Venom by Fiona Paul (Book Review #123)

I rate this book 3.5 out of 5 stars.

(Finished Reading: 20/07/17

My 16th book this year)

Cassandra, one of the lucky elite young women, already engaged to marry a wealthy young gentleman, Lucas. Showered with luxuries, jewellery, maids and much more, everything except the freedom to follow her heart.

The streets and waters of Venice are full of beauty and mystery. Night brings secrecy, a world of courtesans, young women are found missing, some are waiting to be found.

Cassandra finds herself drawn into Falco’s world. A common artist full of secrets of his own. Appearing in the most unexpected places and capturing Cassandra’s heart. She finds herself torn between following her heart, or following the rules set out for their society, and being true to her fiancé, Lucas.


This is the 1st book of the “Secrets of the Eternal Rose” series. Cassandra has always bent the rules and has been “different” to the other young women of Venice. She is a strong and curious character, full of fire and fight in her, she is determined to do the right thing when she discovers a dead body. But then Falco appears and turns her world upside down, showing her excitement and giving her the feel for freedom, all at the pretense of helping to discover who the murderer is.

I love the relationship between Falco and Cassandra, the pull of attraction but the uncertainties of how they feel for one another and what is expected of them from society.

Luca, Cassandra’s fiancé is a whole different story. Bland and boring but then he makes an appearance in the book and turns out to be completely different to what we as the reader have been led to believe.

I love the descriptions of the landscape, the luxuries of their world and the mysterious nature of the book.

Something didn’t feel right when Lucas suddenly appears and the book just takes a tumble, it felt like a whole different story and a forced end to this wonderful 1st book of the series. I am very much intending to read book 2 yet I’m not bursting with excitement to recommend this book to other readers.

Written by Ling Lee (20/07/17).

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