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Sepulchre. by Kate. Mosse
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Sepulchre. (original 2007; edition 2009)

by Kate. Mosse

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1,905713,597 (3.42)96
Member:Gracelesslady
Title:Sepulchre.
Authors:Kate. Mosse
Info:Berkley Books (2009), Edition: 1st PAPERBACK, Paperback
Collections:Your library
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Sepulchre by Kate Mosse (2007)

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English (55)  French (3)  Dutch (3)  Finnish (3)  Norwegian (2)  Italian (1)  Danish (1)  Spanish (1)  German (1)  Tagalog (1)  All languages (71)
Showing 1-5 of 55 (next | show all)
I enjoyed reading Kate Mosse's Laybrinth, and thought I would try the next in the series, Sepulchre. I enjoy the historical fiction/fantasy as well as conspiracy novels, so this volume was a good fit. The story bounces back and froth from the 1890s to 2007 wit a variety of characters all centered around a household in the south of France. It wasn't until about 400 pages in that I made the connection of characters from Sepulchre to Laybrinth (I had had this nagging feeling that I had run across the names previously). My only real complaint with the novel is that it was quite obvious that there was going to be a tie between the character set a century apart - the only question was regarding exactly how they were going to be related. Even though I saw "the end coming", it was still an enjoyable read, waiting in anticipation for the details to unfold. Very good, light, entertaining reading. ( )
  jsoos | Dec 18, 2014 |
Review from my blog. Other reviews available now!

I picked up loads of books in my chairty shop run, so it’s probably going to be older books for a bit. Sepulchre is Kate Mosse’s second book and is loosely connected to her first, Labyrinth.

Hmmm. Hmmmmmmmm. I enjoyed Labyrinth, and the shorter piece she did (Winter Ghosts), but something became very clear to me as I read Sepulchre. While Kate Mosse does her research and knows a great deal about the history of this region, she is not that good a writer.

It’s not that she can’t tell a good stroy (even if it is roughly the same story in every book of hers I’ve read) it’s that the tools she uses to tell the story are blunt and ineffective. There is an over-reliance on cliche, a painful amount of repetition and a rather irritating tendency to go for bland telling. This wouldn’t bother me too much (these books are a guilty pleasure for me) if it weren’t so obvious that’s she’s in love with her own prose.

It’s hard to discuss this without spoilers, but there is a point where a character repeats the first paragraph of the book to an audience, and the audience applauds wildly. I’ve known few audiences at book readings to be that enthusiastic unless the author is well-known – book readings tend to be quiet affairs, often with only half a dozen people present. The idea of wild applause is ridiculous. So we’re encouraged to believe it is the quality of the prose that gets this reaction – except that the prose is choppy, awkward, melodramatic and turgid.

Mosse writes best when she isn’t trying so hard to be ‘writerly’. Her descriptions of the countrysides are very effective in their simplicity, and she is excellent at writing emotion. It’s when she tries to be poetic that she becomes stilted and almost uncomfortable to read.

Still, the plot is tight and entertaining, the characters are vivid and appealing, and the background is historically accurate. It could be a lot worse, and I have read books that are. 3 stars. ( )
  Violetthedwarf | Oct 23, 2014 |
Review from my blog. Other reviews available now!

I picked up loads of books in my chairty shop run, so it’s probably going to be older books for a bit. Sepulchre is Kate Mosse’s second book and is loosely connected to her first, Labyrinth.

Hmmm. Hmmmmmmmm. I enjoyed Labyrinth, and the shorter piece she did (Winter Ghosts), but something became very clear to me as I read Sepulchre. While Kate Mosse does her research and knows a great deal about the history of this region, she is not that good a writer.

It’s not that she can’t tell a good stroy (even if it is roughly the same story in every book of hers I’ve read) it’s that the tools she uses to tell the story are blunt and ineffective. There is an over-reliance on cliche, a painful amount of repetition and a rather irritating tendency to go for bland telling. This wouldn’t bother me too much (these books are a guilty pleasure for me) if it weren’t so obvious that’s she’s in love with her own prose.

It’s hard to discuss this without spoilers, but there is a point where a character repeats the first paragraph of the book to an audience, and the audience applauds wildly. I’ve known few audiences at book readings to be that enthusiastic unless the author is well-known – book readings tend to be quiet affairs, often with only half a dozen people present. The idea of wild applause is ridiculous. So we’re encouraged to believe it is the quality of the prose that gets this reaction – except that the prose is choppy, awkward, melodramatic and turgid.

Mosse writes best when she isn’t trying so hard to be ‘writerly’. Her descriptions of the countrysides are very effective in their simplicity, and she is excellent at writing emotion. It’s when she tries to be poetic that she becomes stilted and almost uncomfortable to read.

Still, the plot is tight and entertaining, the characters are vivid and appealing, and the background is historically accurate. It could be a lot worse, and I have read books that are. 3 stars. ( )
  Violetthedwarf | Oct 23, 2014 |
A couple of years ago I read Mosse's previous book Labyrinth which quite frankly left me markedly underwhelmed (I felt that it was a poor rip off Dan Brown's Da Vinci Code which incidentally I personally think,despite the millions made by the author out of it,was over-hyped clap-trap. So it was with some trepidation that I approached this book,especially given that it is over 700 pages long,however it had cost me nothing so felt it only right to at least give it a go. Unfortunately my initial thoughts proved correct. It just wasn't that impressed.

Firstly the so called heroine Leonie was just plain annoying.She was 17 years old,wanted to be treated as an adult but acted totally the opposite having childish tantrums when chastised by her brother and things didn't go her way. She was supposedly a bit of a bookworm who grew up in suburban Paris but seemed ignorant of the world about her and in the end I found it hard to care anything about what happened to her. Personally I felt that Isolde's back story had more to offer. Then there is the devilish 'villain' Constant who despite doing or at least ordering some pretty despicable acts ends up two dimensional,a mere syphilitic psychopath.

However my main complaint with the book was that it was just far too long and chock full of superfluous nonsense. For instance what did Meredith's so called research into Debussy really add to the story? Would it not have been simpler just to have had her checking out her long lost family origins in France? After all from the Coda it seems that the information was reasonably available even in 2007.Then there is the question of the Tarot cards,a relatively interesting diversion but again,for me,added little to the overall plot.However my real complaint was the over-zealous use of details in the description of not just the countryside about but also the clothing that each character was wearing and even what they were eating.Then there were the un-interpreted French phrases that cropped up at seemingly random intervals.I can only assume that the author was getting the advance for her next book from the French tourist board and that her editor was on holiday when she finished the manuscript.This cloying attention to detail stunted the flow of the plot and made the author seem as she was trying too hard to prove that she'd down her research.Either that or she was being paid by the page. This book could have been about 200 pages shorter and not lost anything IMHO.

That said I not really into all this conspiracy theory mumbo jumbo and did manage to finish the book so not the worst book I've ever read but certainly a long way from the best and I won't be dashing to the book store to hunt out the author's further offerings in the morning. ( )
  PilgrimJess | Oct 23, 2014 |
I love stories like this one - stories told over centuries, using common places, families, or even objects. When I read Kate Mosse's Labyrinth a couple of years ago I really enjoyed it, so I was excited to get my hands on Sepulchre. Kate Mosse is a master at creating a haunting, atmospheric novel and this was no exception.

Sepulchre is not for everyone. This is a dense peice of historical fiction, not at all like the fluffier HF that seems to have flooded the book market in the last few years. The complexities of plot and characterization in combination with the extensive descriptions in Sepulchre make for a somewhat arduous read. That was no detraction for me however, I was completely absorbed from page one.

I highly recommend Sepulchre for fans of historical fiction. The writing is top-notch and the story is entertaining - a combo that seems to be increasingly difficult to find in HF these days. Sepulchre is an excellent read. ( )
  susanbevans | Jul 1, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 55 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (22 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Kate Mosseprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Peters, DonadaNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
L'âme d'autrui est une forêt obscure où il faut marcher avec précaution.
The soul of another is a dark forest in which one must tread carefully.
Letter, 1891
Claude Debussy
The true Tarot is symbolism; it speaks no other language and offers no other signs.

The Pictorial Key to the Tarot, 1910
Arthur Edward Waite
Dedication
To my wonderful mother, Barbara Mosse,

for that first piano




And, as ever, my beloved Greg —

for all things present, past and yet to come
First words
This story begins in a city of bones.
Quotations
Information from the Dutch Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to your language.
L' âme d'autrui une forêt obscure où ik faut marcher avec précaution.
De ziel van een ander is als een donker bos waar je voorzichtig moet lopen.
Brief, 1891 Claude Debussy
Het echte Tarot is symbolisch: het spreekt geen andere taal en biedt geen ander tekens.
The Pictorial Key to the Tarot, 1910
Arthur Edward Waite
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
Please distinguish between Kate Mosse's 2007 novel, Sepulchre, and James Herbert's 1986 novel of the same title. Thank you.
Publisher's editors
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Information from the Dutch Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to your language.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0399154671, Hardcover)

1891. Seventeen-year-old Leonie Vernier and her brother abandon Paris for the sanctuary of their aunt's isolated country house near Carcassonne, the Domaine de la Cade. But in the nearby woods, Leonie stumbles across a ruined sepulchre - and a timeless mystery whose traces are written in blood. 2007. Meredith Martin arrives at the Domaine de la Cade as part of her research for a biography she's writing. But Meredith is also seeking the key to her own complex legacy and soon becomes immersed in the story of a tragic love, a missing girl, a unique deck of tarot cards, an unquiet soul and the strange events of one cataclysmic night more than a century ago...

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:55:13 -0400)

(see all 3 descriptions)

The stories of two women separated by more than a century are brought together by a series of visions that are related to the tarot and a small church, known as a Sepulchre in the grounds of the Domaine de la Cade.

(summary from another edition)

» see all 7 descriptions

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