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Belladonna (Secrets of the Eternal Rose) Hardcover – July 16, 2013


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Product Details

  • Series: Secrets of the Eternal Rose
  • Hardcover: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Philomel (July 16, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0399257268
  • ISBN-13: 978-0399257261
  • Product Dimensions: 6.3 x 1.3 x 9.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #803,551 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Soon after her secret lover, Falco, leaves Venice, Cass is told that her fiancé, Luca da Perago, has been arrested for heresy. In a stealth visit to his cell, Cass learns that Luca believes these false imprisonments and deaths are related to the Order of the Eternal Rose and its book, which is possessed by the Order’s leader, who lives in Florence. With only this clue, Cass sails from Venice to Florence. Paul’s second novel in the tantalizing Order of the Eternal Rose series is almost as exciting and evocative of Renaissance Italy as her first, Venom (2012). Cass’ rediscovery of Falco and his lucrative, if bizarre, apprenticeship to Bella Briani—better known as Belladonna for her ageless beauty—lures Cass into an underworld of murder, human dissection, and debauchery. As she begins to unravel the mystery of the Order and its goal to find the fifth Humor that guarantees eternal life, she finally begins to appreciate Luca’s unselfish strength and bravery, a discovery that makes her even more determined to save him. Enthusiastic readers will await the third book in the series. Grades 9-12. --Frances Bradburn

Review

"Deftly balancing beauty and death, Venom renders the canals of renaissance Venice frightening and irresistible in a sensual tale where no one can be trusted and passions kill." --Andrea Cremer, New York Times bestselling author of the Nightshade series

Customer Reviews

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I cannot wait to read Starling to see what happens next.
ktu35114
Also, I won't reveal any spoilers, but a big thing happens at the end of the book that left me feeling frustrated.
Lisa from Read.Breathe.Relax.
Once again, Fiona Paul managed to hypnotize me with beautiful writing and a seductive story!
Sara @ Forever 17 Books

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Alyssa on July 16, 2013
Format: Hardcover
***Review posted on The Eater of Books! blog***

Belladonna by Fiona Paul
Book Two of the Secrets of the Eternal Rose series
Publisher: Philomel
Publication Date: July 16, 2013
Rating: 4 stars
Source: ARC sent by Paper Lit Lantern

Summary (from Goodreads):

In the second in the stunning Secrets of the Eternal Rose series, Cassandra Caravello is trying to forget Falco, the wild artist who ran off with her heart, as she grows closer to her strong, steady fiancé, Luca. But Luca seems to have his own secrets. When he's arrested by soldiers in the middle of the night, Cass's life is once again thrown into chaos. She must save Luca, and that means finding the Book of the Eternal Rose--the only evidence that will prove he's innocent.

So begins her journey to Florence, a city haunted by whispers of vampirism, secret soirees and clandestine meetings of the Order of the Eternal Rose. And home to Falco, who is working for the Order's eerily stunning leader, the Belladonna herself.

Can Cass trust her heart to lead her to the truth this time? Nothing is as it seems in this seductive thriller, where the truth may be the deadliest poison of all.

What I Liked:

You all know I didn't like Venom as much as I'd hoped. I gave it three stars - but at the time, I wasn't sure if the rating was truly representative of how I felt. I absolutely LOVE historical fiction - it's my second favorite genre - and I love history. So, it sort of hurt to be disappointed by a much anticipated historical fiction novel.

Nevertheless, I found Belladonna much more to my liking. Not only was Belladonna better in comparison to Venom, but it was just an all-around good book! I really enjoyed it!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Jovon on July 16, 2013
Format: Hardcover
I had super high hopes for Belladonna by Fiona Paul and unfortunately I was just not able to lose myself in this book like I would have liked to. I love it when a book gets my heart racing and I am so excited to know what happens next that I have to actively stop myself from skipping pages and Belladonna did not do this for me and I am a little disappointed.

Belladonna is the second book in The Secrets of the Eternal Rose series and maybe because I haven't read the first book, Venom, that's why I didn't enjoy this book as much as I was expecting. On Goodreads it has a great star rating! Sometimes I do read books outside of it sequence and then continue the series in order from there and I have no problems...I did just this recently and thoroughly enjoyed the book! However, with Belladonna I was lost and confused with the mentions of several characters or situations Cass found herself in and to be honest, this probably took some magic of the book away from me.

Belladonna has some great pros though! Cass: she's very scared throughout her mission to Florence yet she shows incredible and awe striking bravery in the face of every danger she comes across! All to clear her fiance, Luca's, name and in doing so save his life! There is no shortage of mystery to this book and there is plenty of suspense as Cass and her handmaid, Siena, crash secret and forbidden parties, visit mysterious noblewomen, hide away escaped servants and attempt to free Luca!

While I enjoyed Cass's character, my favorites were Siena and Luca, Cass's fiance. Siena is very loyal to Cass and Luca even while she has a secret love for Luca and never acts on it. Like Cass says "You can't help who you fall in love with". Luca is also just as loyal towards Cass.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By ktu35114 on July 2, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition
Phew, what a read, another fantastic instalment of the Secrets of the Eternal Rose series. This secret society seems to be getting even more intriguing and mysterious with each book and I cannot wait for Starling. I loved Venom and loved Belladonna even more. Ms Paul's writing style is fantastic, so well written and detailed that I could smell and feel the horrible water in the prison; feel the slimy things writhing in the water. Oh boy and the romance, ooohhhh!

After the stress of the murdered girls and Luca turning up and saving the day, Cassandra (or better known as Cass) was coming around to the fact that she is inevitably going to marry Luca and Falco has gone.

After awaking from another nightmare, Cass is disturbed to hear noises out her door and finds Luca has been arrested with no reason why. Cass and her Aunt are overwhelmed and extremely upset by this and can't understand why Luca would be arrested. Now Cass is determined to find out the truth and help Luca to be released.

There is gossip all over Venice about Luca and Cass has heard that he was arrested on heresy against the Church; he is sentenced for execution in one month. Cass speaks with Luca and they are adamant they know who is behind his arrest. Cass has to find the book of The Order of the Eternal Rose to help free Luca and show evidence against Dubois.

Cass is off to Florence with her best friend, Mada. Cass believes the book is located here and will hopefully be able to find it on her trip. Cass ventures to the market and views executions of young women believed to be vampires. So unexpectedly she finds Falco. How is Falco in Florence? Is it fate that they ended up in the same place?
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More About the Author

Fiona Paul lives in St. Louis, MO where she managed to persuade fancy universities to award her degrees in psychology and nursing. Between her studies, she traveled around five continents and spent time living in Thailand and South Korea (which is probably why she finds the idea of wearing shoes in the house a little weird).

In addition to writing, Fiona is somewhat obsessive about coffee, music, and adventure sports. Her future goals include swimming with great white sharks and writing a whole slew of novels, not necessarily in that order.

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