WICKED WIDOW by Amanda Quick


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Quick delivers another reliable Regency romantic-suspense story, her second in a series (I Thee Wed, 1999, etc.) about

masters of the ancient philosophy and martial art of Vanza.

Along with a load of useful rules for living, Artemis Hunt was taught shrewdness and craftiness by monks in the Garden

Temples of Vanzagara. He intends to use these skills to avenge the death of his lover, Catherine, a young actress killed escaping

from three debauched rakes who raped her. In London, Artemis makes a fortune as the "Dream Merchant," the proprietor of

pleasure gardens called the Magic Pavilions. With the help of his "Eyes and Ears," loyal street urchins who search the city for

bits of juicy gossip, he plots to ruin the perpetrators and then revel in their total destruction. Quick, however, has other plans

for Artemis. She places in his way Madeline Deveridge, the "Wicked Widow," the daughter of another Vanza master. Madeline

earned her epithet after she killed her husband, Renwick, who poisoned her father and threatened to murder her aunt. Madeline

believes Renwick may still be alive and wants Artemis to help find him. When it appears she and her aunt may not be safe,

Artemis invites them into his home. (The gambling clubs have bets on their books awarding œ1,000 to any man who can live

through a night with the W.W.) Though Madeline has professed no taste for any "crackbrain" eccentric of the Vanza persuasion,

she observes immediately that Artemis is "mature yet agile." During an agile encounter in the library, he discovers, to his

surprise, that Madeline and Renwick never consummated their union; she might be a widow, but she was never a wife. The

lovers sort out the problems created when two strong personalities attempt to merge, and together they thwart their rather hollow

Vanzagarian nemesis.

Quick always choreographs a pretty dance between lovers involved in a mutual challenge. Her legion of fans won’t be


Pub Date: April 4th, 2000
ISBN: 0-553-10087-4
Page count: 304pp
Publisher: Bantam
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15th, 2000


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