Quicksilver, by Amanda Quick

>> Sunday, March 04, 2012

TITLE: Quicksilver
AUTHOR: Amanda Quick

PAGES: 352

SETTING: Victorian England
TYPE: Paranormal Romance
SERIES: Book 2 of the Looking Glass Trilogy, part of the Arcane Society series

In the New York Times-bestselling author's latest Arcane Society novel, a paranormal killer pushes an unlikely duo's powers and passions to the limit.

Virginia Dean wakes at midnight beside a dead body, with a bloody knife in her hand and no memory of the evening's events. Dark energy, emanating from the mirrors lining the room, overpowers her senses. With no apparent way in or out, she is rescued by a man she has met only once before, but won't soon forget.

Owen Sweetwater inherited his family's talent for hunting the psychical monsters who prey on London's women and children, and his investigation into the deaths of two glass-readers has led him here. The high-society types of the exclusive Arcane Society would consider Virginia an illusionist, a charlatan, even a criminal, but Owen knows better. Virginia's powers are real-and they just might be the key to solving this challenging case.
I started reading this and my heart sank. The first couple of chapters were mindnumbingly boring. I have been on a downward trend with JAK and her Arcane Society stuff, and I thought this was going to be the book that finally made me stop reading her, and that I might not even finish it.

The plot revolves around an investigation into the deaths of two glass-readers. The heroine, Virginia Dean, gets involved when she wakes up beside a dead body, having no idea what's just happened. She'd been called to an aristocratic household for a reading, and clearly stumbled upon something dangerous.

She's rescued from the very hairy situation by Owen Sweetwater, who's been commissioned to look into the glass-readers deaths. The Sweetwaters have appeared in previous Arcane books, a family whose mission is to go after those who are abusing their psychic powers, and that's very much Owen's line of work. But there's another tradition in the family: if they don't find their mate, they're destined to basically go mad.

So far, so predictable. I've read this a thousand time, and written by this very author, in the past few years.

But then things suddenly started improving. The suspense got a little bit more interesting (still not great, but at least readable), but it was the romance that got really nice. Virginia and Owen really connected, and I started to get the tingly feeling I used to always get with JAK: these two are perfect for each other, and there's a true emotional intimacy between them. That, coupled with some nice, gentle humour and witty banter made me enjoy this very much.

And then there was some very nice drama related with the Virginia's father's legitimate family, a cute (if very understated) secondary romance and a truly fantastic housekeeper. In the end, Quicksilver turned out to be better than many of JAK's latest.



Darlynne,  4 March 2012 at 20:45  

<span>I tried to read an Arcane Society book once, but couldn't get past the first few pages for the same reason. Perhaps I should try again and hang in there longer. Would this be as good a title as any to start with?</span>

rosario001,  5 March 2012 at 06:52  

Darlynne: I guess it is. This one or Burning Lamp, which I think is the previous Amanda Quick. I also liked the latest one, Copper Beach, which is a contemp and doesn't seem to be formally part of the Arcane society, but has similar paranormal elements. 

Shannon,  8 March 2012 at 16:28  

I am glad to hear that this one was good. Like you, I have been losing my love for JAK, which saddens me since she was the author who turned me on to contemporary romances. I may have to give this one a try.

rosario001,  12 March 2012 at 10:10  

From what I've seen, she seems to at least be moving away from the ARcane books, which is a development I'm quite happy about. Her older contemps are what keeps me reading her, hoping for the magic to come back!

ludia,  18 March 2012 at 01:05  

I really don't understand what has happened with JAK's writing style lately...this book was such a huge disappointment after a lukewarm burning lamp from the same series...I hope JAK gets her shtick back together pronto. She was my absolute favorite fluff romance writer from adolescence...I might pick up again Ravished or Trust Me just to forget completely this ghastly Quicksilver...not that this book is memorable in a good way, it's just it might won as the worst AQ/JAK I have ever read - it was boring, except for maybe the beginning :'( :(

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