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Tears of Pearl (Lady Emily #4)

3.69  ·  Rating Details  ·  4,076 Ratings  ·  428 Reviews
Set amid the beauty and decadence of the Ottoman Empire, Lady Emily's latest adventure is full of intrigue, treachery, and romance.

Looking forward to the joys of connubial bliss, newlyweds Lady Emily and Colin Hargreaves, diplomats of the British Empire, set out toward Turkey for an exotic honeymoon. But on their first night in the city, a harem girl is found murdered, str
ebook, 320 pages
Published September 1st 2009 by Minotaur Books (first published January 1st 2009)
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I found myself repeatedly sighing out loud and rolling my eyes at the ridiculous, unlikely, unbelievable and melodramatic events and dialogue throughout this mediocre murder mystery.

I know Tasha Alexander can do better. She created wonderful characters in Lady Emily and Colin Hargreaves in 'And Only to Deceive' and she continued to develop their relationship in 'A Poisoned Season'. I thought both books were wonderful and I would recommend either of them to any one who enjoys good historical fic
First Sentence: It is always a mistake to underestimate the possibilities of a train compartment.

Newly-married Lady Emily and Colin Hargraves are off to Constantinople for their honeymoon. On their way there, they meet a fellow Englishman with a tragic past who has lived there for years. Many years’ prior, he and his family had been attacked while camping. His wife was murdered and his 3-year-old daughter kidnapped. He now finds his daughter again: grown, living in a harem and murdered.

This is a
Allison (The Allure of Books)
This is the first book of this series I've actually reviewed since I read the others before joining Goodreads, but that hasn't stopped me from recommending them all over the place! I'm just glad to finally be able to review one with events fresh on my mind.

In this book more than the others, Emily reminded me of Amelia Peabody (and I can't think of a higher compliment!). Even silly things put me in mind to the series by Elizabeth Peters-like the use of the word "ablutions". In any case, Emily's c
Mar 06, 2011 kari rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2011
I'm becoming very disillusioned with this series. Lady Emily, who started out as such a smart and thoughtful person, has devolved into a selfish me-me-me! who can't seem to realize that she isn't going to get life exactly as she wants it. I was so disgusted with her for most of this book that I really didn't want to finish it. And the solution to her dilemma was convenient to say the least.
The mystery here wasn't involving. In this one, I figured out whodunit shortly after the murderer arrived
Wow, NOT my favorite of the series, obviously. The first problem I had was the number of coincidences that lead up to Colin and Emily investigating the murder of a harem girl in Constantinople--the entire way they get involved just seemed completely unbelievable to me. And then it also felt obvious to me from the start who the real culprit was, which made it frustrating to have to sit through an entire book waiting for Emily to FINALLY get to the same conclusion, especially when she completely m ...more
Sep 13, 2012 ~Leslie~ rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ebook-kindle
I have been up and down about this series, mostly because of Lady Emily. I did not like her in the first book, liked her much better in the next two and now that she is married finally to Colin Hargreaves, I don't like her again. It seems as if marriage has sucked the life out of this series. In this story, Colin and Lady Emily are on their honeymoon in Turkey and get involved in a murder investigation that involves a young English woman who was kidnapped as a child and ended up in a harem. Beca ...more
Yukari Watanabe
Jul 24, 2009 Yukari Watanabe rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Historical mystery with a bit of romance is my kind of guilty pleasure. And "Lady Emily Mysteries" is one of my favorite guilty pleasures. I especially loved the last one, "A Fatal Waltz". It was thrilling as a mystery, and the romance between Emily and Colin was part of mystery which kept me wondering until the end. After such a satisfying conclusion, I couldn't help worrying about the 4th book becoming boring.
What would Emily and Colin do after they get married?

Well, I am glad to tell you th
There's nothing really wrong with this series, but it's just not clicking for me. I wanted to try at least one book (view spoiler), but I think there's just not enough whatever here for me. Whatever mysterious thing it is that makes a book work for me.

One plotline did bug me in this one. (view spoiler)
Nov 09, 2009 Jacqie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Tasha Alexander is still coming along as a writer, but I enjoy escaping into Victorian times with Lady Emily and her Colin. In this book, a honeymoon in Constantinople is interrupted by intrigue. There was a lot of lovey-doveyness, but hey, it was a honeymoon, after all. Constantinople may have been the best character in the book; it came to life with all its sights, sounds, and smells. Most of what I enjoyed about the book was seeing Constantinople through Lady Emily's eyes. The mystery was not ...more
Most of this book was entirely too coincidental to be even remotely believable, and I was frustrated that I had the murderer (and mystery) figured out pages and pages before our sleuth had even whispered, "...hmmm." It took her FOREVER to clue in. The ending echoed a plot development in one of Raybourn's books, and I was disappointed for the same reason: I wish the author hadn't chosen the easy solution for her character. I would've loved to read more about how a Victorian woman would (could?) b ...more
Sep 10, 2009 Shannon rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Dec 15, 2014 Betty rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Lady Emily and Colin are on their honeymoon in this historical mystery set in Constantinople, Turkey. On the Orient Express they meet an English diplomat who is missing Embassy papers. Arriving at their destination they are invites to watch an opera with the sultan. One of the harem girls is murder. The girl is English who was kidnapped as a child. Colin and Emily are the investigators for England. Emily is allowed in the harem to question the occupants. The story flows smoothly and the characte ...more
Wasn't the best of the series, but still a fun read.
Nov 16, 2011 Carolyn rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
The settings in this series of books are like characters themselves. This time we are taken to the waning days of the Ottoman empire and treated to descriptions of Constantinople. This is what saved the book for me, as the main character has become a real pain. In the first book, And Only To Deceive, we met a woman who was discovering her own intelligence and aptitude. She was intriguing and likable because she was open to discovering new things about herself and others. Now we have a woman who ...more
Sep 18, 2009 Shanda rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Even on her honeymoon with the dashing Colin Hargreaves Lady Emily can't resist becoming involved in solving the murder of a concubine at the Sultan's palace in the exotic Ottoman empire. To complicate matters, Lady Emily thinks she may be pregnant and struggles with losing her freedom to a husband who may become overprotective in this situation.

While I loved the first line of this book,

"It is always a mistake to underestimate the possibilities of a train comaprtment",

the rest just fell flat f
Let me say that the main reason I keep reading Tasha Alexander's books is that I feel she takes particular care with her main character's ability to have complicated emotions. What keeps me coming back for more, quite frankly, is not the mystery part of her plot (which is often a bit coincidental and is always quite complicated -- though that's not always a bad thing). It's only sometimes the historical setting (oddly, I preferred her ability to convey a sense of time and place in her earlier wo ...more
In the fourth installment of the Lady Emily mystery series, Tears of Pearl, Tasha Alexander takes us on an exciting journey to Constantinople, where Lady Emily and her now-husband Colin Hargreaves (I’m so glad they finally tied the knot!) attempt to relax on a peaceful honeymoon away from the hustle and bustle of daily life. However, Lady Emily can’t seem to catch a break, as mystery and suspense seem to have traveled with her (and her luggage) to Constantinople. Following an evening at the oper ...more
I hate to say it, but after enjoying the first three books very much, this was a let down and a bit of a disappointment. I think this was partly due to the setting - the Ottoman Empire of the Victorian era; not a culture that holds a lot in interest for me. Unfortunately, the lead characters, Lady Emily and her new husband, Colin Hargreaves, were also disappointing.

Lady Emily is still set on maintaining her independence and becoming a partner to her husband in investigations and service to thei
Mar 01, 2016 Lia rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I'll admit it wasn't my favorite of the books this far into the series, but I don't think it was as terrible as a lot of recent reviewers claimed. It was slightly longer than the previous novels, but lacked the same amount of cluesy-ness as the first three books. There was certainly a good deal of running around and detective work going, but it was mostly in the mind of our heroine. The minor characters were less developed than previous plotlines, though yay for Margaret getting to tag along.
Sep 08, 2009 Carrie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I am so glad that Lady Emily and Colin have returned to my life, especially in my city of fantasy--Constantinople. I loved the development of the relationship between the honeymooning couple, especially as they each came to see that their actions worried the other. I also really loved the glimpses of the historic city as it was before WWI, and the way of life that was their way for generations.

Thanks, Tasha, for another great installment. How long must we wait for another grand adventure? Will t
They just keep getting better. This one interfered with my sleep.
Aug 05, 2015 D.w. rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, reviewed
What started as a interesting view of the later Victorian world has fallen.

Not in this case Ms Alexander's research in the Sublime Porte and more specifically, the Harem of the Sultan. Just, WHY?

So what if after 20 years the daughter of an english man is found to be a Harem Concubine. The Sultan has plenty of agents that investigate murders, ones that he trusts. Not an English female outsider who we find uncovers that many men seem to have access to the Harem as well as as a reader, knowing who
Mar 16, 2015 Darla rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
(Genre:Fiction/mystery/historical-Victorian) Low 3 stars. Hmm. Again, not my favorite installment in this series. I was a little disappointed. Not bad, just not as good as I would have liked, for several reasons.
This installment follows Lady Emily and her new husband on their honeymoon to Turkey. They immediately stumble into a murder mystery that involves the death of a girl in the sultan's harem who turns out to be the long lost daughter of a British diplomat in the region. His daughter was ki
I love this series, but this was probably my least favourite book so far.

I was really torn by this book. The same things I have loved about Emily in past books annoyed me here. That's not really fair, because Emily wasn't doing anything she hasn't done before, so it's me and not her. But her determination to judge another culture and subvert the structure of that culture, laudable though her intentions were [and I even agree with them at heart] I found her behaviour a bit irksome here. As I sai
Morgan Erwin
Jan 13, 2016 Morgan Erwin rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Nov 22, 2014 Sarah rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Ironically, after saying that one really needs to read this series from the beginning in my last review from this series, what’s the next book I grab to dive into?! Book 4! Really, Sarah, really?... Yes, OK, I did the big bad and completely did what I myself said not to do. But you know what? It actually wasn't as big an error as it could have been.

I got a real feel for the characters and their relationships in this one, something that was sorely lacking in Book 9. The whole reason I grabbed thi
Angela Powell
I'm really wavering between 3 and 4 stars which frustrates me since this series is my new favorite thing. Here's the wavering reasons:
When a couple in a series get married, the sparkle and shine seems to go away. I like the idea of Colin and Emily, especially since he's treating her as an equal and allows her to continue her mystery solving, but I always loved the 'what if's' in the last three books. What if she stays independently single in Victorian society? What if Jeremy sticks around a litt
Laura Carter
Apr 12, 2014 Laura Carter rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was probably my favorite Lady Emily book so far. The plot was excellent, the location exotic, and the characters were interesting and ambiguous. All throughout the book my opinion changed on who the bad guy was, how the mystery would be solved, and what would happen. I enjoyed the relationship between Colin and Emily in this book, although I'm not sure that even someone as imaginarily perfect as Colin would have been so agreeable to Emily going off alone in a foreign city in this time perio ...more
Jan 26, 2014 Brianna rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery-series
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
The whole storyline of this book is unrealistic, especially for the time period. Lady Emily and her new husband Colin Hargreaves are headed for Constantinople where they will spend their honeymoon. While on the train, they meet and assist a fellow Englishman Sir Richard. With the permission of the British Embassy, they are soon investigating the murder of Sir Richard's kidnapped daughter.

Lady Emily is allowed into the sultan's palace and into the harem where she insists on questioning the sultan
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Tasha Alexander is the New York Times bestselling author of the Lady Emily series and the novel ELIZABETH: THE GOLDEN AGE. She attended the University of Notre Dame, where she studied English and Medieval History. Her work has been nominated for numerous awards and has been translated into more than a dozen languages. She and her husband, novelist Andrew Grant, divide their time between Chicago an ...more
More about Tasha Alexander...

Other Books in the Series

Lady Emily (1 - 10 of 11 books)
  • And Only to Deceive (Lady Emily, #1)
  • A Poisoned Season (Lady Emily, #2)
  • A Fatal Waltz (Lady Emily, #3)
  • Dangerous to Know (Lady Emily, #5)
  • A Crimson Warning (Lady Emily, #6)
  • Death in the Floating City (Lady Emily, #7)
  • Behind the Shattered Glass (Lady Emily, #8)
  • The Counterfeit Heiress (Lady Emily, #9)
  • The Adventuress (Lady Emily, #10)
  • A Terrible Beauty (Lady Emily, #11)

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