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Historical Fiction Review: The Emperor's Conspiracy by Michelle Diener

The Emperor's Conspiracy by Michelle Diener


Egalley courtesy of Gallery Books

Synopsis from Goodreads
From nineteenth-century London’s elegant ballrooms to its darkest slums, a spirited young woman and a nobleman investigating for the Crown unmask a plot by Napoleon to bleed England of its gold.

Chance led to Charlotte Raven’s transformation from chimney sweep to wealthy, educated noblewoman, but she still walks a delicate tightrope between two worlds, unable to turn her back on the ruthless crime lord who was once her childhood protector.

When Lord Edward Durnham is tapped to solve the mystery of England’s rapidly disappearing gold, his search leads him to the stews of London, and Charlotte becomes his intriguing guide to the city’s dark, forbidding underworld. But as her involvement brings Charlotte to the attention of men who have no qualms about who they hurt, and as Edward forges a grudging alliance with the dangerous ghosts of Charlotte’s former life, she faces a choice: to continue living in limbo, or to close the door on the past and risk her heart and her happiness on an unpredictable future.


Amazon  US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK | The Book Depository US/UK

9/10

* * *
What a fabulous book! I haven't enjoyed historical fiction that much since... You know, I can't even remember.

Straight from the beginning this is non-stop action full of mystery and fantastic characterization. I think, the main heroine, Charlotte Raven is the one who made this book. Who owned this book.



She is pure kickass awesomeness. This is no wishy-washy simpering miss, who cries and thinks about her feelings way too much because she hasn't had anything else to worry about.

Charlotte grew up a chimney boy in the rookeries of London until at the age of twelve she stuck in the chimney of a noble but lonely lady and became her ward. Her arms are scarred, her mind is sharp and coldly rational, her best friend Luke grew up a psychotic crime lord of London area close to Mayfair. She can't let go of the friendship and she can't break his obsessive hold over her. Her admirers or people troubling her keep ending up dead and Charlotte learned to stay away from any sort of relationship until she saves Emma, another aristocratic lady from her husband's machinations and meets her handsome brother.

Edward is an agent of the Crown in the middle of an investigation of a huge conspiracy involving members of the ton. Emma's new friend with her detached ways and sharp mind surprises him and he decides to find out more about her which puts him on Luke's radar.

Now both Charlotte and Edward has to work on not getting him killed by her overprotective ex-lover and end up unravelling the mysterious conspiracy together.

Charlotte's mind was a fascinating and dark place. She is a ruthless and very practical woman, she stands her ground in the rookeries against Luke's heavy handedness and in the middle of a Society ball. She is quick and knows how manipulate situation towards her advantage, she doesn't hesitate to strike, to act, and frankly I read about her with growing sense of admiration.

Luke is just as amazing, and I love a bit of genuine psychotic character in fiction. All the more interesting to see what makes them tick, right? You end up feeling the same way as Charlotte about him - afraid, exhilarated and deeply sympathetic.

Overall, this book flows really well and reads in one go, you live and breathe it until it ends. There is no happy ending, instead the author makes you wonder what would happen next with the characters. However, I didn't find it irritating and only hope that there will be a next book ahead.

Highly recommended.

* * *
Просто восхитительная книга! Шикарный сюжет и ещё более прекрасные характеры.

Именно главная героиня - Шарлотт Рэйвен поднимает эту книгу на высоту. Здесь нет исторического романа, вместо этого это захватывающий триллер, где главные герои расследуют заговор против Короны во время войны с Наполеоном.

Шарлотт - это не сюсюкающая, заламывающая руки, хрупкая, невинная дева. Она выросла в трущобах Лондона и до 12 лет работала трубочистом пока не застряла в камине одного аристократического дома, и добрая, но одинокая хозяйка не сделала её своей подопечной. Теперь под перчатками её руки испещрены шрамами, её ум невероятно практичен, беспощаден и быстр, а её лучший друг Люк, превратившийся в одного из криминальных лордов Лондона не даёт ей свободно дышать своей одержимостью её защиты.

Люк - ещё один безумно итересный персонаж, социопат и довольно кровожадный характер. Шарлотт не может и шагу ступить, чтобы его шайка не доложила об этом Люку. Их связывают тесные узы, он её бывший любовник, а она спасла ему жизнь. Однако Люк не хочет её отпускать, и поклонники слишком близко подбирающиеся к ней оказываются мёртвыми, поэтом Шарлотта держится особняком  пока не помогает леди Эмме сбежать от мужа и не встречает её брата, Эдварда.

Эдвард работает в качестве агента Короны и как раз расследует вышеупомянутый заговор. Шарлотт с её нердинарными решениями и реакциями заинтересовывает его и он пытается разузнать о ней побольше, невольно привлекая к себе внимание Люка.

Теперь самой Шарлотт предстоит остановить Люка пока не поздно, и в то же время столкновение троицы пересекается с расследованием Эдварда, и они неожиданно начинает работать в одной команде...

Шарлотт, Шарлотт! Чем больше я её узнавала, тем больше она во мне вызывала восхищение. Люк тоже вызвал неординарную реакцию, невольно вышло, что на него я стала смотреть глазами Шарлотт - он вызывал страх и в то же время симпатию.

В общем, читайте. Сюжет быстрый, эпоха хороша нам известна, поэтому особого построения мира не требовалось. Книга прочлась на одном дыхании и хочется ещё!

6 comments:

Blodeuedd said...

I just want more :) I had to ask Diener about her next book and that one will be about other characters

Mel@Thedailyprophecy. said...

I liked this book! Charlotte definitely owned this book. I fell in love with her personality right away. I thought that her relationship with Edward was very cute. Luke added the perfect twist to the story, but I would have loved this book more if the mystery wasn't so much on the background. Great review! :D

Mel@thedailyprophecy.

Joyous Reads said...

A little bit darkness never hurt anybody. I think I'd like the characters in this book. Adding it to my tbr!

Fab review, as always, K.

xoxo

Maja (The Nocturnal Library) said...

I don't really read a lot of historical fiction, and I'm not even sure why anymore, but Charlotte certainly sounds like a character I'll want to meet, and besides, so much enthusiasm from you makes this a sure bet.
Adding to my tbr.
Thank you for the lovely review!

Petra said...

I noticed this book before and I thought it sounded great. Now it's going straight to my TBR! ;)

Christina said...

I'd already added this based on a good review, and it looks like a made a good choice!

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