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These Vicious Masks Tarun Shanker & Kelly Zekas

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The only thing more dangerous than a gentleman with deadly superpowers is falling in love with one.

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Full Description

Evelyn has no interest in marriage and even the dashing Mr. Kent can't inspire her to give in to society's expectations. She'd much rather assist her beloved sister Rose in her radical quest to become a doctor. Then she meets Sebastian Braddock. The reclusive gentleman is vexing, annoyingly attractive, and quite possibly mad—and his interest in Rose is galling. So when Rose disappears, Sebastian is immediately suspect.

Yet Sebastian's strange tales of special powers soon prove to be true, and Evelyn learns that Rose's kidnappers have much worse in mind for her than simply ruining her reputation. Surrounded by secrets, lies, and unprecedented danger, Evelyn has no choice but to trust Sebastian, yet she can't help but worry that his secrets are the most dangerous of all…

Excerpt

At a loss, I burrowed further into the shallow space, mind whirring angrily. This was entirely his fault. We were trapped. Even if I was well–disguised, once Mr. Kent determined Mr. Braddock's identity and started a conversation with us, it would be easy to deduce mine.

A warm, ragged breath disturbed the hairs on my forehead and my blood began pricking as I realized where exactly I had retreated: right into Mr. Braddock. I panicked, my mind sending clumsy directions to my limbs that moved of their own accord. Before I understood anything, a rough, large hand brushed my chin, my face tipped upwards and his mouth caught mine. Whatever odd sensation had thrummed between us before was just the stroke of a violin bow to this clash of an orchestra. I felt the world pass between our lips, tasting champagne, hunger and something indefinably darker, while his hand ignited sparks down my cheek to the nape of my neck. He wrapped an arm around my waist, pulling me closer, forcing that elusive essence to run deeper than my skin, deeper than my veins, till my very bones vibrated.

I stumbled back. What in heaven's name was he thinking?

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Purchase Info

Paperback: $9.99
ISBN 9781250073891

E-book: $7.12
ISBN 9781250078025

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Praise

"Striking a strong balance between romance and mystery, this novel captures society’s rules just as well as it does the unbelievable powers of the main characters. Readers will easily be swept up in its fast pace and sympathetic narrator, who is filled with both self-doubt and resolve to do anything to protect those she loves. This is a perfect pick for someone who wants a little magic in their Victorian novels, and its combination of historical fiction and mysticism will remind readers of Libba Bray’s Gemma Doyle trilogy." —Booklist

"This tale has brisk pacing, plenty of action, and a heroine with more than her fair share of girl-power confidence." —School Library Journal

"These Vicious Masks was every bit as good as I hoped! Intriguing and gorgeous from start to finish! I highly, HIGHLY recommend this engaging tale of a 19th century England society, complicated by mysterious abilities, kidnapping and a swoony, Darcy-like love interest." —The Forest of Words and Pages

"One of those books that you can’t help but adore from the moment you begin reading. ... simply tons of fun!" —Books & Cleverness

"This is a great read, compelling and addictive. Well written and great character development you cannot stop reading. I was spellbound from the beginning and I thoroughly enjoyed the journey!" –Sue Speakman, Swoon Reader

"My favorite thing about this book is the dialogue. The authors intricately composed period-style phrasing with a modern-day wit that is incredibly nuanced and thoughtful—very well done. I was successfully transported by the characters in a way that rivaled my indulgence in Harry Potterland." –Cayla O'Connell, Swoon Reader

"So much fun! Like a story by one of the Bronte sisters or Jane Austen, except the characters are much more self-aware and genre-savvy." —Duncan Pflaster, Swoon Reader

"I need book two!! Where is book two?? This sucked me in right away (it was a terrible idea to start reading on a break at work – I could barely bring myself to go back to work) and kept me engaged the whole way through. Some really great characters. (Also any book that mentions self-defenestration wins). But seriously, can I read book two now??" –Erin Keskeny, Swoon Reader

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78 comments on "These Vicious Masks"

SMcSaltson on Oct. 25, 2016, 2:21 p.m. said:

SMcSaltson


Cannot WIAT to read this

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Amberly Mae on Sept. 29, 2016, 2:52 a.m. said:

Amberly Mae


It is wonderfully compelling from the beginning!!! A clever and engaging story!!!

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Angie Taylor on Feb. 9, 2016, 11:52 a.m. said:

Angie Taylor


I just ordered my copy! I'm excited to read this. :-)

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Isabella Reinhardt on Sept. 30, 2014, 5:21 p.m. said:

Isabella Reinhardt


What an exciting book! I loved the love/hate relationship between the main characters

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Tarun Shanker & Kelly Zekas on Oct. 6, 2014, 12:55 p.m. said:

Tarun Shanker & Kelly Zekas


Thank you so much, Isabella! We are thrilled you enjoyed reading it! - Kelly

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Kate Evangelista on Oct. 3, 2014, 9:10 p.m. said:

Kate Evangelista


I love cupcakes too! Okay, so started reading. First off, I love the cover. It's reminiscent of The Girl with the Pearl Necklace, or something like that. I forget the exact title. ;-)

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Tarun Shanker & Kelly Zekas on Oct. 6, 2014, 11:57 a.m. said:

Tarun Shanker & Kelly Zekas


Yay for cupcakes! Thanks so much – read more over the weekend and can’t wait to finish it! It’s crazy, though, how much a good cover can do, right? :-) - Kelly

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Kate Evangelista on Oct. 7, 2014, 11:14 a.m. said:

Kate Evangelista


Definitely. Ironic how in the world of books, judging a book by it's cover is usually the case. *laughs*

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Kate Evangelista on Oct. 7, 2014, 11:39 a.m. said:

Kate Evangelista


Welcome to the club of the wayward page breaks. I don't know what happened. One minute they were there and the next they went "poof." *shakes head*

Anyway, awesome opening sentence. Way to get the chill going. Seriously, goose bumps. And it set the tone for the rest of the story.

In terms of the time period, I think you need to establish it earlier on in the novel. Besides reading the novel's description, it took too long for the readers to realize the story is taking place in 1880. Plunge them right away into the story by strengthening the world building. A good example of this is The Bone Season by Samantha Shannon (although, I think it was an example of a little too much world building). The moment you hit that sweet spot of just the right amount of description and information to feed your readers, you'll have one powerhouse of a novel.

We need more stories like yours. Thank you so much for sharing this with us.

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Tarun Shanker & Kelly Zekas on Oct. 8, 2014, 9:58 a.m. said:

Tarun Shanker & Kelly Zekas


Kate! Thank you so much for your insights. Seriously, has ANYONE figured out the tabbing/page breaking issues? Oy vey.

Anyway, thank you, thank you. Will definitely look at ways to add in more time/place world building without going crazy. I know exactly what you mean about the sweet spot - can't go too nuts with it either.

Should be finished soon with Warning! and can't wait to comment/rate. Thanks again!

-Kelly

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