The Stockholm Octavo

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The Stockholm Octavo

Format:  Hardcover,

416 pages

Publisher: Harpercollins

Publish Date: Oct 2012

ISBN-13: 9780061995347

ISBN-10: 0061995347

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Book Information

The following content was provided by the publisher.

Life is close to perfect for Emil Larsson, a self-satisfied bureaucrat in the Office of Customs and Excise in 1791 Stockholm. He is a true man of the Town--a drinker, card player, and contented bachelor--until one evening when Mrs. Sofia Sparrow, a fortune-teller and proprietor of an exclusive gaming parlor, shares with him a vision she has had: a golden path that will lead him to love and connection. She lays an Octavo for him, a spread of eight cards that augur the eight individuals who can help him realize this vision--if he can find them.

Emil begins his search, intrigued by the puzzle of his Octavo and the good fortune Mrs. Sparrow's vision portends. But when Mrs. Sparrow wins a mysterious folding fan in a card game, the Octavo's deeper powers are revealed. For Emil it is no longer just a game of the heart; collecting his eight is now crucial to pulling his country back from the crumbling precipice of rebellion and chaos. Set against the luminous backdrop of late eighteenth-century Stockholm, as the winds of revolution rage through the great capitals of Europe, The Stockholm Octavo brings together a collection of characters, both fictional and historical, whose lives tangle in political conspiracy, love, and magic in a breathtaking debut that will leave you spellbound.

Specifications

Publisher: Harpercollins
Publish Date: Oct 2012
ISBN-13: 9780061995347
ISBN-10: 0061995347
Format: Hardcover
Number of Pages: 416
Shipping Weight (in pounds): 1.4
Product in Inches (L x W x H): 6.25 x 9.25 x 1.5

Reviews

Review by Library Journal (2012-06-01)

Set in Sweden in the final years of the rule of the reforming king Gustav III (1771-92), this is the fantastic story of young man about town Emil Larsson. Gambling salon heiress Mrs. Sparrow, who claims to see into the future, lays out an octavo for Emil, eight cards that, if properly read, will identify the eight individuals who can assist him in his pursuit of love and riches. What a strange story ensues! Plotters conspire to kill or kidnap the king, while across the continent France slides close to anarchy.

A wicked countess collects fans and uses them to mesmerize her allies and poison her rivals. Assorted eccentrics appear and disappear. The novel never crosses the boundary into fantasy; rather, it's about a time when magic was still taken seriously by the most cultured people in society.

Verdict: This rollicking adventure story reads at times like a fairy tale, with Good Guys and Bad Guys and obstacles to be recognized and overcome. It's all quite fun. As either historical novel or adventure story, this clever first novel should appeal to a broad range of readers.

-David Keymer, Modesto, CA

(c) Copyright 2012. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Book description

Stockholm, 1791. Emil Larsson is a self-satisfied bureaucrat in the Office of Customs and Excise. He is a true man of the Town–a drinker, card player, and contented bachelor. That is until Mrs. Sofia Sparrow, fortune-teller and proprietor of an exclusive gaming parlor, shares with him a vision she has had of a golden path that will lead Emil to love and connection. She lays an Octavo for him, a spread of eight cards that augur the eight individuals who can help him realize this vision–if he can find them.

But as Emil eagerly searches for his eight, he comes to the startling realization that finding them is no longer just a game of the heart, but crucial to pulling his country back from the crumbling precipice of rebellion and chaos.

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