your copy here.

1 comment:

  1. I thought it was great too and look forward to where Veronica and Stoker go from here.


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