Customer Reviews for

The House of Velvet and Glass

Average Rating 3.5
( 107 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(34)

4 Star

(36)

3 Star

(14)

2 Star

(15)

1 Star

(8)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

17 out of 17 people found this review helpful.

I really enjoyed this story. There was so much to like. very goo

I really enjoyed this story. There was so much to like. very good book!

posted by bookholiday on May 30, 2012

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Most Helpful Critical Review

6 out of 21 people found this review helpful.

Not on sale...

Says 2.99 but when you go to buy it says 13.00

posted by 9376962 on May 30, 2012

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  • Posted May 30, 2012

    I Also Recommend:

    I really enjoyed this story. There was so much to like. very goo

    I really enjoyed this story. There was so much to like. very good book!

    17 out of 17 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 10, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    What’s left of the Allston family of Boston’s Back B

    What’s left of the Allston family of Boston’s Back Bay is still reeling from the loss of Matriarch Helen and youngest child Eulah who had the misfortune of being on the Titanic. Each remaining member is dealing with the loss and going about life in their own way. Sybil, the oldest has taken over running the house and furthering her spinster lifestyle, but it’s in the séance parlor of Miss Dee where she finds the most solace and closest to her lost family as she deals with the guilt she can’t seem to shed and knows that speaking of it to her stoic father Captain Lan Allston does no good. In the midst of all this it seems her younger brother Harlan has gotten himself kicked out of school, returned home only to get into deeper trouble. The troubles with Harlan also brings back an old family friend of the Allston’s, Benton Derby who was once much more to Sybil than just a friend and who is now in the position as a professor to help Harlan back in the classroom and out of trouble, but the complications continue as Harlan’s paramour Dovie arrives on the scene. Sybil joins forces with Ben to help her wayward brother but also turns to her faith in the occult for succor which has she and Ben butting heads. And as they seek answers journeying through the mystical psychic world they find only more questions and deeper puzzles, and some of those puzzles are leading back to a deep dark family secret.
    Katherine Howe burst on the literary scene with her debut novel The Physick Book of Deliverance Dane and now brings us another blockbuster in The House of Velvet and Glass. She took me on board the Titanic, through the streets of Shanghai and the elegant and eclectic Boston of early 20th century America and as she did so I could see in my mind’s eye the scenes, the people and the happenings around them. As she spun her tale of misfortune and of catastrophe she showed me also the lengths that we will go to find comfort, she showed me the strength it takes to go on in the light of loss and she once again went into the preternatural world and did it with aplomb. She introduced me to some amazing characters that will stay with me for a long time with Sybil, Ben and the Captain leading the cast but not foreshadowing her co-stars, Harlan and Dovie and finally her cameo appearances by Helen and Eulah and we can’t forget Baiji. Her narrative is all reminiscent of the era she’s portraying and done beautifully and vividly expressive with such attention to detail that her research is obvious not only in the industrial miracles of the times but also the costume and attitudes brought out in her characters. And finally this is a love story, of familial love and romantic love, it’s a story of the right thing to do in the face of opposition and the love of oneself.
    If you’re a fan of historical literature, family drama, or just a great story this is a novel you should read. If you like just a little woo-woo with your big dose of reality you’ll also find what you’re looking for between the pages of this novel.
    Ms. Howe thank you for another wonderful all expenses paid trip with your wonderful storytelling and imagination and I can’t wait for the next one.

    16 out of 28 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 13, 2012

    Reading this book is akin to time travel. A page turner. If hi

    Reading this book is akin to time travel. A page turner. If history class used books like this, I would have done so much better. Inciteful. Masterfully written.

    15 out of 17 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 27, 2012

    I Also Recommend:

    I bought this based on my friends recommendations, it is usually

    I bought this based on my friends recommendations, it is usually not MY type of book. But, I was pleasantly surprised, I actually enjoyed it. Didn't find it boring as I thought i would. I am a older Christian lady, and like light romance and suspense...but this really was good it was so far out of the realm of what I normally read and yet I found it rascinating and intensely interesting. The characters were three dimensional and likeable, and the dialogue realistic. Good job. I really enjoyed it, glad I bought it. I'd recommend it to others too

    14 out of 15 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 13, 2012

    Loved her first book -- currently devouring this new work -- can

    Loved her first book -- currently devouring this new work -- can't wait for whatever comes next!

    7 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 30, 2012

    Not on sale...

    Says 2.99 but when you go to buy it says 13.00

    6 out of 21 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 30, 2012

    Price

    Why does the special list it as 2.99 then 13.00 when i hit buy now? Bait and switch irratates me!

    5 out of 19 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 22, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    l was fortunate to read an advanced copy of Katherine Howe's deb

    l was fortunate to read an advanced copy of Katherine Howe's debut novel in the First Look book club here on B&N. So I was anxiously awaiting her follow up. I'll be honest, I wasn't sure about the Titanic theme. Now that I have finished it, I can tell you that she exceeded my expectations.

    Based after the Titanic sunk, this novel follows one particular family who lost loved ones on the Titanic. Flash backs take you to the Titanic but Katherine does a wonderful job of making it the magical experience it was without getting too in depth on the horror that happened. This actually is what makes the ending so amazing. As you grow to know these people, you know what is coming, and your heart breaks for them & the people they leave behind. Katherine really captures the emotional wreckage that is often left behind after a tragedy. In that tragedy, there is hope, love & lives that keep moving on.

    Katherine does a magnificent job of capturing the time and even uses real people that were passengers on the ship. She truly does her research & it shows. I couldn't put this down & the next day, I felt myself wanting to pick it up again and felt a twinge of grief knowing I had finished. This is always an indicator of a great novel for me. I am so glad she shared these wonderful characters with us & her talent continues to blossom. I can't wait for her next novel already!

    5 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 14, 2012

    I Also Recommend:

    Loved, loved, loved her first book. Would love to read this, but

    Loved, loved, loved her first book. Would love to read this, but why is it 15.99 at B&N's nookBooks and 12.99 on Kindle

    4 out of 12 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 10, 2012

    Slow

    I was disappointed in this. The action is frustratingly slow and the plot all over the place. I wasn't even sure what her main theme was until at least halfway in. Wouldnt recommend it.

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 10, 2012

    Quiet Character Study

    This book is more of a character study than a story. It is well written but not much seems to happen. You get a good picture of the era but the story is glimpsed in pieces as if through the "scrying glass" the main character uses. I enjoyed it but found myself deliberately picking it up rather than drawn to it. I liked her first book better.

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 17, 2012

    Disappointed...

    Based on the majority of reviews I was lead to believe this was a book of some substance. I was very disappointed. The author's attempt at mystery and suspense was just a lot of hopping around time and locale. Perhaps this confusion as to relevancy was supposed to draw the reader in to wonder what would happen next? In any regards this book can be tolerable if you get it for free, but it would be a waste of your time and money to pay more than a buck for it. The author gave mixed messages. I couldn't root for anyone nor could I invest in the characters' fates. This is no classic in the making.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 24, 2012

    Loved it

    Katherin Howe is a gifted story teller, I couldn't stop reading it. I think it was even better than her first book.

    2 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 7, 2012

    Fantastic!

    I love this author. Just the right amount of magical realism to keep it plausible.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 2, 2012

    Good Summer Reading

    Having read this suthor's previous book - the Physick Book of Deliverance Dane - I sort of knew what to expect, and I was not disabppointed. She moves well through each of the timelines in play, and gives each it's own distinctive flavor, but weaves them together well too. The characters are well-conceived. The subject matter - seances, fortune telling - may not be everyone's cup of tea, but if you like books with a tiny bit of a twist, I would recommend this one.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 21, 2012

    Don't miss it

    Beautifully written and historically accurate but I missed the connection with a contemporary first person narrator.Terrific twist! Looking for more from Ms Howe.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 18, 2012

    Loved this book! I highly recommend it!

    I really enjoyed the twists and turns of this book. There is a perfect mix of reality and fantasy. The main characters are well-developed and likeable. Katherine Howe spins a good yarn. I would definitely read more books written by her.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 4, 2012

    Worth hanging on...

    As a voracious and constant reader I've noticed that when switching genres between books, it can take a chapter or so before I fall completely into the "reality" of the new book.
    I started this one immediately after finishing the 2nd volume of "The Song of Fire and Ice" series currently made into a series on HBO. The difference between the moods of the two books couldn't be greater.
    For that reason, I think, and because of the plot line of this book, I honestly had to perseverve through the beginning third of the book. It just didn't seem to be actually getting anywhere.
    At that point, however, I found myself becoming much more interested as the plot actually began to move forward.
    I'm very glad I did persevere because from then on it became better and more interesting with each chapter. With one small complaint that I found the last sentence a bit...confusing, I ended up enjoying this book very much.
    Having also read this author's first book and enjoying it, I do feel this one just flowed better, more smoothly.
    I will definitely watch for her new works.

    1 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 28, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    I ruly enjoyed reading this book! It was very well researched wi

    I ruly enjoyed reading this book! It was very well researched with some fun additions. I really felt like I was living in the decade of 1910-20. I was surprised to learn there has been little written about his period. It was a fun escape!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 26, 2014

    Velvetstars Kits

    All kits are taken, this is the final draft of all their bio's! <p> Goldenkit [Named after Goldenstripe] <br>
    Silver and white tabby with golden coloured eyes. More like Nightfang, calm, quiter, loyal, likes to learn. <br>

    Seakit [Named for a reason no one can know!] <br>
    Black tom with white paws and half white tail. Green eyes Thoughtfull, cheerful, very loving and loyal, the most like Nightfang <br>

    Pridekit [Named after a now deceased friend, and one of Velvets favorite names] <br>
    A white tom with one silver front leg(left) and silver ears. His eyes are toasty golden colored. Very outgoing, adventurous and often gets into trouble. <br>

    Halfkit [Named for her appearance] <br>
    Front half white and back half black. Bright green eyes. Most like Velvetstar, stubborn, spirited, but cheerful and happy, loves her family more than anything. <br>

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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