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Heart and Soul by Sarah A. Hoyt
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  romsfuulynn | Apr 28, 2013 |
So-so historical fantasy with a strong romantic focus. There are some good ideas here, but it shares the same problems that quite of lot of examples of this subgenre do (i.e. the course of history has run essentially the same as in our own mundane world, despite being full of MAGIC and DRAGONs, etc). With better overall writing, you can ignore that, but when it's only average, it begins to grate. Add in thin characterisation, a magical system that rewards privilege and is never critiqued for it (those with noble blood have the most magic and the story seems quite happy that they should be in charge), and a rushed and mechanical ending (despite the key elements of the ending actually being set up rather well in advance), and I'd call it average at most. On the plus side, it was a quick and easy read, and I have to think fondly of a book that has enabled me to get through part of my monster backlog so swiftly ;-). ( )
  salimbol | Mar 31, 2013 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0553589687, Mass Market Paperback)

Within the magical realm of a Victorian British Empire that never was, one man embarks on a fantastic mission that dates back to the first true king of Europe and that may determine the fate of the last true emperor of China–and the world.

When Nigel Oldhall hires on to pilot a magic carpetship under the name of Enoch Jones, it seems the perfect way for him to travel without attracting attention.  For the English nobleman has in his possession the two most powerful jewels in the universe.  His mission is to return them to their shrine in deepest Africa, restoring order to the world–and to his life.  But he doesn’t count on being attacked by Chinese pirates–or being held captive by a shape-shifting beauty…
Daughter of the Dragon King, sister of the new True Emperor of All Under Heaven, Red Jade is also on a mission: to reclaim the royal status stolen from her family by invaders. Since their expulsion, they have ruled only a mystical shadow-realm. Now, with the jewels in her sight, Red Jade has the chance to rule all. But she soon finds herself, and Enoch, trapped in a scheme that may cause her to change loyalties–and discover her heart’s true destiny.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:11:20 -0400)

Within the magical realm of a Victorian British Empire that never was, Nigel Oldhall has a mission: to return the two most powerful jewels in the universe to their shrine in deepest Africa, restoring order to the world--and to his life. But he doesn't count on being attacked by Chinese pirates--or being held captive by a shape-shifting beauty.… (more)

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