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A Curious Beginning (Veronica Speedwell, #1)
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Featured Series and Cozies > Veronica Speedwell (A Curious Beginning) by Deanna Raybourn

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message 1: by Nell (last edited Sep 02, 2020 04:21AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Nell | 2790 comments Mod
The member's choice series for September 2020 is Veronica Speedwell by Deanna Raybourn. The MC is a lepidopterist in 1880s London, England. The first book in the series is A Curious Beginning.
A Curious Beginning (Veronica Speedwell, #1) by Deanna Raybourn

Other books in the series are:
A Perilous Undertaking (Veronica Speedwell, #2) by Deanna Raybourn A Treacherous Curse (Veronica Speedwell, #3) by Deanna Raybourn A Dangerous Collaboration (Veronica Speedwell, #4) by Deanna Raybourn A Murderous Relation (Veronica Speedwell, #5) by Deanna Raybourn

A Perilous Undertaking
A Treacherous Curse
A Dangerous Collaboration
A Murderous Relation

Discuss any book in the series in this thread.

QNPoohBear | 644 comments I love this series but I wouldn't classify it as a cozy. Newcomers be aware that while there are amateur sleuths, humor, some quirky characters, the mysteries are rather dark. This author has a knack for uncovering the seedier side of Victorian life. Mostly I was reading for the Veronica-Stoker relationship. The newest mystery wasn't much of a mystery. I'm curious to see where Veronica and Stoker go next in terms of their relationship. I don't love him as much as Brisbane, the half Gypsy brooding private inquiry agent in Silent in the Grave but Veronica is not as immature as Julia.

message 3: by Lea (new) - rated it 5 stars

Lea Day | 29 comments I have read this book as well and this is more a steampunk Victorian mystery genre. Great book but not really a cozy. I encourage you to step outside your comfort zone and give it a try. This is a great author.

MadameZelda | 622 comments I agree with both of you ladies. Not a cozy, however,. great!

message 5: by Icewineanne (last edited Sep 02, 2020 10:54PM) (new) - added it

Icewineanne | 53 comments As other members said, this series is definitely not a cozy series, but rather a good (dark at times), historical mystery series.

message 6: by Nell (last edited Sep 03, 2020 05:27AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Nell | 2790 comments Mod
My definition of a cozy is broader than those expressed and may be what others consider a traditional mystery. (The term Malice Domestic uses for the Agatha Awards - no explicit sex, no excessive violence.) It includes books with more depth to the characters and that may address serious issues.

Here's a link to the thread where members share a variety of views on what they think a cozy is

message 7: by Nell (last edited Sep 03, 2020 05:18AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Nell | 2790 comments Mod
I've read the first three in the series. Next up for me is A Dangerous Collaboration

From my review of A Treacherous Curse:

"Set in Victorian England, Veronica Speedwell is a lepidopterist (butterfly hunter). She's an endearing mix of smart, self-educated scientist and world traveler who is often naïve and clueless in her personal relationships. Her colleague, Stoker Templeton-Vane, is also a natural historian. The mystery was compelling and the relationship between the main characters is spiced with great dialogue and repartee. There are scenes in each book that were LOL. Both she and her ally, Stoker, have secrets in their pasts and complicated family relationships - an intriguing backstory that is gradually revealed and that impacts the plot in each book."

message 8: by Meg (new)

Meg (makeli2) | 986 comments Nell wrote: "I've read the first three in the series. Next up for me is A Dangerous Collaboration

From my review of A Treacherous Curse:

"Set in Victorian England, Veronica Spe..."

Great review! I probably won't get to my copies this year, but definitely moving them up.

QNPoohBear | 644 comments (The term Malice Domestic uses for the Agatha Awards - no explicit sex, no excessive violence.)

Veronica is still not entirely cozy by that definition.

A Perilous Undertaking is for mature audiences only. A Netflix adaptation would go all out and even a TV version would have to be on cable.

A Treacherous Curse is more cozy. I liked that one best.

A Dangerous Collaboration is the coziest of them all. The end tore me to pieces and I NEEDED the next one right then and there! I love the relationship between Veronica and Stoker.

A Murderous Relation has quite a lot of violence. (view spoiler)

Alice | 472 comments Excellent series of books. I have read them all

message 11: by jaxnsmom (new) - added it

jaxnsmom | 2458 comments Mod
I enjoyed watching the relationship between Veronica and Stoker, and the mystery for the most part. But I couldn't decide if I liked Veronica. It annoyed me that after all of her adventures and modern "unladylike" habits she kept claiming she was ordinary and no more interesting than anyone else.

Heather L  (wordtrix) | 13 comments I was up until 2 am this morning finishing the first book, because I had to see how it ended and I was so close to the end. While I have books 3&4, I am missing the second, so it will be a while before I get to them. While I enjoyed the book and the developing relationship between Veronica and Stoker, one thing I’ve noticed from other books by this author is that she suffers from a serious case of “just then-itis.” Ugh! It’s annoying and unnecessary filler that weakens the writing and constantly pulls me out of the story. It appalls the English major in me, and my internal editor wants to cross it out of every text. Which, of course, you cannot do when it’s an ebook. Sigh.... 🙄

message 13: by Zermeena (new) - added it

Zermeena | 323 comments It's the last day of the month and I'm on page 90 of A Curious Beginning (Veronica Speedwell, #1) by Deanna Raybourn . I'm not particularly enjoying this book so I'm going to bail on it. I just can't relate to Victoria or Stoker on any level and I don't particularly like either of them. I guess this one is just not my cup of tea.

Michaela | 69 comments I only started it yesterday, and don´t like it so much either, but I´m only 14% in.

Michaela | 69 comments I finished the first book after a week, and was quite disappointed. Not only would I not call it cozy (more out of a feeling), perhaps rather historical, but it was dragging in the first half at least - esp. (view spoiler), then a highly unlikely twist and an unsatisfying end. Not liking the persons either, and I though of putting it on my DNF list more than once.

QNPoohBear | 644 comments No I don't consider this series "cozy" in the traditional sense. I do love the chemistry between Veronica and Stoker and how their relationship builds over the series.

Jeannine (jeanninereads) | 8 comments I’m very late to this thread, but was interested in the “is it cozy” discussion. I thought that because Deanna Raybourn does a “fade to black” for all intimate scenes and the crime are always discovered (vs described i. Present tense), that her work would fit the cozy genre. Of course, a lot of the books take place in London

I’ve raced through all of Raybourn’s books in about a month and I love her style...charming, witty banter gets me every time!

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