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The Quick by Lauren Owen
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The Quick

by Lauren Owen

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78311117,368 (3.34)132
Recently added byvikzen, legxleg, LindaEdwards, SWade0126, Keri_Thomas, private library, selene1123, ExVivre, tldegray
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Showing 1-5 of 112 (next | show all)
No full plot summary in order to avoid spoilers! This is a British gothic novel that has a very promising beginning and a decent almost-ending, but the middle and the very end were overly long and frustrating. This book begins with the sweet tale of a brother and sister, Charlotte and James, growing up rather neglected at their estate in the country. They really only have each other, until James is sent to Boarding school and Charlotte is left behind with an Aunt. We soon meet up with James who has now graduated from Oxford and decided to give London a try. We are then treated to a beautifully written description of Victorian London and the lifestyles of the young, rather wealthy and aimless young men. Then there is a BIG plot twist that takes the novel in a different direction. New characters are introduced, new parts of the city explored, and yet somehow, when the action should be picking up the pace of the novel seemed to slow to a crawl. James pretty much gets pushed to the background and Charlotte to the forefront. There is so much going on and yet it seems to be take soooo long!

I loved the descriptions in the book, but the pacing was off. The way the author changed the pace of the action made no sense to me, and she often had characters make decisions that were very out of character. I did not like the ending which left much unresolved and seemed to be leaving the door open for a sequel. I think a better editing/advising relationship could have easily pushed the book from 3 to 5 stars. ( )
  Rdra1962 | Aug 1, 2018 |
Siblings, James and Charlotte Norbury, raised in a English mansion, were inseparable as children. After James finishes school as Oxford, he moves to London to establish a career as a poet and rooms with a college friend and bon viveur, Christopher Paige. Christopher introduces James to his brother, who is a member of Aegolius Club, an ancient and secretive London organization whose members comprise males from the English aristocracy. Although membership must be requested, James is involuntarily indoctrinated. When Charlotte fails to hear from his brother, he travels to London to determine his fate. What she discovers is groups of vampires, members of the club and not, which mirrors the social strata of Victorian London.

After reading the blurb on the novel's dust jacket flap and read the praises from Kate Atkinson, Hilary Mantel, and Tana French, authors I have read and enjoyed, I thought this book was worth a read. Unfortunately, I found the writing as arcane as the plot. Too many characters were introduced with little description for me to visualize and separate from the others. After awhile, I found myself turning pages with little understanding regarding what was occurring. I believe that this author's debut novel could have benefited from better editing. ( )
  John_Warner | Dec 21, 2017 |
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 |
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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)

"Lauren Owen's thrilling first novel introduces an utterly beguiling world. London, 1893: 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 pre-eminent 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 rope walker turned vigilante, a street urchin with a deadly secret, and the chilling "Dr. Knife." As emotionally involving as it is suspenseful, The Quick will establish its young author as one of contemporary fiction's most dazzling talents" --… (more)

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