The Cadence of Gypsies + Giveaway
Book Title: The Cadence of Gypsies (Book 1 of The F.I.G. Mysteries) by Barbara Casey
Category: YA fiction, 272 pages
Publisher: Gauthier Publications/Hungry Goat Press
Release date: April 2015 (e-Book)
Content Rating: PG-13 (A few expletives, mild sexual innuendo)
On her 18th birthday, Carolina Lovel learned that she was adopted and was given a letter written by her birth mother in an unknown language. After years of research she travels to Italy on a mission to find the truth about her past. Carolina is accompanied by three extremely gifted but mischievous students the FIGs from Wood Rose Orphanage and Academy for Young Women. In an effort to help their favorite teacher, the FIGs will have to use their special abilities to decipher the Voynich Manuscript, the most mysterious document in the world, and the one thing that is strangely similar to what Carolina was given. Their search will take them into the mystical world of gypsy tradition and magic, more exciting and dangerous than any of them could have imagined.
To read reviews, please visit Barbara Casey's page on iRead Book Tours.
I accidentally started this series with book two. Yet, I didn't realize that I had read book two until I went to pick up this book and read that it was book one. That is how good Ms. Casey's writing was as I was able to jump right into book two with no problems. Although, I will admit that I kind of struggled with this book.
With book one, it felt like the descriptions and layout of all of the characters, FIG, and the Voynich Manuscript were drawn out too long for me. Don't get me wrong as I appreciate the descriptions and the background to the whole series but after a while I was looking for action. The last third of the story did start to pick up on this as a lead into book two. As you know the series does get better with book two.
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About the Author:
Barbara Casey is the author of several award-winning novels for both adults and young adults, as well as book-length works of nonfiction true crime and numerous articles, poems, and short stories. Her nonfiction true crime book, Kathryn Kelly: The Moll Behind Machine Gun Kelly, has been optioned for a major film and television series. In addition to her own writing, she is an editorial consultant and president of the Barbara Casey Agency. Established in 1995, she represents authors throughout the United States, Great Britain, Canada, and Japan. Barbara is also a partner in Strategic Media Books Publishing, an independent publishing house that specializes in cutting-edge adult nonfiction. Barbara lives on a mountain in Georgia with her husband, and three dogs who adopted her: Benton, a hound-mix; Fitz, a miniature dachshund; and Gert, a Jack Russel terrier of sorts.
Connect with the author: Website
THE TASK OF LYUBA
By Barbara Casey
One of the primary themes that runs through each book in The FIG Mystery Series is the gypsy culture.
In Book 1, The Cadence of Gypsies, Lyuba is introduced. She not only is a gypsy, she is special in that she is a choovihni—a wisewoman, an exalted and envied position among gypsy women. As her birthright, she and she alone has been given the responsibility to pass on the knowledge of the travelers to the ones who will follow. She is also the mother of Carolina, the devoted mentor of three orphaned girls knows as Females of Intellectual Genius (FIGs).
It is not until her 18th birthday that Carolina learns that she is adopted. It is then that the people she believed to be her parents present her with a wooden box according to the adoption agreement. The box is from her birth parents, and inside, among other things, is what appears to be a letter written in an unknown language that is similar to the most mysterious document in the world—the Voynich Manuscript. A few years later, after Carolina starts teaching the FIGs at Wood Rose Academy and Orphanage for Young Women, she decides to search for her biological parents. Fortified with information her boyfriend is able to learn, and the FIGs’ eagerness to help her, she and her three brilliant students embark on a journey to Italy. It is there that Carolina meets Lyuba, a gentle soul with the knowledge of the ancients—her mother.
Lyuba returns in Book 2 of The FIG Mystery Series—The Wish Rider. Because she is a choovihni, she knows when Carolina is in trouble, as well as the FIGs, because her daughter loves them. When Dara searches for her mother deep in the depths of Grand Central Terminal in New York City, it is Lyuba who is able to warn Carolina of the horrors and dangers that surround her and the FIGs. It is then that Carolina realizes that she, too, possesses the knowledge of the ancients passed down through generations. Even though she doesn’t fully understand it yet, or how to use it as Lyuba does, she knows enough to be able to hear her mother’s warnings.
In The Clock Flower, Book 3 in The FIG Mystery Series, Lyuba once again is able to tune into the dangers her daughter and “her girls,” the three FIGs, encounter in the small province in China. The connection between Lyuba and Carolina is stronger now with the passage of time, and slowly Carolina is starting to learn about the strange abilities she has inherited from her mother.
The relationship between Carolina and Lyuba represents two different worlds: the ancient world, and the contemporary world. Yet the love felt between this mother and daughter, and the love they share with the three FIGs, diminishes whatever differences that exist between those two worlds.
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Ends April 7, 2018