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Garden of Lies Hardcover – April 21, 2015
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“Amanda Quick is an exceptional storyteller.” —Los Angeles Daily News
“One of the most creative, inventive storytellers in the field, Quick infuses her own addictive brand of breathless, sexy adventure with dashes of vengeance, greed, and violence and a hefty splash of delectable, offbeat humor.” —Library Journal
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About the Author
Amanda Quick is a pseudonym for Jayne Ann Krentz, the author, under various pen names, of more than fifty New York Times bestsellers; there are more than 35 million copies of her books in print. She lives in Seattle.
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Garden of Lies starts with a really intriguing prologue, so if you read this on Kindle, check to make sure that Kindle didn't "conveniently" skip it for you. Slater Roxton is one of the more nuanced heroes we have seen from Quick in a while, born between two very different London cultures and with some remarkable life experiences, he's not just any substitute hero. Ursula Kern owns and operates an exclusive ladies secretarial pool. She has remade herself several times in an era when this wasn't typically possible for women, and in ways that absolutely fit the time period. When her best friend dies, and she believes it is murder, she upends her own life in order to find out the truth. Mostly Slater Roxton is along for the ride because he wants to protect Ursula. He is nicely protective but not overly so, and doesn't once as far as I can remember, step into alpha-hole territory. And furthermore, he respects Ursula, which makes it really easy for me to enjoy a book. The villainy and mystery were nice and twisty, and mostly (except for a brief flurry at the end) the relationship was nice and straightforward - which seems to be a nice change of pace for me. It reminded me why I loved Amanda Quick so much, because with her heroines could be smart, and brave, and resourceful, and intrepid, and any number of things besides just a damsel in distress requiring rescue. And in fact, the heroes could need rescuing too.
So, through the lens of my nostalgia, which is the only one I've got at the moment, this book was highly enjoyable. Trying to look at it objectively, I am not entirely certain new to Quick readers or those who don't have the same fond nostalgia as I do would rate it as highly. Still, for me this is a 4 star book.
The plot was exciting enough to keep me intrigued, but as always with these books, it's the romance and the writing style that draws me in. There is something relaxing about an Amanda Quick book.
A great book to fit into a busy week.
This story is about Ursula Kern who owns a secretarial agency in London, when one of her contracted ladies dies, she is sure that it is murder. Ursula decides to leave her current job with Slater Roxton in order to investigate the murder. When Roxton won't allow her to leave without accepting his help with the investigation, amazing things happen. She needs a lot of help!
I was disappointed that this historical didn't finish up what should have been a trilogy. If you are a fan, you were probably also expecting a return visit to the Crystal Garden story.
Ms Quick has now written two books since then; both good, but neither what I was waiting for.
Now on to the reason for the lower rating. I just couldn't seem to connect with the main characters in this story. I liked them, but wasn't invested as much as I usually am in what happened to them.
By the end of the story, I didn't feel I knew them, except in a very superficial way. That is definitely unheard of in one of her books!
The storyline was interesting, and had a lot of potential, but I felt it was underutilized somewhat.
Don't get me wrong; It is a very good story, just not up to her usual standards of excellence. It could have used a little more humor, heat, and action, in my humble opinion.
If you are a fan, you will probably enjoy it. If not, there are many of her books that would be better to start with than this one.
Slater is an interesting character because he is not a member of the upper class. His father was upper class but his mother, an actress, was only his father's mistress. However, their relationship was close and long lasting. In fact, his father chose Slater to manage his estate for his two younger half brothers after his death. Slater has spent years as an adventurer and had a near death experience which resulted in his spending a year at a monastery where he developed a unique philosophy and became a vegetarian. London is rife with rumors about him which he finds amusing.
The couple finds themselves in all kinds of danger as they investigate Ursula's friend's death. They find themselves involved in a plot to gain a monopoly on an exotic new drug which leads to murders, murder attempts, and blackmail.
This was another enjoyable historical mystery from Quick.