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The Quick: A Novel by Lauren Owen
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The Quick: A Novel

by Lauren Owen

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68810913,845 (3.35)123
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A dashing and dapper tale of undead decadence, "The Quick" is a loving and cultured nod to the era of early vampire greatness. ( )
  Birdo82 | Jan 15, 2017 |
The writing and the story in this book is captivating, visual, and worthy of your time. It's extremely difficult to say much about the plot and I suggest, if you don't like spoilers, that you don't read any reviews ahead of time, but just saying that I already feel like I've said too much! ( )
  Iambookish | Dec 14, 2016 |
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  lauri804 | Apr 21, 2016 |
Just a quick thing I have to say before I review this: the biggest problem of that book is, that the secrets of “The Quick” are being revealed far too quickly. That makes it really hard to review without telling you to much, so I can only review the first 100 pages and well I can’t ell you more without giving away what this book is about. It would have been an amazing book if you wouldn’t see what is coming next. Still I loved this book.

The Quick is a gothic novel set in Victorian Great Britain. The book begins slowly and is very much in the style of its 1800′s time setting. James Norbury who is the protagonist of the first 100 pages will also remain an important character throughout the entire book. He and his sister Charlotte were raised as orphans in an crumbling estate in North England, Yorkshire. After leaving his childhood home to attend college, he graduated from Oxford and took a room in London. There he fell in love with his roommate a much more outgoing person named Christopher. James has aspirations to become a poet or a play writer, but that dream never becomes reality when one night changed his life. This night Christopher dies and James vanishes mysteriously, so Charlotte who is much worried about him, travels to London to find out what happened. What she finds in London will forever change her life. She will find unknown strength and heartbreak beyond the imagination. She will meet fear in the dark alleys and basements of London. And that fear will follow her all the rest of her days.

There’s a great cast of characters introduced here and some are not fully developed and difficult to distinguish between without carefully reading. There you go. That’s all you need to know, except that you must be prepared for all the out-of-the-ordinary people, some of them totally creepy-scary, some of them quite admirable, that Charlotte meets up with while looking for James.

For me The Quick is an exciting, emotional and fast-paced story. I love to read Victorian Gothic and this was just an excellent read. It reminded me of some popular classics (can’t tell you which or you would know in which direction this is going) and it can proudly keep up with those classics. Lauren Owen describes vividly of the dark corners and utter coldness of the story and she expresses the sentiment of the late 1800′s masterfully. ( )
  BookishSolace | Mar 18, 2016 |
I honestly found myself enjoying this book more than I expected, especially after the "reveal" came to play (that is, if it was known in the summary, there's a chance I may not have picked it up due to my judgmental, selective nature), and I was pretty pleased with story. There were dynamics to the story that you wouldn't commonly come across, such as the odd characters with unusual pasts were kept to the side while the normal (boring) characters stayed up front and the twist was much more than just "the twist."

I like how it was written, I enjoyed excerpts from many different characters and seeing all the points of views, I enjoyed the more completed aspect of the story, and... I did like the ending. I think many would be upset, but I'm glad to see someone take a chance at this kind of ending. It beats the fluffy, save the damsel crap you see everywhere else... Take the chance at something different for once!

It is a lengthy read, but I felt like I got through it fairly quickly. I probably wouldn't recommend this to everyone due to some factors, but if you enjoy the Victorian London, multi POVs, a variety of characters, and don't mind something that has been done before, I would give it a shot. ( )
  ShayLRoss | Mar 16, 2016 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0812993276, Hardcover)

An astonishing debut, a novel of epic scope and suspense that conjures up all the magic and menace of Victorian London
 
London, 1892: James Norbury is a shy would-be poet, newly down from Oxford and confounded by the sinister, labyrinthine city at his doorstep. Taking up lodging with a dissolute young aristocrat, he is introduced to the drawing-rooms of high society and finds love in an unexpected quarter. On the cusp of achieving a happiness long denied to him, he vanishes without a trace. In Yorkshire, his sister, Charlotte—only in her twenties but already resigned to life as a rural spinster—sets out to find her brother. Her search for answers leads her to one of the country’s preeminent and mysterious institutions: The Aegolius Club, whose members include the richest, most ambitious men in England. Trying to save James—and herself—from the club’s designs, Charlotte uncovers a secret world at the city’s margins populated by unforgettable characters: a female ropewalker turned vigilante, a street urchin with a deadly secret, and the chilling “Doctor Knife.”
 
In her first novel, Lauren Owen has created an utterly beguiling fantastical world.  As emotionally involving as it is suspenseful, The Quick will establish her as one of contemporary fiction’s most dazzling talents.
 
Advance praise for The Quick
 
“A sly and glittering addition to the literature of the macabre . . . As soon as you have breathed with relief, much worse horrors begin. It’s a skilled, assured performance, and it’s hard to believe it is a first novel.”—Hilary Mantel, bestselling author of Wolf Hall and Bring Up the Bodies
 
“A suspenseful, gloriously atmospheric first novel, and a feast of gothic storytelling that is impossible to resist.”—Kate Atkinson, bestselling author of Life After Life and Case Histories
 
“Ambitious, elegant, atmospheric, and often deeply poignant, The Quick is a seamless blend of Victorian London and rich imagination. This is a book to savor.”—Tana French, bestselling author of In the Woods and Broken Harbor

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:09:28 -0400)

In London of 1892, "James Norbury is a shy would-be poet, newly down from Oxford and confounded by the sinister, labyrinthine city at his doorstep. Taking up lodging with a dissolute young aristocrat, he is introduced to the drawing rooms of high society and finds love in an unexpected quarter. On the cusp of achieving a happiness long denied to him, he vanishes without a trace. In Yorkshire, his sister Charlotte--only in her twenties but already resigned to life as a rural spinster--sets out to find her brother"--… (more)

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