Wednesday, January 23, 2013

India Black and the Rajah's Ruby by Carol K. Carr

Title: India Black and the Rajah's Ruby
Author: Carol K. Carr

Genre: Fiction (Historical / early 20th Century / London / UK / Sex Worker / Victoriana / Mystery)
Publisher/Publication Date: Berkley (12/31/2012)
Source: NetGalley

Rating: Looved!
Did I finish?: In one night!
One-sentence summary: India Black, a foxy young courtesan, reflects on the circumstances that lead to her being able to afford her own brothel.
Reading Challenges: E-book, Historical Fiction

Do I like the cover?: I like it but I'm rather fond of the covers for all the India Black novels -- even though they commit the cardinal sin of slicing off half her face in this one. (In the other two novels, our model keeps her face!) The gown is so pretty, however, I forgive them...

First line: Having acquired a reputation as one of London's most successful madams, I'm frequently asked by young tarts for advice on plunging into the cutthroat world of brothel ownership.

Buy, Borrow, or Avoid?: Buy, buy, buy -- it's inexpensive and so delightfully fun.

Why did I get this book?: India Black is my literary girlfriend.

Review: It is no secret I adore Carol K. Carr's India Black series. The first book made my top ten of 2010 and the second book was a welcome return to a character I adored.

This is a prequel, of sorts, to the India Black books, set during her days as a prostitute (and not the madam she is in books one, two, and three). About 40 pages long, it details the incident that launched India into her madam-ship, so to speak, and as with the previous India books, has the cheeky humor, droll sexiness, and the brazen escapades I've come to associate with Carr's novels.

For those unfamiliar with this series, while India is a madam, this isn't historical erotica or even really historical romance.  Carr  intimates what India has done, what happens in India's brothel, without being gratuitous, gross, or clinically detailed.  India's profession makes for a wonderfully unique heroine and her world an intriguing, unusual setting for a Victorian mystery series.  While not a 'clean' novel technically, this isn't salacious in the slightest, and if you like Victorian settings, rowdy heroines, and snark married with action, give India a chance.

This e-short is an excellent introduction to India Black and Carr's wonderfully droll writing style if you're unfamiliar with this series; and if you're already a fan, you're going to love this naughty, wicked slice from India's past.

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GIVEAWAY!

I'm thrilled to offer a copy of India Black and the Rajah's Ruby! My gift to one lucky reader! As this is an e-special, it is only available as an e-book. To enter, fill out this brief form. Open to US/international readers, ends 2/1.

12 comments:

  1. Sigh....this series sounds so fun -- yet another series I need to start. Thanks for the rec!

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    1. Joanne -- I feel you on the series TBR thing BUT this one is really worth pushing up to the top -- it is breezy, funny, snarky, sexy, well-written, well-researched -- an escapist delight. India Black is probably a top ten all time favorite character.

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  2. One night? Wow! I've read other great reviews of the India Black books - they sound great!

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    1. It helped it was only 40 pages -- and I couldn't put it down. The series is wonderful -- really such fun.

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  3. Audra--I loved it! And I still thank you for introducing me to India Black (and the amazing Carol K. Carr) in the first place! I can't wait for her India Black and The Shadows of Anarchy, coming in Feb.!

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    1. Dee, that makes me so happy -- I love it when I people I like like each other! I just got my review copy of ...Shadows of Anarchy -- I plan to dig in tonight!!

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  4. I don't know why I have waited so long to grab this one, but sadly, I have. Now you've made me anxious to start the first book, and I will be getting it this weekend. Thanks for your continuing enthusiasm for India. It has me very excited!!

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    1. Heather, I'm so glad you're going to give this series a try -- so much fun -- very good to alternate with heavy, depressing reads!

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  5. Hahaha, added the first book in the series to GR. I have to meet your fictional girlfriend!

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    1. Read it NAOW! It is really super marvelous. That India, what a gal...

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  6. I really enjoyed this one too! This was my first introduction to India Black but I can't wait to read more!

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    1. Colleen, you're in for a treat! I fell in love with India after the first five pages of the first book -- and it's an unending affair! ;)

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