Wednesday, January 11, 2017

The Elusive Elixir: An Accidental Alchemist Mystery

Thank you for taking time out of your day to visit.  I had a hard time summarizing The Elusive Elixir (it is a busy book).  I did not want to give away too many details, but I wanted to give enough information to intrigue you.  The other two novels in The Accidental Alchemists Mystery series are The Accidental Alchemist and The Masquerading Magician. You can find Gigi Pandian on Facebook and her website.

The Elusive Elixir by Gigi Pandian is the third book in The Accidental Alchemist Mystery series.  Zoe Faust is in Paris hoping to find answers to help her gargoyle friend, Dorian Robert-Houdin.  Dorian was changed from a stone gargoyle at Notre Dame Cathedral’s Gallery of Gargoyle’s into a live gargoyle.  But over the last few months he has slowly turning back into stone.  Dorian will be alive but trapped in his stone exterior.  Zoe wants to save him and has come to Paris for answers.  Another gargoyle was recently spotted alive in Prague and it was turned over to the Paris University (Zoe has not been able to get access).  Before Zoe can get some answers, Blanche Leblanc approaches her.  Blanche claims to have known Zoe in 1942.  The woman then has her nephew, a police officer, talk with Zoe regarding the fire of Elixir (the herbalist shop Zoe owned in Paris) and the death of Jasper Dubois.  Zoe cannot risk her secrets coming to light and flees Paris.  Back in Portland, Ivan Danko, Zoe’s neighbor and friend, is busy trying to discover the Elixir of Life (he does not wish to die).  Zoe soon realizes that someone has followed Zoe back to Portland.  They want Dorian’s book Non Degenera Alchemia, which talks about backward alchemy.  Life has taken a very dangerous turn for Zoe.  Will she be able to rescue Dorian and keep the book safe?

The Elusive Elixir is well-written, easy to read, and fascinating.  There are a lot of details and it can be hard to keep them all straight.  I have not read the previous books in this series, but it did not hinder my enjoyment of The Elusive Elixir (the author provides the necessary background information on Zoe and Dorian).  I give The Elusive Elixir 4.25 out of 5 stars (I really liked it).  I did find some information to be repeated several times (that Max Liu is Zoe’s “sort of” boyfriend, the basics about backward alchemy, and information about Zoe’s past).  Zoe Faust is a great main character.  She is intelligent, strong, and resourceful.  I appreciated Dorian.  He is humorous and entertaining (and an excellent chef).  I found the mystery fascinating, but I did figure it out (it is wonderfully complex).  I am looking forward to reading the other novels in The Accidental Alchemist series 

I am currently reading Time Out by Suzanne Trauth.  I have to a finish a few items before I can enjoy my evening (i.e.--put on my pj's and relax).  I will review Beyond the Carousel by Bette Lee Crosby tomorrow.  May all of you have a great night  Take care, stay safe and Happy Reading!

The Avid Reader

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