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The Vesuvius Club by Mark Gatiss
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The Vesuvius Club (2004)

by Mark Gatiss

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Lucifer Box (1)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
1,1083811,361 (3.47)58
  1. 10
    Johannes Cabal the Necromancer by Jonathan L. Howard (SomeGuyInVirginia)
    SomeGuyInVirginia: Agreeably horrific gaspers.
  2. 10
    Never the Bride by Paul Magrs (riverwillow)
  3. 10
    The Parasol Protectorate: Soulless, Changeless, Blameless, Heartless and Timeless by Gail Carriger (Anonymous user)
    Anonymous user: Steampunk mystery. I think Alexia Tarabotti and Lucifer Box would get along very well.
  4. 00
    Scoundrels by Major Victor Cornwall (nessreader)
  5. 00
    The Somnambulist by Jonathan Barnes (SomeGuyInVirginia)
  6. 00
    Aberystwyth Mon Amour by Malcolm Pryce (Aula)
    Aula: Not the same type of hero but same intricate and fantastic cases and subtle humor.
  7. 00
    Blue Heaven by Joe Keenan (SomeGuyInVirginia)
    SomeGuyInVirginia: Camp caper.
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» See also 58 mentions

A weird mix of Edgar Allan Poe and Ian Fleming. Secret agent, orgies, attempts to blow up all of Italy using volcanoes, sexy young women, sexy young men, Victorian adventure. The subtitle is "A bit of fluff." That's about right. ( )
  JanetNoRules | Sep 17, 2018 |
A bisexual and very dandy Edwardian James Bond as written by Conan Doyle and Oscar Wilde. Sadly not as interesting as it sounds. ( )
  Joanna.Oyzon | Apr 17, 2018 |
2.5? Not sure.

Vesuvius Club describes itself as parts Sherlock, Bond, Python, Powers and even Wodehouse and I suppose that's accurate though I'm not exactly knowledgeable in all fandoms (Sherlock being the one I'm most familiar with). If I had to sum it up, it's about a man, Lucifer Box, who is working to get his painting career off the ground while moonlighting as a secret government agency for His Majesty's crown. He's fond of indulging himself, be it in food, drink, drugs, fashion, women or men and ends up tangled in a plot to destroy the world.

Unfortunately, what stands out the most in my memory is the ridiculous character name of Jocelyn Poop. The missing agent is mentioned quite a bit, and while other characters did have funny or odd names like Miss Fullalove, Inspector Flush and Mr. and Mrs. Midsomer Knight, Poop takes the cake. Every time they referred to him, I was taken out of the story because I thought to myself "There is the word poop again." Ugh.

Anyway. The book was alright. Lucifer was a so-so character for me. He's feisty, flirtatious and decadent and his bisexuality added a note of interest, especially given the time period of the book. The plot was ridiculous and while clever, our protagonist had a fair bit of luck - but for me what's where the Wodehouse influence comes along (at least, based on my memory of the one book I've read).

I was mildly entertained, sometimes surprised (that whole part with the orgy...) but in the end, I don't care to continue on with the series and will likely get rid of the book eventually. ( )
  MillieHennessy | Dec 5, 2016 |
I expected more from this book somehow. The writing is witty enough and there are puntastic names aplenty, but for some reason the whole does not equal the sum of its parts.

Gatiss is a good writer (witness his Dr Who episodes and The League of Gentlemen) but this falls into the category of 'Could do Better'. ( )
  David.Manns | Nov 28, 2016 |
Fun read. ( )
  SF_fan_mae | Jan 15, 2016 |
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» Add other authors (1 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Gatiss, Markprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Bass, IanCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Cantoni, Elenasecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Heckmann, Andreassecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Hickman, ClaytonCover illustration conceptsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Jakutienė, Dalė Virginijasecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Dedication
For Ian
My love, my life
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I have always been an appalling judge of character. It is my most beguiling virtue.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0743283945, Paperback)

Meet Lucifer Box: Equal parts James Bond and Sherlock Holmes, with a twist of Monty Python and a dash of Austin Powers, Lucifer has a charming countenance and rapier wit that make him the guest all hostesses must have. And most do.

But few of his conquests know that Lucifer is also His Majesty's most daring secret agent, at home in both London's Imperial grandeur and in its underworld of despicable vice. So when Britain's most prominent scientists begin turning up dead, there is only one man his country can turn to for help.

Following a dinnertime assassination, Lucifer is dispatched to uncover the whereabouts of missing agent Jocelyn Poop. Along the way he will give art lessons, be attacked by a poisonous centipede, bed a few choice specimens, and travel to Italy on business and pleasure. Aided by his henchwoman Delilah; the beautiful, mysterious, and Dutch Miss Bella Pok; his boss, a dwarf who takes meetings in a lavatory; grizzled vulcanologist Emmanuel Quibble; and the impertinent, delicious, right-hand-boy Charlie Jackpot, Lucifer Box deduces and seduces his way from his elegant townhouse at Number 9 Downing Street (somebody has to live there) to the ruined city of Pompeii, to infiltrate a highly dangerous secret society that may hold the fate of the world in its clawlike grip--the Vesuvius Club.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 17:59:31 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

Lucifer Box is the darling of the Edwardian belle monde - society's most fashionable portrait painter is a wit, a dandy, a rake, the guest all hostesses (and not a few hosts) must have. But few know that Lucifer Box is also His Majesty's most accomplished and daring secret agent. And so of course when Britain's most prominent scientists begin turning up dead, there is only one man his country can turn to. Lucifer Box is the most fashionable portrait painter of his day. From his elegant townhouse at Number 9 Downing Street to the sun-bleached hotels of Mentone, life is one long party. What his fashionable circle would never believe is that he is also a secret agent. The critical and commercial autumn hit now between soft covers ... Prepare to be seduced.… (more)

» see all 6 descriptions

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Average: (3.47)
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1 9
1.5 1
2 27
2.5 11
3 92
3.5 46
4 110
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