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The Serpent in the Garden

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The Serpent in the Garden Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

She opened the shagreen box. Couched in gray silk was an emerald necklace, one he had not seen for twenty years. The stones were just as he recalled them: a dozen or more, baguette cut and set in gold links, with a single ruby at the center. Flashes of verdigris, orpiment, and Prussian blue sparkled in the candlelight. The form of this necklace was as disturbing as ever. It had nearly cost him his life.

It is the summer of 1765. The renowned and exquisitely dressed portrait painter Joshua Pope accepts a commission to paint the wedding portrait of Herbert Bentnick and his fiancée, Sabine Mercer, to whom Bentnick has become engaged less than a year after the death of his first wife. Joshua has barely begun the portrait when a man's body is found in the conservatory. A few days later, Sabine's emerald necklace disappears, and Bentnick accuses Joshua of theft. The painter is suddenly fighting not only for his reputation but for his life. With a sure understanding of period detail and character, Janet Gleeson creates a richly nuanced tale of greed and revenge that plays out in the refined landscapes and dark streets of eighteenth-century London.

Review:

"British author Gleeson's tepid second historical mystery follows the same fundamental formula as 2003's The Grenadillo Box: a skilled craftsman (there a cabinetmaker, here a portraitist) is ensconced at the estate of a wealthy British family when a brutal murder occurs. In both cases, the tradesman is charged with finding the culprit. Joshua Pope is commissioned to paint a wedding portrait of Herbert Bentnick and his betrothed, the luminous Sabine Mercier. During the sittings, Sabine insists on wearing an unusual emerald necklace fashioned into the shape of a serpent, even though it's reputed to bring disaster to any who wear it. When a stranger is found dead in the conservatory and the necklace disappears, Joshua, suspected of the theft, is forced to investigate. He stumbles about in a sea of red herrings, eventually uncovering the truth some chapters after many readers have done so. The author's depiction of Georgian England rings true in every lush detail. But the crucial elements that define a mystery — plot, character, passion — never rise above the ordinary. Indeed, the novel puts one in mind of an 18th-century quadrille, full of elaborate turns and repetitious step sequences — beautiful, stately, mannered, but lacking in depth. Agent, Christopher Little. (Feb. 22)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)

Synopsis:

She opened the shagreen box. Couched in gray silk was an emerald necklace, one he had not seen for twenty years. The stones were just as he recalled them: a dozen or more, baguette cut and set in gold links, with a single ruby at the center. Flashes of verdigris, orpiment, and Prussian blue sparkled in the candlelight. The form of this necklace was as disturbing as ever. It had nearly cost him his life.

It is the summer of 1765. The renowned and exquisitely dressed portrait painter Joshua Pope accepts a commission to paint the wedding portrait of Herbert Bentnick and his fianc

About the Author

Janet Gleeson is the author of the bestseller The Arcanum, as well as Millionaire, The Grenadillo Box, and The Serpent in the Garden. She lives with her family in Dorset.

Product Details

ISBN:
9780743260053
Author:
Gleeson, Janet
Publisher:
Simon & Schuster
Subject:
Literary
Subject:
Historical - General
Subject:
Gardens
Subject:
Suspense
Subject:
Country homes
Subject:
General Fiction
Subject:
Mystery fiction
Subject:
England
Subject:
Literature-A to Z
Copyright:
Edition Description:
B102
Publication Date:
February 2005
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Pages:
352
Dimensions:
8.44 x 5.5 in 15.89 oz

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Related Subjects

Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z
Fiction and Poetry » Popular Fiction » Suspense
Health and Self-Help » Health and Medicine » General
Health and Self-Help » Health and Medicine » General Medicine
Health and Self-Help » Self-Help » Self Esteem

The Serpent in the Garden Used Mass Market
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$5.95 In Stock
Product details 352 pages Simon & Schuster - English 9780743260053 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "British author Gleeson's tepid second historical mystery follows the same fundamental formula as 2003's The Grenadillo Box: a skilled craftsman (there a cabinetmaker, here a portraitist) is ensconced at the estate of a wealthy British family when a brutal murder occurs. In both cases, the tradesman is charged with finding the culprit. Joshua Pope is commissioned to paint a wedding portrait of Herbert Bentnick and his betrothed, the luminous Sabine Mercier. During the sittings, Sabine insists on wearing an unusual emerald necklace fashioned into the shape of a serpent, even though it's reputed to bring disaster to any who wear it. When a stranger is found dead in the conservatory and the necklace disappears, Joshua, suspected of the theft, is forced to investigate. He stumbles about in a sea of red herrings, eventually uncovering the truth some chapters after many readers have done so. The author's depiction of Georgian England rings true in every lush detail. But the crucial elements that define a mystery — plot, character, passion — never rise above the ordinary. Indeed, the novel puts one in mind of an 18th-century quadrille, full of elaborate turns and repetitious step sequences — beautiful, stately, mannered, but lacking in depth. Agent, Christopher Little. (Feb. 22)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Synopsis" by , She opened the shagreen box. Couched in gray silk was an emerald necklace, one he had not seen for twenty years. The stones were just as he recalled them: a dozen or more, baguette cut and set in gold links, with a single ruby at the center. Flashes of verdigris, orpiment, and Prussian blue sparkled in the candlelight. The form of this necklace was as disturbing as ever. It had nearly cost him his life.

It is the summer of 1765. The renowned and exquisitely dressed portrait painter Joshua Pope accepts a commission to paint the wedding portrait of Herbert Bentnick and his fianc

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