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Zinnia (St. Helens #2)

4.15  ·  Rating Details ·  3,664 Ratings  ·  94 Reviews
New York Times bestselling author JAYNE CASTLE--Capturing the lively sensuality (Library Journal) of the passion-filled, near-future space colony of St. Helens, the wildly popular alter ego of bestselling author Jayne Ann Krentz delivers delectably entertaining paranormal romantic suspense (Booklist)!

Ever since a false tabloid story ruined her reputation and her interior
Paperback, 344 pages
Published October 12th 2010 by Pocket Books (first published 1997)
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The second in the St. Helens series, this is another in JAK's futuristic romance genre, a genre I feel is peculiarly her own, although I own a few books by other authors that I consider to be in this genre as well. No one does it better than Krentz, however. Fun, funny, and fast-paced - the three f's of good reading and a sure thing with any Krentz book. No matter how many times I read this book, I can't find anything I'd want to change. I only wish there were more St. Helen's books. On to the ...more
Another great book set on the faraway lost/forgotten planet of St. Helens. Great pacing, exciting plot, great chemistry, wonderful mystery, full of attraction, suspense, with wonderful characterization and a not so "amandaquickish" heroine. ;)

Loved it.
Apr 29, 2016 Amyiw rated it really liked it
So even so that the characters seemed interchangeable to the first book, I found the mystery and the way it ended to be quite satisfying, especially since I didn't see it coming. More so than the first book, which I had qualms about how it got there. I thought the female character became a little smarter through the book, which she really had to do or it wouldn't have worked either in the relationship or mystery. I wish we got to see a little of the couple of the first book but didn't happen. ...more
Sep 28, 2008 Sherry rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: paranormal/sci-fi/romance/chic-lit
“Zinnia”, the second title in the Curtain trilogy by Jayne Castle, is just as delightful and entertaining as the first title. Nick Chastain is a casino owner who has lived with the social label of bastard and an off the charts psychic ability is convinced that his self disciplined control over his power and his easy ability of making money is all he needs, that and the one most important challenge of his life, to solve the mystery of his fathers death.
Zinnia Springs is an independent woman si
Sarra Lord
Nov 21, 2008 Sarra Lord rated it liked it
Recommended to Sarra by: Janine
Shelves: bookcrossing, 2008
Second in a trilogy.

I found this review of the book on some book site:

In a far-off world where lifelong marriages are arranged by coupling agencies, Nick Chastain and Zinnia Spring are deemed incompatible. But with the help of their undying love, the couple fights against the laws of society to be together.

and found it to be somewhat misleading.

Zinnia and Nick aren't deemed incompatible towards each other, merely unmatchable by the agency. They come upon each other on their own, she a high leve
Nov 22, 2008 Kitty rated it really liked it
A total surprise. Someone loaned it to me, and I held onto it for a long time before giving it a try - just didn't look like my cup of tea, from the cover. (Yeah, I know... you shouldn't judge a book by its cover, LOL.) Takes place on another planet, inhabited by Earthlings stranded many generations ago. Most have developed physic powers. Some very different stuff, but the characters make the story - I loved the people!
May 30, 2012 Lidia rated it really liked it
A book with a bad boy protagonist is always a guarantee for an interesting story, exciting and passionate. If then the female protagonist is a woman like Zinnia, intelligent, stubborn and determined, then it is certain, the book is beautiful. Set in another dimension with people who have psychic powers and with the addition of a mystery to uncover or to unmask a murderer, then the fun is guaranteed. Evocative and extraordinary description of the maze.
Feb 24, 2016 Anne rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2016-books-read
I found this to be slow paced, until the end. Took me forever to get through it.
Author: Jayne Ann Krentz writing as Jayne Castle
First published: 1997
Length: 344 pages
Setting: Future on the planet of St Helens.
Sex: Reasonably explicit but infrequent.
Hero: Off-the-scales matrix-talent. Owns a casino. Illegitimate.
Heroine: part-time professional prism. Owns interior design company.
Paranormal: Every psychic talent requires a prism to control and direct their talent. Prism must be at least as strong as the talent or risks "burning out".

"He was a matrix-talent, gifted, or cursed,
Aug 25, 2013 Patrice rated it really liked it
For me, this book was great. It has romance, mystery, humor, and sci-fi all wrapped up in one story. I really got into the main characters, Zinnia Spring and Nick Chastain. The story takes place on another planet in a place called St Helens. People from Earth were sent there to colonize it. On this new planet they discovered that some things brought from Earth would not last on the new planet. The pioneers also found that on this new planet, human’s psychic abilities were brought to the ...more
BJ Rose
Mar 26, 2011 BJ Rose rated it liked it
Shelves: psychic, futuristic
You can’t fight Mother Nature. Psychic talents need the help of a human prism to help them focus and use their power to the fullest extent – just following the laws of synergy. But Nick has learned that most prisms don’t like to work with matrix-talents, and that’s what he is. But when he sends out a psychic probe, he gets a response from a strong prism in his casino – Zinnia has been wandering the casino, trying to figure out a way to get into Nick Chastain’s office because she’s convinced he ...more
Paranormal Romance
The heroine is trying to rebuild her life after a false scandal destroyed everything she built. She bursts into the hero's office to demand he release her client, whom she's convinced the hero has kidnapped. The hero is a bastard and an owner of a casino who wants nothing more than to buy his way into high society. He's a rare and power bred of psychic that makes his paranoid and reclusive and, he fears, will drive him insane one day. He's shocked to realize that the heroine, with her psychic ...more
Apr 03, 2013 Matthew rated it really liked it
Shelves: romance
It really was a fun book to read. Although it had some glaring problems.

The plot and romance was essentially the same weak writing as in the other book by this author I read, Shield's Lady. That is, the essential twists were the same and the romance had the same sudden, intense quality linked to some magical link that wasn't really adequately explained, justified or shown. The author doesn't really seem to grasp the art of showing rather than telling. In fact, compared to the other book, this ha
Mar 08, 2011 Emily rated it liked it
In her second novel of St. Helens, Castle introduces us to Zinnia Spring, a full-spectrum prism who is comfortable working only with the paranoid, obsessive, secretive and exceedingly rare matrix talent. Nick Chastain, a wealthy casino owner who has a five year plan to buy respectability is just such a talent. When both are caught up in the search for Nick's father's journal, they find in each other a perfect match.
I continue to enjoy the tales of St. Helens, although there is one thing I have t
Jane Stewart
This was an ok story, but nothing really grabbed me.

The characters, the plot, and the mystery had no problems that I could define, but I just wasn’t interested enough. I wasn't emotionally drawn in, and I didn't feel anything memorable at the end.

This is book 2 in the St. Helen's Trilogy. It is a mystery set in the future, on another planet called St. Helens. A Curtain created a gate between earth and St. Helens which allowed humans to travel. The Curtain later closed, and all humans there were
Dec 27, 2014 Margaret rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
**New York Times bestselling author JAYNE CASTLE

Capturing the “lively sensuality” (*Library Journal *) of the passion-filled, near-future space colony of St. Helen’s, the wildly popular alter ego of bestselling author Jayne Ann Krentz delivers “delectably entertaining paranormal romantic suspense” (*Booklist*)!


****Ever since a false tabloid story ruined her reputation and her interior design business, Zinnia Spring has been labeled the “Scarlet Lady” of St. Helen’s. Now, headstrong Zinnia mak
Oct 21, 2015 Donna rated it really liked it
There is something about the way Castle writes - I very much enjoy the stories but it's always a question as to whether I'll engage with the characters. Sometimes I do and often I don't. Fortunately, I really liked Zinnia and Nick, individually and as a couple. I had the same feeling of engagement with the characters in the previous book, "Amaryllis", but I think I enjoyed this book just a little more. I liked the futuristic world of St. Helen's, the variety of psychic abilities, the overall ...more
Judy Goodnight
Book #2 in the St. Helens series

Nick Chastain is a bastard/casino-owning bad boy who has a matrix talent that allows him to make money, lots of it. Enough money, in fact, to buy the one thing he wants above all else - respectability. The one thing he needs, though, is the journal his father kept that will prove that his father was murdered for an important discovery he made and not that he went insane & committed suicide.

Zinnia Spring is the notorious "Scarlet Lady" - an interior designer wh
Apr 12, 2016 Sep rated it really liked it
I enjoyed "Zinnia" a tiny bit more than "Amaryllis". Six months before the story starts, our heroine was framed as the conniving tart who tried to break up the marriage of a wealthy businessman. (Said man is trying to distract the public from noticing that he is involved in something the public would find even more interesting and unusual.) Poor Zinnia's business collapsed her tormentors get off scot free. Labeled as the "scarlet lady" by the sleezepapers, she retaliates by wearing only red. ...more
Dawn (Kat N Hat)
I enjoyed the book, the characters and the story line. I thought going into it that this was a paranormal romance, but I am not sure I would classify it as paranormal fantasy yes, not quite paranormal.

The one point of the book that fails is the futuristic plot.
The story is set in a supposed future of the human race, but they have not evolved past our present. The fail of their earth technology is supposed to explain this but it fails a bit. I was raised with star wars and star trek. I find it
Book Monitor
We're back on St Helen's and this time the main characters are Zinnia and Nick. I particularly liked Nick, he was the sort of man that appeals to me. Confident and careless of others opinions of him. I loved his tacky decor, his authority and total beleif that he could buy himself respectability. AS usual with Ms Krentz there is a mystery to resolve, threats and danger, and a wide cast of extra's, including some from the previous book in this mini-series. The writer has really given a sense of ...more
Sep 13, 2015 Cindy rated it really liked it
Second in the St. Helens series but it can also be read as a stand alone book. Zinnia has fallen from the top level of society after her parents' death, the bankruptcy of the family firm and being framed by some of her peers to hide a sex scandal. Nick was born a bastard in a culture that values famly above all else and owns a casino. They meet in odd circumstances and start bonding over a bookseller's murdered corpse. Together they work to discover the secrets of his father's last expedition, ...more
Apr 27, 2016 Jennifer rated it really liked it
Ever since a false tabloid story ruined her reputation and her interior design business, Zinnia Spring has been helping others focus and control their psychic abilities on the distant planet of St. Helen's, similar to Earth in many ways, aside from the fact that the majority of its inhabitants have varying levels of psychic abilities. When casino owner, Nick Chastain, hires Zinnia to help him find his father's journal, they find themselves on a dangerous mission to uncover the past and the truth ...more
Jan 30, 2016 Lisa rated it it was amazing
This was a great read. I liked this book better than the first one in the St. Helen's series, Amaryllis, mainly because the heroine was more likable. Where Amaryllis was so naive that she became a danger to herself and others, Zinnia was a strong, smart, confident woman who kept her wits about her.

The romance between Nick and Zinnia was good and believable and I liked that she saved him as often as he saved her while they sorted out the mystery. All around just a good solid read.

I should note, h
Barb in Maryland
This is a paranormal/futuristic bit the JAK wrote back in 1997. I read it when it first came out, of course.
I just finished re-reading it (Pocket has re-released it with a new hunky guy cover) and I have to say that it holds up very, very well. I actually like this set of three books better than her more recent series (After Dark, After Glow, Obsidian Prey, etc) that is set on a different world (Harmony) in the same future.
Typical witty, smart characters: Guy is a bit alpha, but not obnoxiously
Mar 08, 2014 Caitlin rated it it was ok
This book was rather hard for me to get through. The writing style was painfully repetitive. I lost count of how often Castle used the phrases "off the charts talent", "poor Morris", and "typical matrix." The repetition made the world of St. Helens less satisfying and made me question the intelligence of the main characters. As for the romance element, there was no real sizzle and the progression did not feel believable. I won't be reading more from this series any time soon.
Jul 06, 2015 Narariel rated it really liked it
This was an interesting & enjoyable St. Helens book. I liked the heroine a great deal, particularly the way she faces/deals with adversity. The hero felt a bit... less than most of the other romantic heroes. Not in terms of power, but perhaps in terms of his love for the heroine & his concern for her. It's not one to re-read right away, though I expect I'll eventually re-read it. Still, it was a fun read with a couple of nice twists.
Nicola Pike
Jul 19, 2014 Nicola Pike rated it it was amazing
I love the male characters in this series, they are strong and powerful and always say dumb stuff when trying to woo their ladies. the women sometimes irritate me as they are such do gooders. in this case Zinnia gets drawn into solving a murder for a client she work with. a little hard to believe she would risk her life just for some random person she knew but other than that I really like the dynamics between the characters.

first reading July 2012
Maureen Kelly
Before there was Harmony

This is the prototype for the Harmony series. As always the hero and heroine are off the chart talents. And again as always, the male is the strong stoic type who needs the love of an attractive sassy off the chart talent who had previously been emotionally injured in the past.
This is pretty standard Castle/Krentz/Quick fare. If you like her books, this is a good choice for you.
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Jayne Ann Krentz ...: Zinnia (1997) 1 1 Sep 23, 2012 03:43PM  
  • Shield's Lady (Lost Colony, #3)
  • The Perfect Poison (Arcane Society, #6)
The author of over 40 consecutive New York Times bestsellers, JAYNE ANN KRENTZ writes romantic-suspense, often with a psychic and paranormal twist, in three different worlds: Contemporary (as Jayne Ann Krentz), historical (as Amanda Quick) and futuristic (as Jayne Castle). There are over 30 million copies of her books in print.

She earned a B.A. in History from the University of California at Sant
More about Jayne Castle...

Other Books in the Series

St. Helens (3 books)
  • Amaryllis (St. Helen's, #1)
  • Orchid (St. Helen's, #3)

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