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Silhouette in Scarlet

(Vicky Bliss #3)

3.92  ·  Rating details ·  3,434 ratings  ·  117 reviews
One perfect red rose, a one-way ticket to Stockholm, and a cryptic "message" consisting of two Latin words intrigue art historian Vicky Bliss—as they were precisely intended to do.Beautiful, brilliant and, as always, dangerously inquisitive, Vicky recognizes the handiwork of her former lover, the daring jewel thief John Smythe. So she takes the bait, eagerly following Smyt ...more
Mass Market Paperback, 320 pages
Published November 7th 2000 by Avon (first published 1983)
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Showing 1-30
3.92  · 
Rating details
 ·  3,434 ratings  ·  117 reviews

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Lois Bujold
Oct 08, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: readers of the Vicky Bliss series, or romatic suspense of the prior century generally

More Vicky Bliss, whisking us off this time to exotic 1970s Sweden. I am going to end up reading all of these this week, I can tell, my public library making them all instantly available to my tablet.

Ta, L.

Feb 04, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2018
Default 3 stars. Found a copy of this, and it fulfills a 2018 Reading Challenge prompt, so I figured I'd give it a try.

I think I need to resign myself to being an outlier when it comes to this series.
1. I grant that I would never be adventurous enough to go on a mysterious vacation just for the chance to meet up with a thief I'd met a few times and quite liked (I would be a terrible heroine in a suspense novel - I'm far too risk-averse); however, if I ever did decide to travel to another country
May 08, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This may be my favorite of the Vicky Bliss stories. It's that great, almost old-fashioned combo of mystery, adventure and romance, though it's very light on the romance. Peters generally manages a bit of humor, too which is always welcome. Worth reading or rereading.
May 12, 2014 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Having had this book on my to read shelf to read shelf for some time I was quite pleased when I decided to pull it out and proceed.

What a mistake; it is dull and uninteresting from first page to last. The storyline is so poor that I struggled to come to terms with it (perhaps that says more about me than about the book) and although there are passages of good descriptive writing they do not add up to making the book a good, and understandable, read.

Vicky Bliss is a boring character, her co-consp
Ahaha. These are just so fun!

(view spoiler)

Re-read December 2018
Nov 09, 2017 rated it liked it
I didn't enjoy this Nearly as much as the Peabody Series!!!!
Mar 13, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: any mystery reader with a sense of the ridiculous
The trouble with having been in love with a daring jewel thief is that you're easily set up as if to reacquaint yourself with him and instead find yourself in the hands of brigands. Ever happen to you? Well you probably aren't a voluptuous blond so beautiful that you can't get people to take your impressive academic credentials seriously, are you? Vicky Bliss, to our good fortune, is all those things, including, in this volume in an outstanding pickle, which may have put her in need of saving, t ...more
Mar 10, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Finding a good cozy can be a bit like panning for gold. You have to go through a lot of grit to find a nugget worth keeping. Elizabeth Peters' books are those nuggets.

I fully admit I'm biased. I've loved the Elizabeth Peters books since I stumbled across them in elementary school. Vicky's my favorite of her heroines, and Silhouette is a close second to my all-time favorite, Trojan Gold.

Silhouette has wit and charm. Are parts of it well, maybe a bit implausible? Yeah, probably, but for me, that j
Sep 24, 2007 rated it really liked it
Listened to the Recorded Books cassette edition. Not as good as Street of the Five Moons but better than Borrower of the Night. I wish I could give it 3 1/2 stars - that would really be more accurate. Looking forward to listening to the next one in the series. The tone of these very much reminds me of the TV show Remington Steele and John Smythe as the charming, international art thief brings things awfully close. Since I believe the TV series came later, I wonder if the producers had read these ...more
Jun 15, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I fell in love with the Vicky Bliss mystery series during high school, and rereading the books is like curling up on a cozy couch with an old friend -- if that old friend brings intrigue, adventure, foreign travel, a puzzling mystery, and romance all in one package.

Silhouette in Scarlet isn't one of Elizabeth Peters' most clever mysteries (she writes some absolutely brilliant ones), but it's one of my favorites because it's a mad-cap adventure that features John Smythe at his roguish best.
Renee M
Oct 02, 2015 rated it liked it
3.5 Vicky and John are like Audrey Hepburn and Cary Grant in Charade, only blonde. I love the screwball comedy/mystery/romance of it all. And this one is set in Sweden! With plenty of bad guys, a bit of a treasure hunt, dash of danger, plenty of wit, and a fickle feline. Lots of escapist fun!
Stephanie Mohler
Apr 23, 2018 rated it it was ok
Shelves: mystery, read-in-2018
Why am I reading these?
#3 in the series, and John & Vicky are in true form! I'm so happy these are as fun and frothy as I remember them.
John Marsh
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Sep 02, 2018 rated it liked it
I keep trying to like the Vicky Bliss series and I just can’t. This is essentially a kidnapping plot mystery with a twist and it’s objectively pretty well done. I liked that aspect of it, and it’s why I didn’t rate it lower than 3 stars.

What I disliked was the relationship between Vicky and Sir John, and it baffles me that this is what intrigues most fans. They are, quite simply, terrible to each other. I think it’s meant to be “quippy” and perhaps the dialogue is just dated...but what I read i
Jun 02, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book starts out s l o w. I don’t think the actual romp starts until over halfway through! But as usual, Liz P. delivered a great comedic mystery. This one takes place in Sweden, where Vicky Bliss’ ancestors originated. Upon getting a cryptic note from her former lover (“If inconvenient, come anyway”), she jets off to Stockholm and meets a Swedish gentleman, an elderly relative, and a silhouette cutter. Antics and art theft ensue, featuring kind-hearted villains, cats, and one heck of a figh ...more
Mary Beth
Jan 15, 2017 rated it really liked it
The relationship between Vicky and John finally starts crackling in Silhouette, making it a fun, buoyantly suspenseful romp. Max makes for a delightfully creepy villain, and the Swedish locale is more colorful than one might expect.
May 06, 2017 rated it really liked it
This was a re-read for me right after Street of the Five Moons. I liked both of them as well as I remember - lightheaded fun (well, ok, some blood, but not really) with an element of travelogue to it.
Mary Margaret
Dec 01, 2018 rated it liked it
Not my favorite Vicky Bliss - fun to read, but a bit anticlimactic at the end.
Jan 13, 2019 rated it liked it
This was a re-read.
Kate Rupley
Dec 18, 2017 rated it really liked it
Fun read. Not as much history this time but good book.
Apr 19, 2018 rated it liked it
I enjoyed the mystery and the pacing. Still great characters. Nice.
Barbara Douglas
Aug 19, 2017 rated it really liked it
These are so much fun; light, quick and funny, but packing a surprising emotional punch, I find myself re-reading when I am at a loose end.
Dec 16, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Rachel Joy
Sep 15, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I am really enjoying this series.
Vicky Bliss is a delight as the main character and the growing relationship between her and her rake, John, keeps the story interesting and unexpected at times.
Laura Andersen
Dec 23, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: mystery
Re-read, in which Vicky Bliss faces down a gorgeous Viking, a hoard of Swedish gold, and the continuing enigma of John Smyth and his unfortunate habit of making jokes when in grave danger.
Cameron Toney
Dec 30, 2017 rated it it was ok
Vicky Bliss has some charm, but I'm afraid she's no Amelia Peabody, and without that power to hold my attention, the plot seems much too thin.
Ah, well.
Oct 15, 2009 rated it liked it
This was a quick read because (1.) it's a pretty short book, and (2.) I got interested and just couldn't put it down.

Vicky Bliss really is an immensely attractive character. She's fun and rather full of herself. She spends an inordinate amount of time revealing her measurements and discussing her appeal to the opposite sex. She never entertains doubts about her judgments of others or of the situation, and she is always prepared to act when action is required.

Then there is her susceptibility to t
Sep 10, 2008 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
The third Vicky Bliss novel, Silhouette in Scarlet, brings our heroine to Sweden, armed with a mysterious message from her one-time lover John. Once she arrives, Vicky is pulled right into John's latest swindle: an attempt to search a rich recluse's property for a cache of buried treasure. Naturally, things go awry. John is crossed and double-crossed; persons are revealed to be not at all what they seem; Vicky gets to drink in the sights of a charming locale even as the scheme closes in around h ...more
Mar 29, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: reviewed
I have to thank Leila for her Elizabeth Peters week, which introduced me to the author; there were so many gushing testimonials that I had to bump the books to the very top of my TBR list. I regret nothing: the books are hilarious thrillers.

In a way, they're all - both the Vicky Bliss and Jacqueline Kirby stories - more about the characters than about the mysteries, though the mysteries are certainly with merit. It's just that the characters are so enormously entertaining that they become the st
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Goodreads Librari...: Please add cover 2 15 Feb 05, 2015 06:03PM  
  • Into the Darkness
Elizabeth Peters is a pen name of Barbara Mertz. She also wrote as Barbara Michaels as well as her own name. Born and brought up in Illinois, she earned her Ph.D. in Egyptology from the University of Chicago. Mertz was named Grand Master at the inaugural Anthony Awards in 1986 and Grand Master by the Mystery Writers of America at the Edgar Awards in 1998. She lived in a historic farmhouse in Frede ...more

Other books in the series

Vicky Bliss (7 books)
  • The Camelot Caper  (Vicky Bliss, #0.5)
  • Borrower of the Night (Vicky Bliss, #1)
  • Street of the Five Moons (Vicky Bliss, #2)
  • Trojan Gold (Vicky Bliss, #4)
  • Night Train to Memphis (Vicky Bliss, #5)
  • The Laughter of Dead Kings (Vicky Bliss, #6)
“I object to murder. It's just a silly girlish prejudice.” 1 likes
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