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Mark of the Lion
Jade del Cameron series #1

by Suzanne Arruda

      Jade del Cameron is no typical young miss of the early 20th century. Raised on a New Mexico ranch, she drove ambulances on the front lines during World War I. It was there where she heard the dying wishes of her fiancÚ, to find his long-lost brother. But his mother does not even know he had a brother, so all she has are a few obscure clues to go on that point to Nairobi...

This is the sort of thing I tend to think of when I imagine what I would most like to read at any given time. If you, like this reviewer, love adventure stories by writers like Rider Haggard and Edgar Rice Burroughs, think of this and throw in a whodunit for good measure, and make the protagonist female. That is this book in a nutshell, which along with a cracking plot and not a wasted page, manages to convey the decadence of Happy Valley and the thrill of a safari (the type that has guns rather than just cameras). Jade is an engagingly intrepid heroine, and the plot kept me guessing until the very end. There are witch doctors in here, skinwalkers, Maasai tribesmen, heat, dust and plenty of really wild animals, presented in a way to appeal to the modern reader without compromising historical accuracy. Hugely enjoyable? This type of book is what those two words mean!

The Book

New American Library
December 2006
Historical Crime [1919, Kenya]
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The Reviewer

Rachel A Hyde
Reviewed 2007
© 2006