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More copies of this ISBN

Other titles in the St. Croix Chronicles series:

Tarnished: The St. Croix Chronicles

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Tarnished: The St. Croix Chronicles Cover

ISBN13: 9780062127648
ISBN10: 0062127640
Condition: Standard
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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

“A wickedly wonderful storyteller.”
 —Jocelynn Drake

“A brilliant new voice in paranormal romance.”
—Christina Dodd

Author Karina Cooper enthralls with her stunning new series, The St. Croix Chronicles. Cooper, whose haunting Dark Mission novels set a new standard for paranormal romance, carries readers into the shadows of a very different Victorian London, where science skirts the line between magic and mechanics. A magnificent talent writing in the vein of such paranormal and urban fantasy superstars as J.R. Ward, Jeaniene Frost, Gail Carriger, and Meljean Brook, Cooper introduces readers to a truly remarkable heroine: Cherry St. Croix. Debutante by day and bounty hunter by night, Cherry makes a truly smashing debut in Tarnished, as she trawls the seedy underbelly of an alternate London in search of a killer…and finds herself at odds with the dangerous—and dangerously handsome—criminal kingpin, Micajah Hawke, ruler of the Midnight Menagerie.

Review:

"Switching gears from the postapocalyptic setting of her Dark Mission series (All Things Wicked, etc.), Cooper's first St. Croix Chronicles steampunk urban fantasy brings readers to affluent Victorian London neighborhoods elevated on steel beams to escape the pollution of the industrialized underbelly. Cherry St. Croix works as a 'collector,' disguising herself and descending via steam-powered sky ferries to the dangerous docks and pleasure gardens, where she captures thieves, miscreants, and the occasional murderer in exchange for bounties to fuel her opium addiction. Aloft, she struggles to play the role she was born into: the eccentric but socially acceptable daughter of an insane scientist. When Cherry tries to catch a serial killer, she puts herself in even more danger than usual. Readers expecting romance in an Avon title will be disappointed; Cooper's urban fantasy lays the groundwork for future romantic interludes but focuses more on Cherry's attempts to control her addiction and stay alive. Agent: Laura Bradford, Bradford Literary Agency. (July)" Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

Synopsis:

My name is Cherry St. Croix. Society would claim that I am a well-heeled miss with an unfortunate familial reputation. They've no idea of the truth of it. In my secret world, I hunt down vagrants, thieves . . . and now, a murderer. For a monster stalks London's streets, leaving a trail of mystery and murder below the fog.

Eager for coin to fuel my infatuations, I must decide where my attentions will turn: to my daylight world, where my scientific mind sets me apart from respectable Society, or to the compelling domain of London below. Each has a man who has claimed my time as his—for good or for ill. Though as the corpses pile, and the treacherous waters of Society gossip churn, I am learning that each also has its dangers. One choice will see me cast from polite company . . . the other might just see me dead.

About the Author

Born from the genetic mash-up of lesser royalty, storytellers, wanderers and dreamers, Karina Cooper was destined to be a creative genius. As a child, she moved all over the country like some kind of waifish blonde gypsy and learned how to adapt to the new cultures her family settled in. When she (finally) grew up, she skipped the whole genius part and fell in love with writing Paranormal Romance because, really, who doesn't love hot men and a happy ending?

When she isn't writing about things that go bump in the night, Karina designs Steampunk and neo-Victorian couture for gentleman hobbyists and ladies of questionable reputation. She lives in the beautiful Pacific Northwest with a husband, three cats, one rabbit and a passel of adopted gamer geeks.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 3 comments:

emmejo, May 2, 2013 (view all comments by emmejo)
On the surface Cherry St. Croix looks like any other wealthy young lady, but the truth is that she is working as a bounty hunter to earn money for the drugs she has been addicted to for years. Keeping her two lives separated becomes even more difficult when she takes a job catching a murderer who has been killing girls and harvesting their organs. She ends up tangled with scientists, prostitutes, circus acts, and two attractive and dangerous men, one from her public, courtly world and the other from the criminal, supernatural places her job takes her.

This is a steampunky mystery crossed with a paranormal romance. That's a lot of ground to cover and it quickly becomes clear the author ended up with more than she could handle. The plot staggers and becomes obstructed by hoards of needless, distracting little sub-plots as the pacing leaps about, unable to keep steady enough to keep you engaged and collapsing towards the end into a sad hodgepodge.

The characters are all fairly stock, with few attributes that are unexpected enough to make you wonder what they will do. Cherry is an odd assortment of traits that don't always come off as convincing and she never seems as smart as she should be for her line of work. Both love interests are essentially pretty cardboard standups and about as useful and engaging.

So why did I rate this fairly high? The worldbuilding was nicely done, and I'm a sucker for a good fantasy world. Most steampunk is either all noble-hearted lords and ladies or glammed up streetwalkers and thieves. It's rare to find a story the features an actual contrast between classes and does a good job explaining how and why that gap is maintained. The tech and science were used sparingly, a personal disappointment as I like my sci-fi on the harder side, but when used they were used well. Cooper also has a gift for creating tone and the feel of the locations she sends the characters into.
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alterlisa, October 16, 2012 (view all comments by alterlisa)
While I love Steampunk, UF, and a good suspense story, this book failed to fill the need. Despite reading the book till the very end (cause of course I had to know the why),it failed to entertain and drag me completely into the story. I often found myself distracted while reading it. There were too many details in the Steampunk world building and the scientific world. The character descriptions often made me NOT care about them though I wanted to. I think this book would have benefited greatly with more romance sprinkled in. It had the potential to be a great recipe but the ingredients just did not jell for me.
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literaladdiction, October 5, 2012 (view all comments by literaladdiction)
Our Review, by LITERAL ADDICTION's Pack Alpha - Michelle L. Olson:

I really enjoyed the first installment of Karina's new ST CROIX CHRONICLES. My exact, though somewhat uncouth, words upon completion of the book were: "Holy dark & twisted Steampunky Franknsteinesque urban fantasy. I like it!!" :)

Steampunk is a delicate blend of Victorian and Industry - think corsets and bustles meet gears, steam engines, and airship pirates. In Tarnished, London is split into two distinct worlds following a sort of pollution apocalypse. There's the lower London, where smog is literally cloying and thievery and darkness abound, and the upper London where the well-to-doers reside, pretending that life `below' never happened. Our heroine, Cherry, lives in both worlds but fits wholly in neither.

As the daughter of a scientist whom people thought mad, she's quite evolved for a Victorian age woman, and yet never fully accepted by society. She loves science and debate, and feels utterly at home with a good reference book or periodical - all of the things that a high born female should not engage in. Her every action is scrutinized by the rest of the upper London elite, and therefore, Cherry finds it necessary to live a dual life. When she's not posing for the rest of the upper London society, she dresses up as a boy and works as a bounty hunter and assassin in lower London while trying to find creative ways to keep herself functioning after an awful childhood left her with an opium addiction that she's unable to shake.

The heart of Tarnished revolves around Cherry's quest to find and apprehend the madman whom killed some of her lower London ladies of the night acquaintances, while trying to keep up her dual personalities and have somewhat of a normal love life.

She is torn between a highborn lad from the Compton family who comes to court her, and her pseudo boss and `Sir of the Night' if you will, the dark and mysterious Micajah Hawke - ruler of the Midnight Menagerie. Like Cherry herself, the two sides of her love life battle between dark and light, upper and lower, proper and scandalous.

As I touched on in my initial comments regarding the book, the murder mystery that Cherry investigates has a lovely Frankensteinesque quality about it and I found myself utterly intrigued.

Tarnished is a compelling tale of myth and reality and covers all the grey ground between light and dark. It was a book I'm not likely to forget any time soon, and I'm excited to see where Karina takes us next with the series.

LITERAL ADDICTION gives Tarnished 4 Skulls.
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Product Details

ISBN:
9780062127648
Subtitle:
The St. Croix Chronicles
Author:
Cooper, Karina
Publisher:
Avon
Subject:
Romance - Paranormal
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Mass Market PB
Publication Date:
20120626
Binding:
Paperback
Language:
English
Pages:
384
Dimensions:
6.75 x 4.1875 x 0.96 in 6.4 oz

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Related Subjects

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Arts and Entertainment » Art » Style and Design
Fiction and Poetry » Romance » Paranormal

Tarnished: The St. Croix Chronicles Used Mass Market
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Product details 384 pages Avon Books - English 9780062127648 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "Switching gears from the postapocalyptic setting of her Dark Mission series (All Things Wicked, etc.), Cooper's first St. Croix Chronicles steampunk urban fantasy brings readers to affluent Victorian London neighborhoods elevated on steel beams to escape the pollution of the industrialized underbelly. Cherry St. Croix works as a 'collector,' disguising herself and descending via steam-powered sky ferries to the dangerous docks and pleasure gardens, where she captures thieves, miscreants, and the occasional murderer in exchange for bounties to fuel her opium addiction. Aloft, she struggles to play the role she was born into: the eccentric but socially acceptable daughter of an insane scientist. When Cherry tries to catch a serial killer, she puts herself in even more danger than usual. Readers expecting romance in an Avon title will be disappointed; Cooper's urban fantasy lays the groundwork for future romantic interludes but focuses more on Cherry's attempts to control her addiction and stay alive. Agent: Laura Bradford, Bradford Literary Agency. (July)" Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
"Synopsis" by , My name is Cherry St. Croix. Society would claim that I am a well-heeled miss with an unfortunate familial reputation. They've no idea of the truth of it. In my secret world, I hunt down vagrants, thieves . . . and now, a murderer. For a monster stalks London's streets, leaving a trail of mystery and murder below the fog.

Eager for coin to fuel my infatuations, I must decide where my attentions will turn: to my daylight world, where my scientific mind sets me apart from respectable Society, or to the compelling domain of London below. Each has a man who has claimed my time as his—for good or for ill. Though as the corpses pile, and the treacherous waters of Society gossip churn, I am learning that each also has its dangers. One choice will see me cast from polite company . . . the other might just see me dead.

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