By Kelli Stanley
(Minotaur Books, Hardcover, 9780312654191, 320pp.)
Publication Date: February 1, 2011
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The Curse-Maker is the sequel to he award-winning Nox Dormienda, the first book of the Roman noir series created by Kelli Stanley (City of Dragons). Wedding impeccably researched history to prose and themes reminiscent of classic hard-boiled writers, The Curse-Maker is a thrilling and suspenseful journey into a dark corner of Roman Britain you've never seen before. When Roman physician Arcturus and his stunning wife, Gwyna, arrive at Bath for a holiday, a dead body is floating in the sacred spring. It turns out that the murdered man is a curse-maker whose invocations actually come true, and as murder follows murder, it looks like there's now a curse on Arcturus. This is an exciting and exotic story of a spa town where people go to heal...only to wind up dead. And it takes the doctor-investigator on a dark road -- into Roman cemeteries, silver mines, and underground water tunnels -- to comprehend the twisted mind of a killer bent on revenge.
KELLI STANLEY's first novel in the 1940 San Francisco-set Miranda Corbie series, CITY OF DRAGONS, was met with overwhelming critical acclaim and was a finalist for the prestigious Los Angeles Times Book Prize. Stanley also writes a highly-praised series set in Roman Britain, the latest of which is THE CURSE-MAKER. Her debut novel, NOX DORMIENDA, won the Bruce Alexander Award for best historical mystery of 2008. She makes her home in Dashiell Hammett’s San Francisco, earned a Master’s Degree in Classics, and loves jazz, old movies, fedoras, Art Deco and speakeasies.
"Terrific noir. The flavor and setting shine, and Stanley has the knack for creating an atmosphere that feels as if she has transcribed actual historical events.... Stanley is definitely one to watch."
--RT Book Reviews "Besides writing an engrossing mystery ... Stanley serves up fascinating and never heavy-handed information on Roman life."
--Booklist (Starred Review) "Well-plotted ... all will wish this historical series a long life."
--Publishers Weekly "Captures the details and rhythms of daily life in the ancient empire."