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India Black and the Rajah's Ruby

(Madam of Espionage 0.5)

3.84  ·  Rating details ·  443 ratings  ·  50 reviews
India Black uses her wit and wiles as both a madam and a spy, proving she’s the best there is when it comes to undercover work…

Drawn into intrigue by her lover Philip Barrett, India finds herself being used as a pawn to help him steal a valuable jewel. Turning the tables, she proves that India Black answers to no man, no matter how attractive he may be…
Kindle Edition, 62 pages
Published December 31st 2012 by Berkley (first published December 1st 2012)
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3.84  · 
Rating details
 ·  443 ratings  ·  50 reviews

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Jessie  (Ageless Pages Reviews)
Read This Review & More Like It On My Blog!

God, I love this series and this character. I'm not usually one to rate a 30-page novella more than three stars, but when it's India Black, with her trademark hilarious wit and sarcasm, how could I not? She's a smart, adventurous, crafty woman and her exploits are never dull. What the ebook lacks in overall page length, it more than makes up for in sheer entertainment. I always have fun with this character, and while there was no French to enjoy thi
Audra (Unabridged Chick)
It is no secret I adore Carol K. Carr's India Black series. The first book made my top ten of 2010 and the second book was a welcome return to a character I adored.

This is a prequel, of sorts, to the India Black books, set during her days as a prostitute (and not the madam she is in books one, two, and three). About 40 pages long, it details the incident that launched India into her madam-ship, so to speak, and as with the previous India books, has the cheeky humor, droll sexiness, and the braze
Aug 17, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: read-2015
A GR friend, whose opinion I trust, is a big fan of this series. I don't usually go in for period stories, but she didn't steer me wrong on another series, so decided to give this one a shot. Definitely not disappointed! This is a just a short story that is a prequel to the regular series, but it sets up how India was able to go into business for herself and shows her more than a match for any man when it comes to deviousness. Have the first 2 regular books in the series on the way, and based on ...more
May 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy, 2019-books
Oh my dear

Oh oh my lovely India, I knew there was a story behind how you managed to start up your lovely house, but this is just... no wonder you are made to be a spy my dear
Dec 04, 2012 rated it really liked it
And now for a short interlude with my favorite Madame of Espionage, India Black. As proof of my great love for India and her creator, Carol K. Carr, I have made an exception to my "absolutely NO e-copy books" rule. It seems that Penguin has decided that they will no longer provide hard copy ARCs of their products. E-copies or nothing. Well, for anybody but Carol and India, it will be nothing here. But--knowing that the only way I was going to get my, make that eyes on "India Black an ...more
Freda Mans-Labianca
Dec 05, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: historical
I love India Black! Both of the books I have read have been 5 star reviews, and this novella is no different.
Espionage, mystery and a strong female lead character make up this series, and who couldn't love that?! I know it's based in London, but cant help but always picture Russian settings like Catherine the Great's house as the brothel India owns. Crazy, but let's my imagination go wild.
I love the series, both books and this novella. They're different, they're intriguing and they're exciting!
Let this be a cautionary tale to young tarts: no matter how handsome the gift horse, always check its teeth.

A breezy little prequel to the series. India Black narrates (with her usual aplomb) the story of how she got her start as the madam of Lotus House. Nothing gritty or dark, just her trademark cheeky humor. A fun read for fans.
Mar 23, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: owned-read
A great read with a refreshingly no nonsense heroine. I very much look forward to reading more about India Black's adventures.
Sep 06, 2017 rated it really liked it
(3.5 stars) This is a novella that I read on the Kindle that is a prequel to the India Black series. India has a charming, handsome client named Philip. He talks her into a scheme with her posing as his wife so he can close a business deal with a wealthy American, hoping that India can use her feminine wiles to help seal the deal. The two set out for a house party in the country along with a group of other guests. The American owns an enormous ruby which he is convinced to show to the group. Ano ...more
Apr 04, 2019 rated it liked it
Now I know 🧐 how she got started... 💎
Mar 19, 2019 rated it liked it
This was a quick, fun novella that reveals a little bit of India's history.
Sep 07, 2014 rated it liked it
3.5 Stars. India Black, the proprietress of Lotus House, is one of London's most sought-after madams. But before she struck out on her own and made a name for herself, she was simply India Black of Mother Moore's establishment, where her mane of ebony hair, startling blue eyes, flair for witticisms and sharp mind made her one of Moore's most popular earners. Possessing no illusions about life or her place in it, she possesses an extraordinarily good head on her shoulders...but isn't above acknow ...more
Colleen Turner
I reviewed this ebook for

So just how did India Black, madam and sometimes British spy, come by the funds to purchase Lotus House, her elegant and high end brothel? Well, she’d be happy to tell you….

When Philip Barrett, one of India’s regular clients at Mother Moore’s brothel, invites her on an excursion, the sassy, witty tart can’t resist. Always drawn to adventure, the idea of a weekend in the country posing as Philip’s blushing bride while he attempts to close a dea
Dec 23, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-2012
India Black goes undercover in this short story that is a prequel to the rest of stories.

India is working for Mother Moore and she has become to favorite to many gents. When one of her favorites asks for her assistance she just can’t turn him down. She accompanies him on a week long trip to the country where he will meet with a wealthy American. He hopes India’s special talents will get him to agree the the business deal he has in mind. She is surprised to learn the American is in possession of
I was disappointed in a story that I had been dying to hear since I read India's first adventure: how did she acquire the blunt to purchase Lotus House and all its finery, thus becoming mistress of her own life? This shortie answers the question sure enough, but it fell flat almost from the get-go.

We have a country house party, stereotypical dull-headed (but fabulously wealthy) Americans, a plan to con a fortune out of the old Yank, and a gemstone beyond compare. India lands right in the middle
Carol W
Dec 08, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: on-my-kindle
This is another tale from the infamous India Black, Madam and spy for the Victorian Government.
I am not usually interested in crime, spy or action base historical fiction but India Black is one character I always have time for. She is a feisty and well clued up Madam who never fails to entertain me with her stories.
I have said this before, I love her narrative.

In this prequel novella, India shares the secret of how she came by her fortune which enabled her to open her own house. It is short an
Page (One Book At A Time)
Oct 05, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-in-2012
I jumped all over this one. I love India Black and this was the perfect little story to tide me over until the 3rd book is released.

I was a little surprised at India at first. She seemed a little smitten with Philip. Her actions were a little odd to me. She never acts this way with French in later books, and I'm convinced she's head over heels for him. But, in true India fashion she manages to prove that she can best any man.

I loved the storyline and greatly appreciated learning how she was ab
This is an entertaining short story, set before the series starts, that details how India Black came about owning her beloved brothel, The Lotus House. Or rather, how she came about with the means to do so. It also introduces a character that I suspect will come back into play in the next full length book but those who read the last book may also recall Vincent referencing this particular blast from India's past. I must say though that I did miss both French and Vincent in this however, I am loo ...more

This novella struck the perfect note for me. I felt that the author did a great job with setting the back story as to how and where India Black got the start-up money for her brothel. I really enjoyed India's character and laughed my way through this short story.

Recommend? Absolutely. It was fun and satisfying. I didn't feel that the author wrote it as a "gimmick" type of book. It was a quick read and I wanted more!!

Source: Author and NetGalley

Six Sentence Bookish Thoughts #78
© 2013, Staci of Li
Feb 20, 2013 rated it really liked it
As a prequel to the other books in the series, I wanted to start with this one first to see if I wanted to go on with the others. The little bits I'd read of the other books sounds intriguing and I've wanted to try it out but the price set by the publishers for the Kindle versions of India Black is prohibitive and, I think, extortionate. If I like this, however, I'll have to see if I can later pick up a good, inexpensive, used copy on AmazonUK. ***Now that I've finished this prequel I must say I ...more
Apr 13, 2014 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jun 17, 2013 rated it liked it
This was a good back story for readers to learn how India actually became a madam and acquired Lotus House.
It's a good and quick novella before French or the secret agent stuff began.
Phillip is in this novella and he returns in a later book. Now I know who he is and why India acted so toward him in the later book.
It's a must read for those of you who have read the other India Black books.
ZaBeth  Marsh
This novella-length prequel is available only in Kindle Edition and will introduce to you the fast-thinking heroine of the India Black series. This story takes place before India becomes the Madame of the Lotus and still is a working girl at another establishment. She manages to talk her way into a few days off to help out Philip Barrett, a suitor who needs a beautiful woman on his arm during a critical business meeting. Of course, things don’t go as planned.
❂ Jennifer
A novella that serves as a prequel to the India Black series, India Black and the Rajah's Ruby, is a fun, quick read explaining the origins of India Black's starting capital and how she was able to buy and start up Lotus House. This short story does a very entertaining job of clearly illustrating India's quick wit and clever intellect.
Andrea Stoeckel
Jun 05, 2013 rated it really liked it
I was introduced to India Black through reviews on the blog "Random Thoughts from a Book and Opera Lover" and she has yet to steer me wrong.

India Black is the owner of Lotus House and this novella tells how she had the wherewithall to do that. A bit mystery and a witty storyline make you want to know this character better.

Julie Clarahan
Feb 21, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This was great novella that caught us up on how India got the money to get her own place of business. I loved that she was perfectly capable of taking care of herself and didn't let the Victorian times hamper her spirit or her desires to be her own person. I applaud Carol Carr for giving us a character we could root for, laugh with and love with.
May 26, 2013 rated it did not like it
I was surprised at how short thsi was. I was expecting a lively British historical mystery and instead there was no mystery,and no character I wanted to knw more about...
I won't be reading anymore of this series
Jan 01, 2013 rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Kelsey Marie
Dec 02, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: tri-2-10th-grade
actual rating=3.5
India finally describes how she got the finances to start her own brothel, but the plot was rather bare. We don't see her mind work like in all the other books, so the story's surprise ending isn't really believable..
A short read but a fun one explaining a small part of India Black's life.

I would recommend this book to any India Black fan~
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Sinopsis en Español // Synopsis in Spanish 1 1 Feb 28, 2015 10:15AM  

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After a career as a lawyer and corporate executive, Carol K. Carr turned to writing. India Black is her first book. She lives in the Missouri Ozarks with her husband and two German Shepherds.

Other books in the series

Madam of Espionage (4 books)
  • India Black (Madam of Espionage, #1)
  • India Black and the Widow of Windsor (Madam of Espionage, #2)
  • India Black and the Shadows of Anarchy (Madam of Espionage Mystery, #3)
  • India Black and the Gentleman Thief (Madame of Espionage, #4)
“​​Some taxidermist had made the mistake of stuff a pair if squirrels, dressing them in tiny suits and ties, and seating them at a chess board. The Whites had compounded the error by buying this horror.” 0 likes
“​​Some taxidermist had made the mistake of stuff a pair of squirrels, dressing them in tiny suits and ties, and seating them at a chess board. The Whites had compounded the error by buying this horror.” 0 likes
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