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The Cocoa Conspiracy

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

The Cocoa Conspiracy (2014) Andrea Penrose

Set in England and Vienna in 1814.

Lady Adrianna stopped at her husband’s favorite bookseller on the way home from the market, only to get into a scuffle with a strange man over a book on chocolate.

Sandro, Lord Saybrook, is asked by his uncle, Lord Mellon, to attend a house party in which he hopes Saybrook’s Spanish blood will give him entree with the Spanish delegation.

It is while at this party that murder is attempted and Adrianna discovered dispatches hidden in the book she purchased for her husband.

While I believe in a good many radical ideas, I think fanatics of any cause are dangerous. Fomenting change through violence and bloodshed is not something I espouse.”

The mystery here is interesting, and the historical period–the time of the Conference of Vienna, is a fascinating one, but some of the things that happened were–a bit beyond belief.

I believe this passage sums up what bothered me.

Arianna heard a drawer bang, and then he was back, brandishing two perfectly matched pistols. “I wouldn’t lend these to just anyone, but you strike me as someone who knows how to handle them.”

Really?

And also this:

Drawing a steadying breath, Arianna took deliberate aim and squeezed off a shot. Bang. He wasn’t. Through the skirl of blue-gray smoke, Arianna saw the key explode in a whirl of spinning shards.

Finest deuling pistols in the world or not, that’s just not a shot that someone whose life is threatened is going to take–shooting a key out of someone’s hands.

I also took a little umbrage with the gentleman who had badly burned hands,–and then fought a sword duel.

The bandages were gone, but the comte’s elegant hands were still swollen and scabbed.

With scabbed and swollen hands this person can still pick up a sword and duel well? I find that unlikely.

Mind you , it wasn’t that the story overall was bad, it was just that there were a few too many unlikely events piled atop one another.

Self-published
Rating: 5.5/10

Categories: British, Historical, Mystery     Comments (0)    



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