Soul of an Angel

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Young and beautiful, Fenice Zucchar lives in opulent splendor on the world's richest island. The pampered daughter of a wealthy and powerful owner of ocean-going merchant vessels, Fenice's soul yearns for the freedom of the sea—for the adventures and breathtaking sights and sounds that await her far from Venice, her velvet prison. Determined to flee, she feigns an audacious kidnapping and stows away on one of her brother's ships on the very eve of her own arranged wedding.

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Overview

Young and beautiful, Fenice Zucchar lives in opulent splendor on the world's richest island. The pampered daughter of a wealthy and powerful owner of ocean-going merchant vessels, Fenice's soul yearns for the freedom of the sea—for the adventures and breathtaking sights and sounds that await her far from Venice, her velvet prison. Determined to flee, she feigns an audacious kidnapping and stows away on one of her brother's ships on the very eve of her own arranged wedding.

But her plans are dashed to bits when, upon discovery, her brother refuses to offer her safe quarter—and abandons the young noblewoman in the teeming port of Varna, just as panic is descending upon the city. For death has come to this place, spawning stories told in hushed, frightened whispers in the night—a being of strange, alluring power and dark sensuality who has chosen Fenice, offering her more freedom than she could know in a hundred lifetimes.

Subjugation is the price this mesmirizing creature demands fro the exquisite renegade's eternal pleasure, as Fenice follows her Dark Lord to his mountain domain, where she is to live...and die. But another is waiting there already, lurking in the shadows of the imposing castle keep: a lovely and crazed consort already corrupted by Dracula's terrible passion...a once-mortal girl named Kelene, late of a distant realm called Greece who could prove to be Fenice's staunchest ally and sister, or her most fearsome adversary.

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Editorial Reviews

Beth Amos
A well-respected and highly regarded chronicler of vampire lore, Chelsea Quinn Yarbro has struck gold yet again with The Soul of an Angel , the second in her trilogy featuring the three "weird sisters" who briefly appeared in Bram Stoker's classic Dracula . Yarbro's first in the series, The Angry Angel , tells the story of young Kelene, a woman-child who escapes the horrors of invading forces only to become Dracula's first mistress. In The Soul of an Angel , a now petulant and seductive Kelene is forced to defend her status when she is joined by the second "sister" -- a 17-year-old by the name of Fenice.

Fenice Zucchar was born into gentility in Venice at a time when women were truly believed to be the "gentler" sex. The goal young Fenice's parents have set for her is to marry well and marry soon, a simple enough task in that there are several interested suitors and Fenice need only choose one. But Fenice yearns for adventure, enthralled by her three brothers' exploits on the high seas in the family's merchant ships. Determined to see and experience the world beyond Venice before settling into a life of marital mediocrity, the spirited and headstrong Fenice concocts a desperate plan when her father forces her to choose a husband.

On the eve of her planned wedding, Fenice disguises herself as a boy, then fakes her own kidnapping by writing a ransom note and ransacking her room. She slips away in the middle of the night and sneaks onto the family's newest boat, which is set to sail on its maiden voyage the next morning under the guidance of Fenice's brother Ercole. Fenice hides in one of the cargo holds, planning to reveal herself only when the ship has sailed far enough that her brother will be unable to turn back.

The plan works, but Fenice is frustrated by the confines of her hiding place and by her rapidly dwindling food stores. She soon becomes lonely and restless, and strange dreams haunt her sleep -- dreams of a craggy wilderness and a mountain fortress, of flying with a hawk-faced man with an imposing, princely air. When her food finally runs out, Fenice realizes her adventure might be more than she bargained for, particularly when she is caught by the ship's cook as she tries to sneak into the galley.

Outraged by Fenice's foolish and selfish deception, Ercole puts her off at the next port of call -- the city of Varna -- and delivers her over to a convent where he hopes the nuns can elicit both remorse and common sense from her by the time he returns. But it doesn't take long for the stifling existence in the convent to drive Fenice to desperation, and she escapes mere days after her arrival. Donning her boy's disguise again, she heads for the street market in search of food and employment, offering her accounting and language skills to various shopkeepers. She is able to find work but ends up giving most of her earnings to a band of thugs who roam the market beating up those who refuse to pay. Then the market begins to shut down as people flee on the heels of several strange murders in which the victims are found drained of blood.

Even more unsettling are Fenice's continuing dreams -- the same dreams she had on the ship -- which are now more real, vivid, and disturbing than ever. The strange man she keeps seeing in these dreams is both alluring and repellent, and as the days progress he invades Fenice's thoughts by day as well as by night.

When the strong-willed Fenice tires of being bullied by the market thugs, she ends up in a scuffle with one of them and bests him handily. But her victory is short-lived: The rest of the gang targets her for revenge, and the situation escalates into a matter of life and death. From out of a night's fog comes the man from Fenice's dreams, his strange allure now more compelling than ever. Fenice learns that this stranger can offer her the very adventure and freedom she longs for, though at a terrible price. But with nowhere else to turn, she follows him to his mountaintop castle, where she will exchange her life and her soul for the promise of eternal pleasure.

The Soul of an Angel is a dark, erotic tale of wicked pleasures and bargained souls, real history and timeless legend, sensual power and corrupted passions. Yarbro draws her characters with the finest of detail, imbuing them with a life force that transcends both the story and the page. Exquisitely crafted and wholly unforgettable, this second in Yarbro's Sisters of the Night series portends that this fascinating trilogy will be as immortal as Dracula himself.

--Beth Amos Beth Amos is the author of several mainstream suspense thrillers, including Second Sight, Eyes of Night and Cold White Fury . She lives in Richmond, Virginia, and is at work on her next novel.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780380974016
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 3/1/1999
  • Series: Sisters of the Night Series
  • Edition description: 1st Edition
  • Pages: 384
  • Product dimensions: 6.68 (w) x 9.59 (h) x 1.33 (d)

Table of Contents

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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 24, 2005

    Hi

    I though Fenice's time with her family was more interesting that Kelene's. Although I thought it draged on and on with them. About 3/4 of the book had nothing to do with Dracula. Still it was good, and you should definatly read it.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 31, 2000

    Remarkable and worth reading

    I would have given this novel 5 Stars-- but that praise belongs with the first book of this series, 'The Angry Angel'. Yarbro has outdone herself with this series. Her research and integrity are enough to make this book worth reading-- but it has much much more to give as well. Do read it.

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