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A Desperate Fortune #2020

A Desperate Fortune From the bestselling author of The Firebird comes a new exquisitely crafted novel of modern day and historical intrigue For nearly years the mysterious journal of Jacobite exile Mary Dundas has

  • Title: A Desperate Fortune
  • Author: Susanna Kearsley
  • ISBN: 9781451673838
  • Page: 323
  • Format: Paperback
  • A Desperate Fortune By Susanna Kearsley, From the bestselling author of The Firebird, comes a new, exquisitely crafted novel of modern day and historical intrigue.For nearly 300 years, the mysterious journal of Jacobite exile Mary Dundas has lain unread its secrets safe from prying eyes Now, amateur codebreaker Sara Thomas has been hired by a once famous historian to crack the journal s cipher But when she arriFrom the bestselling author of The Firebird, comes a new, exquisitely crafted novel of modern day and historical intrigue.For nearly 300 years, the mysterious journal of Jacobite exile Mary Dundas has lain unread its secrets safe from prying eyes Now, amateur codebreaker Sara Thomas has been hired by a once famous historian to crack the journal s cipher But when she arrives in Paris, Sara finds herself besieged by complications from all sides the journal s reclusive owner, her charming Parisian neighbor, and Mary, whose journal doesn t hold the secrets Sara expects It turns out that Mary Dundas wasn t keeping a record of everyday life, but a first hand account of her part in a dangerous intrigue In the first wintry months of 1732, with a scandal gaining steam in London, driving many into bankruptcy and ruin, the man accused of being at its center is concealed among the Jacobites in Paris, with Mary posing as his sister to aid his disguise When their location is betrayed, they re forced to put a desperate plan in action, heading south along the road to Rome, protected by the enigmatic Highlander Hugh MacPherson.As Mary s tale grows and dire, Sara, too, must carefully choose which turning to take to find the road that will lead her safely home.

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    1. A computer programmer and amateur encryption specialist, Sara Thomas is offered a job breaking the code of a handwritten diary from the eighteenth century The diary was owned by Mary Dundas, the daughter of a Jacobite exile.After her mother died, Mary was sent by her father to live with her aunt and uncle in France At twenty one, her brother comes for her, ostensibly to take her to his home Instead, he involves Mary in a Jacobite intrigue, where she is asked to pose as another man s sister The m [...]

    2. Susanna Kearsley does another of her patented dual timeline novels, this one with computer programmer and amateur cipher breaker Sara, a British woman with Asperger s, staying in France while trying to crack the cipher that Mary Dundas wrote her journal in, during 1732 The story alternates between Sara s first person POV and Mary s unexpected adventures during the Jacobite Rebellion, told in third person Both of them find romance in unexpected places.There were some nice parts to it, like the MC [...]

    3. 3.5 stars I love Susanna Kearsley, and I have really enjoyed almost everything she has written This book feels strongly like a Susanna Kearsley book, but it is a little different than most While it has the duel storyline, the Scottish themes that she so often uses, and the romance, this book, unlike others, had no time travel time slip elements Though I usually enjoy those light paranormal elements in her stories, I think that this book worked well without them I wish I could give this book two [...]

    4. I really enjoyed this book and that puts me in the minority amongst my GR friends I figure that s what keeps things exciting here at GR You just never know what will strike a chord with one person and not with the next I won t be writing a recap as the book blurb does a great job of that I really appreciated the way both storylines flowed There was no silly gimmick to get from one time period to the other That mind reading in The Firebird always took me right out of the story and I had a hard ti [...]

    5. When the newly unemployed Sara Thomas accepts a temporary job decoding a mysterious old journal from 1732, she unravels an unexpected story of adventure and romance while experiencing a surprising Paris interlude of her own Although a little slow going, thought the added perspective from Sara s Asperger Syndrome was well presented.Good story, but needed a little spice for my taste The Rose Garden still my favorite

    6. I m having a hard time figuring out how to rate this book I have read several of Kearsley s novels and loved them This one, unfortunately, didn t live up to my expectations It was really slow I enjoyed the characters but the story was just not very strong I must confess that the ARC copy I read had huge SOURCEBOOK logos on every other page which was distracting and is probably weighing into my review I still love SK and will jump at the chance to read her next novel 3.5.

    7. I yield at 61%, every time I pick this up it s still the same nothing happening here, move along feeling I may try another day, but too many books are calling me at the moment and too many library patrons are in line behind me.

    8. Opening up the first chapter of this book, or any book by Susanna Kearsley, is like front row tickets to your favorite band, world peace, finding the perfect jeans, Disneyland, and losing 10lbs in December all rolled into one.In Kearsley fashion, a present and historical timeline make the backdrop of the story The present day involves a young woman named Sara Thomas, a computer programer with an ability to solve number games, codes, and cyphers Sara is hired, through a friend, by a Parisian auth [...]

    9. Susanna Kearsley has done it again And it s beautiful and wonderful and all the good things about a book that makes you keep coming back to it over and over Susanna Kearsley is an auto buy author for me When a new book of hers comes out, I try to pick it up as quickly as possible and usually devour it in an afternoon All of her books blend the past and the present in such a way that you feel like you are stepping into the shoes of the characters and experiencing everything that they do.A Despera [...]

    10. Am I super lucky to have gotten my hands on an early copy of A Desperate Fortune Yes Yes I am If you love Kearsley it s got everything you love, plus, I thought an extra dose of adventure Two time lines, tons of romance, tons of adventure and for money you don t get a better hero than Hugh MacPearson You just don t Very great book Susanna is my September author for THE AUTHOR IS so if you d like to read a great interview with her sign up for my newsletter at molly okeefe

    11. What a fantastic premise I m intrigue with stories that involve code breaking and to blend in a time slip theme gives a story depth and compelling insight of the people in the story who break codes Their process in doing so if you will The way their mind works is truly extraordinary and the author shows that in this story Sara Thomas a women who was hired by an historian once famous is asked to cipher a journal from a women who lived in the past 300 hundred years ago in fact She is encouraged b [...]

    12. While I love many of Susanna Kearsley s books, I found A Desperate Fortune to be very similar to The Firebird very slow moving with very little plot twists and turns to keep the story moving forward I was rewarded for sticking with the book around the 37th chapter out of 42 chapters as at this point the pace picked up and it was a bit of Kearsley magic, but alas, too little, too late to give than 2 or 3 stars.

    13. Originally reviewed here AngievilleI discoveredSusanna Kearsley s books a few years ago through the utterly wonderfulThe Winter Sea It was love from start to finish with that book, and I eagerly checked out a few of her backlist I never fell quite as hard with the others as I did with The Winter Sea though, and so when I heard about A Desperate Fortune it didn t automatically zip to the top of my TBR But then my friend Beth read and loved it and did that thing where she smiles enigmatically and [...]

    14. This is a book about patience and broken people I finished this book two days ago, but I ve been kind of digesting my thoughts and sitting on this review A departure from her last few books, this book does not contain any supernatural elements or time slips It does follow a present day and past timeline Sara, who has Asperger s, which in many ways makes her the perfect candidate to decode a diary from the 1700 s written in cipher, And Mary, our Jacobite heroine who finds herself thrown into an a [...]

    15. I can t believe I ve not read this author before Thanks to my GRs friend Linda for her review which helped me to discover this gifted author.The story is actually two stories in one set in different times but connected through a diary of a young woman, Mary Dundas The diary was written in 1732 during turbulent times of Jacobitism It survived centuries but Mary s story was not known as the diary was written in a cryptic code That is where the second story comes in Set in present times, it feature [...]

    16. While better then The Firebird IMO, this one still fell flat for me in comparison to Mariana and Every Secret Thing The past storyline never made an emotional connection with me, and the twist I ve come to expect of Kearsley was missing in this one.What I did appreciate was that this Kearsley heroine the modern day one had Asberger s syndrome I m one of those readers who gnash my teeth over book heroines who have nothing to recommend them but pure physical beauty It was a bold step for Kearsley [...]

    17. I read another book from this author and after enjoying her old style romantic suspense tone I wanted to read of her work I spotted this one which promised a split story with two heroines a few centuries apart with a diary at the center of matters for them and settled in for an engaging set of stories.This is a standalone story, but fans of the Author s earlier Jacobite centered stories like The Winter Sea and The Firebird will recognize a few crossover characters doing cameo scenes.The book op [...]

    18. With the kiss of dual timelines, Susanna Kearsley introduced a modern day woman with Asberger s syndrome to 1730 s France Sara Thomas had been hired to help an author complete the last book in a trilogy The country gentleman, Alistair Scott, took his research seriously Determined to make his third story a success, he won Sara over by encouraging her interest She was to unravel a code used in a diary by a young lady from a bygone era Mary Dundas With political intrigue humming in the background, [...]

    19. This one takes a little bit to get going but is well worth your time and patience Miss Kearsley s gorgeous writing is on display in full here, weaving the dual narratives together seamlessly and building the world her characters inhabit so lovingly Hugh and Luc have taken the top spots of my favorites of the men she has written sorry Rob Good, loyal, and full of integrity Mary Dundas was easy to like, I felt like I grew close to her over the course of her journey You can t help but admire her co [...]

    20. Rated 4.5 This novel is like an archaeological dig of words, with the main character in this century unraveling the clues about the main character in the past Exciting and intriguing, A DESPERATE FORTUNE surprises with unexpected emotion.A great mixture of a modern day story following a mystery as it unfolds in history, A DESPERATE FORTUNE combines two time periods in a fictional tale that s exciting as well as emotional I was drawn to this novel, not just for the historical aspects but also bec [...]

    21. Well, I ve read a couple of books by Susanna Kearsley before and I have to say, this is one talented lady She writes these dual stories, in two separate time lines, and makes both of them magical and you feel like you are there, and it s all in the same book While I enjoyed Mary and Hugh s story than Sara and Luc s, I was equally as touched by Sara and Luc and the way he handled her and made her realize she didn t have to change and he wouldn t be scared away The reason I enjoyed Mary and Hugh [...]

    22. Thank you to Sourcebooks via Netgalley for the free review copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion.Did I like this book Do you ever read a book and think, Wow, this book is what that other book wanted to be That s what happened to me with A Desperate Fortune It was fantastic, and just so much better than many others I ve read written in the same vein At first, I was intrigued by the modern storyline because of my immediate connection with Sara She has Asperger s, and it was interesti [...]

    23. It took me a little while to get into this, but once I did I really enjoyed it I can always count on Kearsley to deliver a well rounded, engaging, interesting story Kearlsey almost always writes a dual timeline story, one set in present say and one in the past In Mariana I really enjoyed the contemporary storyline and was disappointed there wasn t of that In this one, I had the opposite reaction I didn t care as much for the present day storyline I feel like it had something to do with Sara s A [...]

    24. I love everything Susanna Kearsley writes so I was always going to love this, but even so this has to be one of my favorites from her works not the favorite though The Winter Sea will always win for that, perhaps because it was my first foray with Kearsley.A Desperate Fortune features a lot of familiar elements for fans of Kearsley s other titles romance, intrigue, dual narratives, and the modern day juxtaposed with the historical Kearsley always does the dual narrative really well, but I have t [...]

    25. Sara is a wiz with numbers Codes calm her and when an opportunity arrives to decode an old journal, it sounds like just the right task As the journal begins to reveal its secrets, Sara finds so much than a list of daily experiences, the life of Mary Dundas is a tale of a journey Mary becomes embroiled with exiled Jacobites and danger is only one piece of what she finds once she makes the choice to live a adventurous life I have read a LOT of Susanna Kearsley and I have enjoyed them all, but I [...]

    26. Whenever I m in a reading slump I can always count on a Susanna Kearsley novel They re readable, engrossing, and just plain good.A Desperate Fortune was a bit different than her last few novels There was no time travel, instead we just went back and forth between two women from two time periods What connected them was a journal written in code.The story takes place in France, with Sara in modern time, and Mary in the 18th century Employed by an author who needs the information from Mary s journa [...]

    27. Done.So this book was so good that I found myself staying up late two nights to read because I NEEDED TO KNOW WHAT HAPPENED NEXT.Hugh and Mary, you all HUGH AND MARY Hugh with his I DON T SMILE OR TALK ABOUT THINGS BUT WE NEED TO STOP WALKING FOR A FEW MINUTES BECAUSE MARY NEEDS TO CATCH HER BREATH And Mary who wants so bad to be loved and not have people leave her and Call your dog back Mary, call him back and UGH MY STINKING HEART.The modern day stuff was okay though it felt a bit too perfect [...]

    28. 4.5 bumping up because the ending of the historical section made me feeeeeeeeeeeeel.Less good things I agree with Brandy that Sara s voice doesn t sound that authentic in the beginning It gets better as it goes on, though.I m not entirely sure about the pacing It felt like it took too long for things to really get goingL OF THAT SAID I do think this was a good one The historical section is probably my favorite of the Kearsley s I ve read so far And I did end up liking the modern section a lot It [...]

    29. Slow, as Kearsley s always are, but also predictably rich in historical and atmospheric details This isn t my favorite of her stories by any stretch, but it presents good character development and enjoyable relationships, as ever.

    30. You all know I loved The Firebird, right Because I loved it But this book might have my favorite historical section of all the Kearsley books I ve read I really, really liked it It had a strong woman who fit her time period, and a lovely dog, and this quiet, compelling, slow building relationship Kearsley s really good at depicting isolation and loneliness, and it makes even her open ended resolutions satisfying in contrast The present day section moved too quickly for my taste, though view spoi [...]

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