Tuesday, December 4, 2012
Waiting on Wednesday: Belladonna by Fiona Paul
Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases we're eagerly anticipating.
I just finished reading an ARC of Belladonna (Venom #2) by Fiona Paul, and it's amazing. I loved it even more than the first one! So I had to gush and gush about it to all of you to get you to read this terrific book when it comes out in July 2013.
Goodreads Book description: The second book in the Secrets of the Eternal Rose trilogy.
Cassandra follows a trail of clues about the mysterious Order of the Eternal Rose to Florence. There she runs into a few familiar faces, including Falco, who is now working for a nine-fingered woman known as Belladonna. When Cass discovers Belladonna is involved in the Order, she won’t rest until she discovers the shadowy society’s true purpose, knowledge that will put her—and everyone she loves—in terrible danger.
My Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
My Review: I received this book from Fiona Paul last week in exchange for an honest review. It will be hard to express how amazing I think this book is-- it's everything I wanted the first to be, and Fiona Paul is blossoming as an author.
Belladonna is a thrilling follow up to Venom, and starts us a few weeks after Venom ends. Cass is still living with her aunt Agnese, engaged to the handsome and honorable Luca, but she is still head over heels for the dashing, young artist, Falco, that has left her to go pursue his art in Florence. After the intense events at the end of book one, Luca is now arrested in the first few pages of Belladonna, and Cass finds a way to make her way to Florence with her best friend Mada and her sweet and loyal maid, Siena, in order to save Luca's life. Along the way, she meets up with Falco and the enticing and creepily gorgeous Belladonna, and chaos breaks loose.
I absolutely loved this book from beginning to end. We are thrust right into the action, and the pace never lets up. We see Cass still as a spoiled young girl, but she has developed in the first book, and this one, she really starts to grow up and understand what love really means. We still get the gorgeous landscape of Venice and Florence and the wonderful historical details that Fiona is so good at getting right-- but it fades into the background as we get to know our characters better, get swept up in the plot, and wring our hands to make sure that everything turns out right. We also find out a lot more about The Order of the Eternal Rose, and a lot of the secrets that were still hanging from the first book get answered very satisfactorily. I generally don't like to become a Team anything, but I have to say, I have a bigger crush on Luca after this book than I had in the last. What can I say? I have a thing for the "other boring love interest." Although, I'm not sure anyone will say he's boring after reading Belladonna.
All my reservations from the first book have vanished with this new installment. I think some of it is the fact that I'm not a big fan of the necessary development of main characters and world building in general for first books, and also the fact that Fiona Paul is just getting better and better with every book and word she writes. I feel honored to have been able to read this book and can't wait to see how this trilogy ends.
I loved, loved, LOVED this book! You all must read it. I can't wait to buy a hard copy.
What are you waiting for this week?
1. Interview and Giveaway with Tracy Rozzlynn, author of the Fast-Tracked and Verita trilogies, Two Sets of Fast-tracked (first two books), Two sets of Verita Trilogies (first two books) OR $25 Amazon GC
Verita and Fast Tracked Giveaway
2. US giveaway of 5 Elemental Bookmarks signed by Antony John
Elemental Bookmark Giveaway
3. Interview with Eric Gale and giveaway of signed ARC of The Bully Book (INT)
Bully Book Giveaway
4. Book Lovers Giveaway Hop Featuring Rachel Harris, author of My Super Sweet Sixteenth Century, US giveaway of signed paperback and International giveaway of e-copy,12/4-10
Book Lovers Giveaway Hop