Evangeline Ames has rented a country cottage far from the London streets where she was recently attacked. Fascinated by the paranormal energy of nearby Crystal Gardens, she finds pleasure in sneaking past the wall to explore the grounds. And when her life is threatened again, she instinctively goes to the gardens for safety.
Lucas Sebastian has never been one to ignore a lady in danger, even if she is trespassing on his property. Quickly disposing of her would-be assassin, he insists they keep the matter private. There are rumors enough already, about treasure buried under his garden, and occult botanical experiments performed by his uncle--who died of mysterious causes. With Evangeline's skill for detection, and Lucas's sense of the criminal mind, they soon discover that they have a common enemy. And as the energy emanating from Crystal Gardens intensifies, they realize that to survive they must unearth what has been buried for too long.
Trade Paperback, 320 pages
Published May 3rd 2012 by Piatkus Books
Crystal Gardens is a truly exceptional start to what I expect will be a fantastic new series! I was intrigued from the first chapter and the storyline only went from strength to strength. I have never read anything like Crystal Gardens before, set in Victorian London with supernatural elements really did set it apart as a novel and made it an unforgettable read! Amanda Quick writes beautifully and anyone who has the pleasure of reading this will be entranced rather quickly. You will also quickly fall in love with the quirky characters that are full of adventure and mystery.
Evangeline Ames is a professional companion and novelist who has a special supernatural talent. She was recently attacked preforming her working duties, so she takes a break to a secluded little cottage on the outskirts of Little Dixby. Little does Evangeline know that it won't be the peaceful break she intended. Someone is really out to get her and sends some knife wielding maniac to bump her off in the dead of the night. She narrowly escapes to the dangerous Crystal Gardens that lie on the outskirts of the cottage's property.
Evangeline runs right into the arms of the dark, mysterious Lucas Sebastian! They immediately sense each others psychic abilities and are instantly intrigued and drawn to each other. Lucas, never the one to ignore a damsel in distress steps in to defend Evangeline from her attacker, who has a mysterious accident while in the gardens. Lucas decides to put his skills to good work and find out who is out to get Miss Ames. They soon find out that they share a common enemy.
I loved the ending of Crystal Gardens, everything tied up beautifully and I was thrilled for everyone involved. The Gardens themselves for me was the most brilliant part of the book, they were so beautifully imagined and amazingly brought to life. I could picture the Night Garden perfectly in my head and I just would love to get lost in them for hours, as dark and dangerous as they are they have a certain beauty that begs to be explored. I also loved the blossoming romance between Lucas and Evangeline, it was raw, honest and not forced in the slightest.
This book is a real winner that I thoroughly enjoyed, I cannot wait to read the next book in The Ladies of Lantern Street series!
*Special thanks to Piatkus Books for the review copy*