From the author of The Book of Lost Fragrances comes a haunting novel about a grieving woman who discovers the lost journal of novelist Victor Hugo, awakening a mystery that spans centuries.
In 1843, novelist Victor Hugo’s beloved nineteen-year-old daughter
drowned. Ten years later, Hugo began participating in hundreds of
séances to reestablish contact with her. In the process, he claimed to
have communed with the likes of Plato, Galileo, Shakespeare, Dante,
Jesus—and even the Devil himself. Hugo’s transcriptions of these
conversations have all been published. Or so it was believed.
Recovering from her own losses, mythologist Jac L’Etoile arrives on
the Isle of Jersey—where Hugo conducted the séances—hoping to uncover a
secret about the island’s Celtic roots. But the man who’s invited her
there, a troubled soul named Theo Gaspard, has hopes she’ll help him
discover something quite different—Hugo’s lost conversations with
someone called the Shadow of the Sepulcher. What follows is an intricately plotted and atmospheric tale of
suspense with a spellbinding ghost story at its heart, by one of
America’s most gifted and imaginative novelists.
My Thoughts: Having previously read 2 novels in the Reincarnationist series (The Hypnotist and The Book of Lost Fragrances) I was looking forward to continuing on in the series which combines suspense, supernatural and historical elements to weave a compelling story. Reading the novels in this series is akin to losing yourself in a literary labyrinth. The author presents several paths-in this case those set in the past with a tortured Victor Hugo who will do anything to connect with his beloved deceased daughter Didine, the intriguing bits set in the B.C. era, and the present storyline featuring Jac and Theo, a conflicted friend from her past. Each story arc seems to lead you slowly along as you wend your way through wondering how they will collide in a thrilling conclusion. That is the pattern I have noticed with the previous two novels I have read in the series and Seduction is no exception.
I really like M.J. Rose's writing style because her books contain great imagery that allows you to envelope yourself in the character's environment. As with most novels that have a past and present storyline I found myself enjoying the parts set in the past more. I will say that I really did like Jac's story as well and I felt I got a better sense of her than I had from reading The Book of Lost Fragrances which is the first novel in the series featuring her. I find the whole reincarnation concept of these novels interesting although maybe a tad eccentric. I loved that this story featured a conflicted Victor Hugo as one of the characters.
The one downside to Seduction is that I consider myself an impatient reader who likes some action to occur up front. I recognize the appeal of the slow reveal in a book but this type of presentation is difficult for me personally because I get distracted easily waiting for the story to pull together. This was the case here but I know from previous experience with Rose's novels that the ending is well worth a little frustration here and there while waiting for the more suspenseful elements to occur. This "issue" is more my own personal preference rather than any knock on the book itself. Seduction did present a bit of action involving a lightning strike at the beginning which piqued my curiosity but then the novel veered into more strange occurrences meant to hold the readers interest. Overall, I appreciated this one as I have the others in the series. I dig this author's unique brand of storytelling and will doubtlessly be continuing on with subsequent novels in this series.
I received this book from the publisher for review for participation in the author's tour with Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours. These are my honest thoughts on the book.
About the Author:
M.J. Rose is the international best selling author of eleven novels
and two non-fiction books on marketing. Her fiction and non-fiction has
appeared in many magazines and reviews including Oprah Magazine. She has
been featured in the New York Times, Newsweek, Time, USA Today and on
the Today Show, and NPR radio. Rose graduated from Syracuse University,
spent the '80s in advertising, has
a commercial in the Museum of Modern
Art in NYC and since 2005 has run the first marketing company for
authors - Authorbuzz.com.
The television series PAST LIFE, was based on Rose's novels in the
Renincarnationist series. She is one of the founding board members of
International Thriller Writers and runs the blog- Buzz, Balls &
Hype. She is also the co-founder of Peroozal.com and BookTrib.com.
Rose lives in CT with her husband the musician and composer, Doug
Scofield, and their very spoiled and often photographed dog, Winka.
For more information on M.J. Rose and her novels, please visit her WEBSITE. You can also find her on Facebook and Twitter.