Historical Fiction VBT Review: The Flower Reader by Elizabeth Loupas

by

The Flower Reader
Elizabeth Loupas
NAL Trade
April 3, 2012
448 pages
Amazon|BN
provided by publisher
RBM’s Disclaimer
5/5 Books

In the sweeping new novel from the author of The Second Duchess, dangerous secrets lead a passionate young woman into a maze of murder and conspiracy as Mary, Queen of Scots, comes home to reign in a treacherously divided Scotland….

With her dying breath, Mary of Guise entrusts a silver casket to Rinette Leslie of Granmuir, who possesses the ancient gift of floromancy. Inside the casket, and meant only for the young Mary, Queen of Scots, are papers the old queen has painstakingly collected—the darkest secrets of every Scottish lord and explosive private prophecies prepared by Nostradamus. Rinette risks her life to keep the casket safe, but she makes a fatal mistake: she shows it to her beloved young husband. On the very day the young queen comes home, Rinette’s husband is brutally assassinated.

Devastated, Rinette demands justice from the queen before she will surrender the casket. Amid glittering masques and opulent weddings, courtly intrigues and Highland rebellions, the queen’s agents and Rinette herself search for the shadowy assassin. They are surrounded by ruthless men from all over Europe who will do anything to force Rinette to give up the casket—threatening her life, stripping her of her beloved castle by the sea, forcing her to marry a man she hates, and driving her from the man she has reluctantly grown to love. In the end, the flowers are all she can trust—and only the flowers will lead her safely home to Granmuir.

Author Elizabeth Loupas

About The Author:
Elizabeth Loupas lives near the Elm Fork of the Trinity River, halfway between Dallas and Fort Worth, Texas. She is presently a novelist, freelance writer and amateur historian. In other times and other places she has been a radio network vice president, a reference librarian, a business-to-business magazine editor, and a tutor in English literature.

One of her passions is the art and poetry of the Pre-Raphaelites. This led her to the Rossettis and the Brownings, and the project nearest and dearest to her heart–her novel THE SECOND DUCHESS, based on Robert Browning’s poem “My Last Duchess.”

She hates housework, cold weather, and wearing shoes. She loves animals, gardens, and popcorn. Not surprisingly she lives in a state of happy barefoot chaos with her delightful and faintly bemused husband (the Broadcasting Legend), her herb garden, her popcorn popper, and two beagles.

Connect With The Author:
Website | Facebook | Twitter

My Review:
I love historical fiction books, especially ones that are filled with intriguing suspense and characters that work their way to your hearts from the start. Elizabeth Loupas is an author who created a book just like that and then so much more, besides. I truly loved this book!

Rinette Leslie was asked by Mary of Guise to take a casket, hold it and hide it, then give it to the returning Mary Queen of Scots. Rinette agrees to this promise, but doesn’t adhere to it. Instead, she returns home, casket in tow. Once there, she’s ready to marry her childhood love and be with her family. Showing the casket to her husband, after promising to hide until Mary Queen of Scots returns, Rinette Leslie breaks the promise.

Once she does that, the mystery and suspense of the courts and history rises in full swing. Rinette’s beloved is murdered, and Rinette reads horrible things in “flowers” of Mary Queen of Scots. Danger and intriguing suspense keep the reader on the edge of their seat with this amazingly written novel.

Elizabeth Loupas kept me hooked from start to finish. I was never lost and always in the center of the story. I loved that feeling. More often than not, I found myself feeling as if I could read people with the “flowers” that were there. I could feel myself in the middle of the suspense, helping Rinette and Nicolas De Clerac to find the answers. When secrets arise that leave Rinette hurt and questioning her past, it hits the reader with a force of roller coaster twists!

I definitely recommend this with 5 Books. It’s filled with so much more than just historical elements and flower reading. It’s got romance, suspense and fantastically created characters that become friends. I can’t wait to read more work by this fantastic author!!!!

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2 Comments

  • Reply Maria D.

    Great review! This sounds like a really interesting historical/suspense/romance and I love the fact that Mary of Guise is one of the characters (lately I’ve been hooked on watching Elizabeth with Kate Blanchett). Thanks for sharing.

    3 May, 2012 at 10:37 am
  • Reply Elizabeth Loupas

    Hi, Molly… thank you so much for this wonderful review! I’m so glad you enjoyed the book.

    Maria, I have to warn you that Mary of Guise is only in the first chapter… although I’d love to write at least a short story “prequel” about Mary of Guise making a visit to Granmuir and taking the young Rinette back to court with her. So much emotion and such a wonderful chance to see some of the beginning of Rinette’s floromancy.

    Molly, thank you again for your lovely review.

    6 May, 2012 at 3:42 pm
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