Friday, May 17, 2013

A Study in Revenge by Kieran Shields (Plus Giveaway)

Synopsis From Dust Jacket:

In the summer of 1893 in Portland, Maine, police detective Archie Lean follows a trail of ashen footprints to the site of a dead body.  the victim is horribly scorched, and ominous occult symbols mark the nearby walls.  But what troubles Lean most is what he saw two days earlier: this same dead man being lowered into his grave without a burn mark on him.  Perplexed by the diabolically staged scene, the brilliant criminalist Perceval Grey.

Grey faces a mystery of his own when he agrees to a wealthy businessman's deathbed plea to locate his missing granddaughter.  The dying man's kin resent Grey, a half Abenkai Indian, intruding into their affairs.  They seem less interested in the vanished woman than in the recent theft of the thunderstone, a peculiar family heirloom marked with curious symbols.  Phebe Webster, the sister of the missing heiress, complicates matters for Grey when she joins forces with him only to find her own life in danger.

As the Webster family's shadowy history is revealed, the three mysteries intertwine to draw Lean and Grey into a maze of murder, deceit, and revenge.  Each deadly new clue points toward an even greater puzzle that will pit Grey against a devious murderer in a race to decipher the thunderstone's riddle - and reveal a centuries-old secret that men will kill to possess.

So in the last review I posted, I was reminding myself about how I used to have this habit of getting involved in a series, not from the beginning, but from somewhere in the middle.  I actually did it with the last book I reviewed for Crown, The Bedlam Detective.  So it should come as no surprise to anyone, let along myself, that once again I'm reviewing a book that takes place after another one.  And much like The Bedlam Detective, I'm finding myself a bit lost this time around.

I'm trying not to take anything away from A Study in Revenge, because the story itself, is terrific.  What I struggled with, where the relationship between the characters.  So much of what happened in the first book, is reflected in this one.  I feel as if I started watching a movie halfway through.  A movie I loved, but didn't fully get.

One day I will get around to reading the previous book, then maybe I will get why the librarian is so important or why the mysterious occult leader seems so bent on his diabolical, evil ways.  I may even begin to understand the full connections between the two protagonists.  It is definitely worth looking into, now I just need to find the time.

The wonderful group at Crown Publishers have generously offered my readers the chance to win a hardcover copy of this book for themselves.  The giveaway will last until 11:59 pm, CST, on 5/27/13.  You must be a resident of the United States to enter, and all you have to do is leave me a comment with your email address.  


Man of la Book said...

Don't know if I'd like this book or not but I have to say - great title.

Anonymous said...

well now that I won the other book of the series, I would love to win this one as well! Thanks for the giveaway Emma @ Words And Peace
ehc16e at yahoo dot com

Kaye said...

Hi Ryan! Sounds like a good read. Love the setting and timeframe. Please enter me in the drawing.


Have a wonderful week!

JaneGS said...

With few exceptions, I think series are best read in order. Sometimes they can stand alone, but the experience is richer if you have the full context of the earlier books in the series.

Michelle Miller said...

Well, I'm feeling a strange sense of deja vu. I think I might own The Bedlam Detective. I'll have to check. The title sounds SO familiar. Anyway, I'm going to enter because I might have the first one and even if I don't, I love the setting. It kind of reminds me of The Alienist, which I loved. Thanks for the chance!


Eadie Burke said...

As a matter of fact, I just finished reading the first book, The Truth of All Things, and I do know about the relationship between the two main characters and why the librarian is so important.

Anyhow, I think I need to win this book, so I can continue on with the series!

Thanks Ryan for the opportunity!

Anita Yancey said...

I think this book sounds like an amazing mystery. It has some good characters and I love the setting. I would enjoy reading this one. Thanks for having the giveaway.