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The Beautiful

Instant New York Times and Indie Bestseller!

New York Times bestselling author Renée Ahdieh returns with a sumptuous, sultry and romantic new series set in 19th century New Orleans where vampires hide in plain sight.


In 1872, New Orleans is a city ruled by the dead. But to seventeen-year-old Celine Rousseau, New Orleans is a safe haven after she's forced to flee her life as a dressmaker in Paris. Taken in by the sisters of the Ursuline convent in the middle of the carnival season, Celine is quickly enraptured by the vibrant city, from its music to its fancy soirées and even its danger. She becomes embroiled in the city's glitzy underworld, known as La Cour des Lions, after catching the eye of the group's enigmatic leader, Sébastien Saint Germain.

When the body of one of the girls from the convent is found in Sébastien's own lair--the second dead girl to turn up in recent weeks--Celine battles her attraction to Sébastien and suspicions about his guilt along with the shame of her own horrible secret.

After a third murder, New Orleans becomes gripped by the terror of a serial killer on the loose--one who has now set Celine in his sights. As the murderer stalks her, Celine finally takes matters into her own hands, only to find herself caught in the midst of an age-old feud between the darkest creatures of the night, where the price of forbidden love is her life.

At once a sultry romance and a decadent, thrilling mystery, master storyteller Renée Ahdieh embarks on her most potent fantasy series yet.
Portrait
Renée Ahdieh is a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. In her spare time, she likes to dance salsa and collect shoes. She is passionate about all kinds of curry, rescue dogs, and college basketball. The first few years of her life were spent in a high-rise in South Korea; consequently, Renée enjoys having her head in the clouds. She lives in Charlotte, North Carolina, with her husband and their tiny overlord of a dog. She is the author of
Flame in the Mist and
Smoke in the Sun as well as the #1
New York Times bestselling
The Wrath and the Dawn and its sequel,
The Rose and the Dagger.
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  • Artikelbild-0
  • 1st février, 1872

    aboard the CGT Aramis

    Not What It Seemed


    The
    Aramis was supposed to arrive at first light, like it did in Celine’s dreams.

     

    She would wake beneath a sunlit sky, the brine of the ocean winding through her nose, the city looming bright on the horizon.

     

    Filled with promise. And absolution.

     

    Instead the brass bell on the bow of the
    Aramis tolled in the twilight hour, the time of day her friend Pippa called “the gloaming.” It was—in Celine’s mind—a very British thing to say.

     

    She’d begun collecting these phrases not long after she’d met Pippa four weeks ago, when the
    Aramis had docked for two days in Liverpool. Her favorite so far was “not bloody likely.” Celine didn’t know why they mattered to her at the time. Perhaps it was because she thought Very British Things would serve her better in America than the Very French Things she was apt to say.

     

    The moment Celine heard the bell clang, she made her way portside, Pippa’s light footsteps trailing in her wake. Inky tendrils of darkness fanned out across the sky, a ghostly mist shrouding the Crescent City. The air thickened as the two girls listened to the
    Aramis sluice through the waters of the Mississippi, drawing closer to New Orleans. Farther from the lives they’d left behind.

     

    Pippa sniffed and rubbed her nose. In that instant, she looked younger than her sixteen years. “For all the stories, it’s not as pretty as I thought it would be.”

     

    “It’s exactly what I thought it would be,” Celine said in a reassuring tone.

     

    “Don’t lie.” Pippa glanced at her sidelong. “It won’t make me feel better.”

     

    A smile curled up Celine’s face. “Maybe I’m lying for me as much as I’m lying for you.”

     

    “In any case, lying is a sin.”

     

    “So is being obnoxious.”

     

    “That’s not in the Bible.”

     

    “But it should be.”

     

    Pippa coughed, trying to mask her amusement. “You’re terrible. The sisters at the Ursuline convent won’t know what to do with you.”

     

    “They’ll do the same thing they do with every unmarried girl who disembarks in New Orleans, carrying with her all her worldly possessions: they’ll find me a husband.” Celine refrained from frowning. This had been her choice. The best of the worst.

     

    “If you strike them as ungodly, they’ll match you with the ugliest fool in Christendom. Definitely someone with a bulbous nose and a paunch.”

     

    “Better an ugly man than a boring one. And a paunch means he eats well, so . . .” Celine canted her head to one side.

     

    “Really, Celine.” Pippa laughed, her Yorkshire accent weaving through the words like fine Chantilly lace. “You’re the most incorrigible French girl I’ve ever met.”

     

    Celine smiled at her friend. “I’d wager you haven’t met many French girls.”

     

    “At least not ones who speak English as well as you do. As if you were born to it.”

     

    “My father thought it was important for me to learn.” Celine lifted one shoulder, as though this were the whole of it, instead of barely half. At the mention of her father—a staid Frenchman who’d studied linguistics at Oxford—a shadow threatened to descend. A sadness with a weight Celine could not yet bear. She fixed a wry grin on her face.

     

    Pippa crossed her arms as though she were hugging herself. Worry gathered beneath the fringe of blond on her forehead as the two girls continued studying the city in the distance. Every young woman on board had heard the whispered accounts. At sea, the myths they’d shared over cups of gritty, bitter coffee had taken on lives of their own. They’d blended with the stories of the Old World to form richer, darker tales. New Orleans was haunted. Cursed by pirates. Prowled by scalawags. A last refuge for those who believed in magic and mysticism. Why, there was even talk of women possessing as much power and influence as that of any man.

     

    Celine had laughed at this. As she’d dared to hope. Perhaps New Orleans was not what it seemed, at first glance. Fittingly, neither was she.

     

    And if anything could be said about the young travelers aboard the
    Aramis, it was that the possibility of magic like this—a world like this—had become a vital thing. Especially for those who wished to shed the specter of their pasts. To become something better and brighter.

     

    And especially for those who wanted to escape.

     

    Pippa and Celine watched as they drew closer to the unknown. To their futures.

     

    “I’m frightened,” Pippa said softly.

     

    Celine did not respond. Night had seeped through the water, like a dark stain across organza. A scraggly sailor balanced along a wooden beam with all the grace of an aerialist while lighting a lamp on the ship’s prow. As if in response, tongues of fire leapt to life across the water, rendering the city in even more ghoulishly green tones.

     

    The bell of the
    Aramis pealed once more, telling those along the port how far the ship had left to travel. Other passengers made their way from below deck, coming to stand alongside Celine and Pippa, muttering in Portuguese and Spanish, English and French, German and Dutch. Young women who’d taken leaps of faith and left their homelands for new opportunities. Their words melted into a soft cacophony of sound that would—under normal circumstances—soothe Celine.

     

    Not anymore.

     

    Ever since that fateful night amid the silks in the atelier, Celine had longed for comfortable silence. It had been weeks since she’d felt safe in the presence of others. Safe with the riot of her own thoughts. The closest she’d ever come to wading through calmer waters had been in the presence of Pippa.

     

    When the ship drew near enough to dock, Pippa took sudden hold of Celine’s wrist, as though to steel herself. Celine gasped. Flinched at the unexpected touch. Like a spray of blood had shot across her face, the salt of it staining her lips.

     

    “Celine?” Pippa asked, her blue eyes wide. “What’s wrong?”

     

    Breathing through her nose to steady her pulse, Celine wrapped both hands around Pippa’s cold fingers. “I’m frightened, too.”
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Beschreibung

Produktdetails

Einband Taschenbuch
Seitenzahl 448
Altersempfehlung 12 - 15
Erscheinungsdatum 08.10.2019
Sprache Englisch
ISBN 978-1-984816-50-4
Verlag Penguin LCC US
Maße (L/B/H) 20,8/13,6/3,5 cm
Gewicht 434 g
Verkaufsrang 3781
Buch (Taschenbuch, Englisch)
Buch (Taschenbuch, Englisch)
9,19
9,19
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Supernatural Historical Murder Mystery
von einer Kundin/einem Kunden am 16.10.2019

"The Beautiful" is the first installment of Renée Ahdieh's latest duology and consists of an interesting mix of supernatural, historical and murder mystery elements. When her actions make it impossible for 17-year-old dressmaker Celine to stay in Paris, she decides to flee across the big pond to New Orleans. There, she is quick... "The Beautiful" is the first installment of Renée Ahdieh's latest duology and consists of an interesting mix of supernatural, historical and murder mystery elements. When her actions make it impossible for 17-year-old dressmaker Celine to stay in Paris, she decides to flee across the big pond to New Orleans. There, she is quickly enraptured by the city and its vibrant inhabitants. Before long, however, there is a gruesome murder and Celine finds herself in the middle of an age-old feud… I liked "The Wrath and the Dawn" and loved "Flame in the Mist", so when I heard that Renée Ahdieh had written a new book, I knew I had to get my hands on it, even more so, once I realized it was a supernatural historical murder mystery. So, it pains me to say that my expectations weren't met. To me, "The Beautiful" isn't half as riveting as Ahdieh's previous novels. Even though, there is quite a lot going on, this book is rather slow-paced, which I am not a fan of most of the time, especially when it comes to murder mysteries. Additionally, I feel like "The Beautiful" serves as an introduction to its upcoming sequel "The Damned". The characters are introduced quite well and the story builds up nicely towards the end only to finish once it starts to get really interesting. Also, I am not particularly fond of the protagonist or any of the other characters, except for Pippa, that is. It's not like they are overly unlikeable, though, I just didn't connect with them at all. Furthermore, I do not care for the romantic part of the story as I failed to feel their attraction/connection. Don't get me wrong, "The Beautiful" is not a bad book by any means. I loved the writing and enjoyed the overall plot, but I had hoped for more.