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Publisher's Summary

"This lush, high-stakes, adventure tale has it all - a rollicking plot, a sweet slow burn of a romance, and a heroine on an epic journey filled with ciphers, curses, and twists that kept me guessing at every turn. A delightful read from start to finish, Curse of the Specter Queen is one of my new favorites." (Alyson Noël, number-one NYT best-selling author of The Immortals)

May the Hazel bring you wisdom and the Aspen guide and protect you....

Samantha Knox put away her childish fantasies of archaeological adventure the day her father didn't return home from the Great War, retreating to the safety of the antique bookshop where she works. But when a mysterious package arrives with a damaged diary inside, Sam's peaceful life is obliterated. Ruthless men intent on reclaiming the diary are after Sam, setting her and her best friend, along with her childhood crush, on a high-stakes adventure that lands them in the green hills outside Dublin, Ireland. 

Here they discover an ancient order with a dark purpose - to perform an occult ritual that will raise the Specter Queen, the Celtic goddess of vengeance and death, to bring about a war unlike any the world has ever seen. To stop them, Sam must solve a deviously complex cipher - one that will lead her on a treasure hunt to discover the ancient relic at the heart of the ritual: a bowl carved from the tree of life. Will she find the bowl and stop the curse of the Specter Queen, or will the ancient order bring about the end of the world? 

Indiana Jones gets a refresh with this female-driven mystery adventure, set in the 1920s, full of ciphers, ancient relics, and heart-stopping action - the first in a brand-new series!

©2021 Jenny Elder Moke (P)2021 Disney Hyperion

What listeners say about Curse of the Specter Queen

Average Customer Ratings
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  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
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    2 out of 5 stars

Just ok!

I did not know when I started this it was a YA novel so my expectations my have been off. That said I really did not enjoy this. It was way too predictable with VERY shallow characters. The 3 main protagonists seemed like a single character split in 3 and based on the traits of cowardice, recklessness, & overbearing do-gooder. This did not change much throughout the book with the exception of Sam. She did get a little braver towards the end which is one of the reasons I'm gibing this 2.5 stars. Bennett and Jo shown growth. Jo was jut there to be provide constant snark with no discernible other characteristics. Bennett was the main character I liked least. The main villain gave the best description of Bennett but I leave that out so as to spoil anything. The description is towards the end and you'll know when you read it. The villain was a typical 2 dimensional villain that served the purpose of a villain fine.

There is the framework of a good story here. I think the author has good ideas throughout the book but the execution was lacking. These characters needed more character development and growth to feel realization not just the product of 1 or 2 traits. Good characters are more complex than what was presented here.

The narrator was fine but limited.

This was not horrible by any means and I may check out the 2nd one at some point.

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Not what I expected

I'm not sure what I was expecting but this was not something I normally read but more of watch a movie on. It had a good storyline and interesting characters. Most of the plot was not a surprise. I dont know but I was missing something from this book. It was still a good read if you like movies like The Mummy.

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Nancy Drew meets Robert Langdon

Curse of the Spectre Queen is a madcap romp set in the mid-1920s. The main character, Sam (Samantha) is a combination of early Nancy Drew with Dan Brown’s Professor Robert Langdon. Sam is, of course, the smartest person in the room, outstripping her wealthy friends, siblings Bennett and Joanne, despite Sam’s limited educational opportunities. The threat of evil magic propels the trio across the Atlantic to Dublin, where Sam is able to save life as we know it in a thrilling climax. The epilog assures us that the adventures of the trio will continue in future episodes, and I look forward to the next book! (Note: I know this is a YA book, so perhaps I should mention that I am an OA – but still found it fun.)

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Fun but predictable romp

Overall a fun story with elements of the supernatural, but I did find it to be pretty predictable. The predictability meant I was never left wondering what would happen, and didn't leave me yearning to get back to it to see what happened next. I did not much enjoy the narration - a few of the male characters voiced by the female narrated were very over-the-top cheesy masculine, and the non-character lines often came out flat.