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Goa (Blood of the Goddess/Kara Dalkey, 1) Hardcover – August, 1996

3.5 out of 5 stars 6 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

On the cusp of the medieval and modern worlds, dream-haunted journeyman apothecary Thomas Chinnery sets sail on Bear's Whelp for Cathay to trade in drugs for his master. But the Whelp's captain wants easier money from attacking Portuguese ships. Among the usual plunder, they find two prisoners to ransom: a Portuguese man accused of sorcery and a beautiful Indian woman accused of heresy, both being shipped from Goa to Portugal for trial by the Inquisition. In their possession is a potent drug called the Blood of the Goddess, and Thomas determines to find more of it. But others in Goa have heard of the drug as well, and the price of the Blood of the Goddess begins to mount, promising to cost more dearly than Thomas could have imagined.

From Publishers Weekly

Portugal's exotic colony of Goa, on India's western shore, was in the 16th century the farthest-flung outpost of Europe's fiercest and longest-lasting Inquisition. Here, historical fantasist Dalkey (The Nightingale) uses it as backdrop for an exemplary start to a new series. En route to Cathay on an Elizabethan privateer to establish trade in Oriental medicines, apothecary's apprentice Thomas Chinnery, an engaging young Englishman, stumbles upon, but then loses, a sorcerer's vial of powder that can resurrect the dead. In an obsessive quest for this unholy grail, Thomas follows his only link to it, the enigmatic Hindu beauty Aditi, through Goa's teeming multiracial byways, until he is trapped and interrogated under torture by the colony's fearsome Holy Office, whose Inquisitor Major, Domine Rui Sadrinho, is also hellbent on finding the eerie powder. Under investigation himself for practices even the Portuguese Grand Inquisitor finds irregular, Sadrinho needs the drug to extend beyond death the agonies he relishes inflicting in the name of the Church. Dalkey's meticulous research pays off in ravishing atmospherics that highlight the aromas, sights, sounds and traditions that shroud malevolent European church-and-mercantile-state power politics on a mysterious subcontinent. Every bit as absorbing is the author's rich tapestry of characters, from Timoteo, a 13-year-old monk whose irresistible innocence is the Inquisitor Major's most effective torture device, to sinister Father Antonio Gonscao, the Machiavellian special envoy of the Grand Inquisitor. Dalkey serves an exotic repast here, one that, like the exquisite spices of the Indies, tempts the palate with tantalizing hints of wonders yet to come.
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Product Details

  • Series: Blood of the Goddess/Kara Dalkey, 1 (Book 1)
  • Hardcover: 252 pages
  • Publisher: Tor Books; 1st edition (August 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0312860005
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312860004
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 6 x 8.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,373,348 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By A Customer on January 14, 2000
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
What a disappointment to be in the middle of a story and suddenly the book just ends! Unbelievable. Was it the publisher's decision to split a fantasy novel into a "trilogy"? I can't believe an author would actually consider this 205 pages a standalone or even a piece of a trilogy. It was nothing more than a few chapters building a story. Very disappointing.
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Format: Paperback
A slender volume of an intended trilogy which reads quickly and well. The subject matter, a young apprentice herbalist sent to India to trade for rare herbs and medicaments in the era of the Inquisition, is fascinating. The book is a little too short, and it is obvious within the first 50 pages that we are being set up for future volumes, which did not inspire me to read on. However, read on I did, and I quite enjoyed the blend of historical fiction and fantastical magic. I would advise waiting for the trilogy to be finished and then reading it all together in one go.
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By A Customer on December 30, 2002
Format: Hardcover
I picked up this book at the library a couple years ago after reading the Water triligy. The books were great! I love myths so I enjoyed the book. But, being 13 at the time, I found that some of the book was a little inapropriate. If you're thinking of gettting this book for a kid, get the Water triligy instead, wait a few years for this one.
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