Thursday, April 3, 2014

France Book Tours Review: The Collector of Dying Breaths


From one of America’s most imaginative storytellers comes a passionate tale of love and treachery, spanning the days of Catherine de Medici’s court to the twenty-first century and starring a woman drawn back, time and again, to the past.
In 1533, an Italian orphan with an uncanny knack for creating fragrance is plucked from poverty to become Catherine de Medici’s perfumer. To repay his debt, over the years René le Florentine is occasionally called upon to put his vast knowledge to a darker purpose: the creation of deadly poisons used to dispatch the Queen’s rivals.

But it’s René’s other passion—a desire to reanimate a human breath, to bring back the lives of the two people whose deaths have devastated him—that incites a dangerous treasure hunt five centuries later. That’s when Jac L’Etoile—suffering from a heartache of her own—becomes obsessed with the possibility of unlocking Rene’s secret to immortality.

Soon Jac’s search reconnects her with Griffin North, a man she’s loved her entire life. Together they confront an eccentric heiress whose art collection rivals many museums and who is determined to keep her treasures close at hand, not just in this life but in her next.

Set in the forest of Fontainebleau, crisscrossing the lines between the past and the present, M.J. Rose has written a mesmerizing tale of passion and obsession. This is a gothic tale perfect for fans of Anne Rice, Deborah Harkness, and Diana Galbadon.

My review:

This was an enjoyable read for me.  I'm a big fan of books where the time frame changes throughout the book, so I liked this book because it switched from the reign of Catherine de Medici's in the 1500s to modern times.  There is an element of mystery to book as the modern-day character, Jac, who hails from a family of perfume makers, is trying to figure out how to make a scent using the last breath of various people in the past that was captured and sealed in a bottle.  While she is researching this conquest, she is also trying to figure out if it's a puzzle that is safe to be solved and whether her brother's work on it might have led to his untimely death.

If you like gothic tales, tales set in France, or mysteries, you would enjoy this book.
About the author:
M.J. Rose, is the international bestselling author of 13 novels;Lip Service, In Fidelity, Flesh Tones, Sheet Music, Lying in Bed, The Halo Effect, The Delilah Complex, The Venus Fix,The Reincarnationist, The Memorist, The Hypnotist, The Book of Lost Fragrances, and Seduction.
Rose is also the co-author with Angela Adair Hoy of How to Publish and Promote Online and with Randy Susan Meyers of What to Do Before Your Book Lauch.

She is a founding member and board member of International Thriller Writers and the founder of the first marketing company for authors: She runs the popular blog; Buzz, Balls & Hype.

Getting published has been an adventure for Rose who self-published Lip Service late in 1998 after several traditional publishers turned it down. Editors had loved it, but didn’t know how to position it or market it since it didn’t fit into any one genre.

Frustrated, but curious and convinced that there was a readership for her work, she set up a web site where readers could download her book for $9.95 and began to seriously market the novel on the Internet.

After selling over 2500 copies (in both electronic and trade paper format) Lip Service became the first e-book and the first self-published novel chosen by the LiteraryGuild/Doubleday Book Club as well as being the first e-book to go on to be published by a mainstream New York publishing house.

Rose has been profiled in Time magazine, Forbes, The New York Times, Business 2.0, Working Woman, Newsweek and New York Magazine.

Rose has appeared on The Today Show, Fox News, The Jim Lehrer NewsHour, and features on her have appeared in dozens of magazines and newspapers in the U.S. and abroad, including USAToday, Stern, L’Official, Poets and Writers and Publishers Weekly.

Rose graduated from Syracuse University and spent the ’80s in advertising. She was the Creative Director of Rosenfeld Sirowitz and Lawson and she has a commercial in the Museum of Modern Art in NYC.

She lives in Connecticut with Doug Scofield, a composer, and their very spoiled dog, Winka.


Kelly (She Wears a Red Sox Cap) said...

Hmm, sounds interesting! I don't think I have read something set this far back in history. I also did an project on Catherine de Medici in hs so it would be interesting for that reason as well. Thanks for the review!

Anonymous said...

thanks for your nice review, glad you liked it. Emma

Anonymous said...

I just finished this for Red Letter Reads myself. I liked it quite a bit as well.

Nora said...

that sounds very intriguing! Never would have thought of perfume being made of last breaths....!

Abby said...

Interesting. That's pretty cool about the author!

Sounds like an intriguing read! Was it tough to get into?

I, also like books that jump between 2 parts in history. It's fun to compare the differences in culture between eras...

Jeanie said...

Thanks for the review Lisa. Not sure about this one, but you never know...!

Amber said...

I also really like books that switch back and forth between different times!