New York Times bestselling author Deanna Raybourn transports readers to a magical New Year's Eve party in 1914, where two guests will discover the passion of a lifetime in this prequel novella…
Notorious socialite Delilah Drummond won't be deterred by the war. Instead, she decides to throw the event of the year, and she's handing out invitations with an eye for wanton fun and wild abandon.
There is the dashing explorer and archaeologist Gabriel Stark, a man at a crossroads in his life. Brilliant and restless, he's just committed to a secret enterprise that forces him to play a public role very different from the man he truly is.
And then there is the charming if flighty Evangeline Merriweather. Evie has dreamed her whole life of adventure. Little does she know, she's about to get more than she bargained for. Especially after her vivacious Aunt Dove acts as fairy godmother, if a saucy one, providing a scandalous gown and a whisper of jasmine on her skin….
Evie will shake cool Gabriel to his core, but just how far are they willing to take love at first sight?
One seductive night will change Evie forever. Watch for her next adventure, in the City of Jasmine.
Set against the lush, exotic European colonial outposts of the 1920s, New York Times bestselling author Deanna Raybourn delivers the captivating tale of one woman who embarks upon a journey to see the world—and ends up finding intrigue, danger and a love beyond all reason.
Famed aviatrix Evangeline Starke never expected to see her husband, adventurer Gabriel Starke, ever again. They had been a golden couple, enjoying a whirlwind courtship amid the backdrop of a glittering social set in prewar London until his sudden death with the sinking of the Lusitania. Five years later, beginning to embrace life again, Evie embarks upon a flight around the world, collecting fame and admirers along the way. In the midst of her triumphant tour, she is shocked to receive a mysterious—and recent—photograph of Gabriel, which brings her ambitious stunt to a screeching halt.
With her eccentric aunt Dove in tow, Evie tracks the source of the photo to the ancient City of Jasmine, Damascus. There she discovers that nothing is as it seems. Danger lurks at every turn, and at stake is a priceless relic, an artifact once lost to time and so valuable that criminals will stop at nothing to acquire it—even murder. Leaving the jewelled city behind, Evie sets off across the punishing sands of the desert to unearth the truth of Gabriel's disappearance and retrieve a relic straight from the pages of history.
Along the way, Evie must come to terms with the deception that parted her from Gabriel and the passion that will change her destiny forever...
I enjoyed reading these stories so much! They were just so good, so entertaining, so real, that I just had to read more! I loved reading about Evie and Gabriel! They were such an awesome couple, with such a roller coaster!
For some reason, I got into my head that Evie was Ryder's cousin, so throughout Whisper, I wondered why Delilah hadn't recognized Evie in A Spear of Summer Grass. It got to the point that I searched through, and found out that lady's name was Jude, and that I'd gotten on that idea because she had lost her husband during the war, and they hadn't recovered a body, too. But on the other hand, Delilah knows both Evie and Gabriel, and had tried to set them up with other people during the party that they met at, and in return, they borrowed her car. And Evie met Ryder during the war-he taught her how to fly!
So these connected the Lady Julia series to them, because they have a 2 members of a later generation of March's in them, which is excellent! And I read that if Deanna Raybourn had a chance to have another book besides the next one, with Harlequin, before they parted ways, she could've brought in The Dead Travel Fast, and have all of her books in one universe. Oh, well! Since we know that could've been, we can just say that it is!
So there's a lot of crossing and backstabbing about this artefact, The Cross, which apparently holds a bit of the cross that Jesus was crucified on, and has been carried into multitudes of battles by famous leaders. It got to the point that I didn't recognize the German's doctor's love, Anna, or Miss Green as I had to turn the pages back to!
Favourite lines from City of Jasmine: "It was hoarse, but nothing happened apart from a few stray shots being fired at the mouth of the vase. I didn't know if they did it to frighten us or to annoy us, but Gabriel retaliated by singing a selection of truly filthy songs in a variety of languages at the top of his voice." Of course he did! "'If he feeds us, I will willingly be his harem girl.' 'My dear child, if he feeds us, I will be his harem girl.'" That would be weird, seeing as you are a guy! "Excellent. No point in fighting the Third Crusade all over again." Yeah, that would be pretty pointless! "Still, I am a man. And no man wants to think that women discuss such things. We'd never have the courage to face one again. My God, is that really what they talk about?" What's with the double standard? Guys talk about sex when they're only with other guys! "Read all about us. Apparently I've been abducted and you are possibly a sex criminal." Ah, newspapers speculating! "Well, I didn't shoot him. I only shot Gabriel." Which, if you don't have context, sounds horrible! "'I do not quarrel with my wives. 'Because your culture gives you complete authority over them' 'No, because I fond my wives are usually right and it is more harmonious to simply agree with them.'" So very true! "Don't mind Gabriel. He's been in a very bad mood for five years." That's a long time! "I looked down at the relic in my hands. I was a piece of history, the wood that had been part of the most famous execution in all of the world, stained with what might well be the blood of Christ. This relic had passed through the hands of kings and bishops; it had been carried in triumph before armies and witnessed the passing of ages. It was the single holiest artefact in all of Christendom, and it was mine. And without hesitating, I took a deep breath and raised my arm to fling it overboard." Because he means more to her then the relic! So cute!
I just enjoyed both of these so much, Whisper their meeting and marriage, City, 5 years afterwards, when she's though he's been dead for 5 years after she started to divorce him, and the journey they go on, these were such great books, I enjoyed them so much. and I can't wait to read her next book!
Author: Deanna Raybourn
Series: City of Jasmine #0.5, 1
Read: January 31st, February 1st, 2015
Source: Tuebl, Bought/NetGalley
Reason Why: Love her writing, and it's a related novel to A Spear of Summer Grass, and they're Historical Fiction 2015 Books and Prequel & Sequel Challenge 2015 Books!
Publisher: Mira, Harlequin Mira
Published: February 1st 2014, February 25th 2014
Night of Jasmine:
City of Jasmine: