Review: The Cipher by Diana Pharaoh Francis

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Publisher: Bellebooks
Publishing Date: June 2014
ISBN: 9781611944570
Genre: Fantasy
Rating: 4.8/5

Publisher Description: Lucy Trenton’s ability to sense majick is one of her most dangerous secrets. But only one. A blackmailer knows the other.
Suddenly, Lucy is caught in a treasonous plot to destroy the crown, and she’s trapped in the tentacles of a desperate, destructive majick. Her only hope is ship captain Marten Thorpe, who—by every account—cannot be trusted. With time running out, Lucy must find a way to win a dangerous game or lose everything she holds dear.

Review: Whats with the sudden deluge of chicks wearing red cloaks? Looks like Monica Lewinsky hiding behind some curtains. The cover below is a little better. This is a re-release, originally published in 2007.

I am surprised. I liked this novel….a lot. Preconceptions promote bias, so my bad.
Lucy is kind of a dumbass dockside customs inspector, descended from Royalty. She flits around getting hot and bothered by men she just met, then somehow falls victim to a blackmailer that somehow knows she collects magical ciphers (which is against the law…sort of).

Sound like crap? It wasn’t. This novel exceeded my low expectations by a very wide margin. Lucy turns out to be an interesting character as do her friends Marten, Sarah, and Keros. The story-line is a twisted plot that seeks to culminate in the over-throw and eventual control of the Kingdom by the Jutra, an almost alien species residing on the same planet. While I am still not sure why Lucy was essential to the overthrow of the kingdom as only her seals are stolen, she enables the main story-line to unfold through her eyes, and eventually becomes integral to the plot.

The minor fall downs were that the beginning of the novel fails to grab the reader, but thankfully that is short lived. The Bramble/Blood Oak Island sequence is too short and doesn’t capture the importance of the event.

While the sylveth majick is still a mystery, this may soon be remedied by further installments. Lucy is a tough woman, with a sharp tongue and curves enough for any man. She captures your imagination and the author does a great job with scene development so visualization is a breeze. Get it!

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One thought on “Review: The Cipher by Diana Pharaoh Francis

  1. Thanx for the review; I’ll give this one a try.

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