Description (from cover):
‘Blackmail. Arson. Murder. Obsession.
Beautiful as its peacock feathers may be, the priceless fan hidden deep within the Framling mansion has a legacy of death and destruction. And Drusilla Delany has no idea she’s been marked by its curse…
But the fan’s dark past might prove less of a danger than Fabian Framling himself. Dark, brooding, and dominating, will he be the one to save her from the fan’s cruel fate..or cause her demise?
Beautiful Drusilla Delany had always been a sensible girl, the daughter of an impoverished vicar in Victorian England. But then she became infatuated with wealthy Fabian and Lavinia Framling–and inherited an extraordinary fan with a beautiful and fateful curse! A knock-out novel of mysticism and murder from the author of The Silk Vendetta.’
Give me a Jean Plaidy novel any day and this historical fiction lover will be immensely happy. I have read most of Jean Plaidy’s historical fiction works and love them all. Plaidy is one of the masters of historical fiction and when I learned that Victoria Holt was her other pen name, of course I was intrigued and wanted to learn more. I know that under the name Victoria Holt she wrote more gothic romance and I was a little skeptical because I am not really a big fan of romance novels. However, this one was tastefully done and I loved it!
Drusilla Delany is a character that one can’t help but like. She is sensible, a good friend and smart. She spends her whole life being surrounded by the wealthy Framlings and soon is considered a companion to Lavinia Framling. Lavinia is the complete opposite of Drusilla. Lavinia is rash, very beautiful and not in the least bit sensible. Lavinia and Drusilla grow up together and are soon sent off to school where Lavinia soon finds herself in a spot of bother. Drusilla being the loyal friend that she is, helps Lavinia during her times of trouble and remains a steadfast and true friend despite Lavinia’s selfish ways. The reader can’t help but admire Drusilla for her character and her loyalty and hate Lavinia for being so wrapped up in her own self. Drusilla does not have the power of wealth or a title to make her way in the world and she must use her own wits to make sure she is not swallowed whole by people who would take advantage of her.
I really enjoyed this one because I found myself being intrigued with the story and the characters from page one. Victoria Holt or Jean Plaidy always has been one of my favorite authors and it’s really hard for me not to like everything she’s written. She creates the atmosphere of the Victorian era with ease and makes for an interesting storyline and characters. The only problem I did have with this one was that there were numerous, and I mean a lot, of grammatical errors and typos in this edition, but as it is an ARC copy, I sincerely hope that the editor will make the necessary changes before going to press. One can only hope. It’s hard for me to deduct on the rating for the grammatical errors, because obviously they weren’t the author’s fault as she is deceased and this is a reprint copy. Nevertheless, a good story with strong characters that I found myself hard pressed to put down. I seriously need to get more of her works and read them as soon as possible.
Overall Rating: 4.5
Disclaimer: This book was given to me by the publisher, through Goodreads, in exchange for my honest review. I reviewed this book without compensation of any kind. All thoughts and opinions are solely mine.