Apr 24, 2014

Whip Smart: Lola Montez and the Poisoned Nom de Plume

Visit Book Beginnings by Rose City Reader for this weekly Friday meme.

Title: Whip Smart: Lola Montez and the Poisoned Nom de Plume by Kit Brennan
Published October 1, 2013; Astor + Blue Editions
Genre: historical fiction

The main character in the series is based on the real life Victorian character, Lola Montez.

Book beginning:
The Return - 1844
Teeth chattering, arms clasping my body for warmth, I gazed out the window at snow and more snow. I seemed to have spent my whole life sitting motionless in freezing cold post-coaches, rumbling along! At least we were now headed south. Fool that I am.
What a ludicrous idea it had been, trying to get to St. Petersburg in the depths of winter. I'd convinced myself that Imperial Russia would become my spirited style and flamboyant nature, that perhaps I could talk my way into a dancing engagement at the largest, most prestigious theatre in the city - a venue that would attract royalty, exalted military types, and the creme de la creme of Russia's dancer and artists...
Goodreads book description:
Kit Brennan’s second in the Whip Smart series opens with the ever-headstrong Lola Montez careening around Europe, on the run from the haunting memories of Spain and the wild adventure that nearly cost her life.

It is 1844. Lola encounters celebrated pianist and composer Franz Liszt, who encourages her to set her sights on Paris to establish her dancing career. The night that Lola performs her racy Spider Dance at the Paris Opéra, she meets quite possibly the man of her dreams: Henri Dujarier, co-owner of La Presse newspaper.

Lola seems on the verge of breaking Victorian tradition and actually having it all, but forces are at work to keep Lola and Henri apart. Deadly threats and rumors turn into reality, as shadowy figures stop at nothing to sabotage Lola’s new endeavor (unheard of for a woman): to pen an adventure novel, using a nom de plume, about a feisty female character.

Visit the author's website for more about her books.


  1. Enticing intro! I had not heard of Lola Montez before.

  2. This sounds different, fun and interesting. Apparently it is based upon a real character. Such unusual people often make for such great stories.

  3. I love novels set in Imperial Russia because it's just such an amazing backdrop. But travelling in a Russian winter is a pretty bad idea! Thanks for sharing :) I hope you have a great weekend!
    My Friday post
    Juli @ Universe in Words

  4. Great intro. Imperial Russia is a great setting for a novel, all that history and art and architecture <3 I wonder what the character will do next...Thanks for sharing this, happy reading :)

    My Friday Book Memes

  5. I don't read a lot of historical novels, but the ones set in Russia are my favorites. I even dubbed one summer years ago as my Russian Novel Period.

    This one sounds awesome...and thanks for sharing. Here's mine: “AND THEN I FOUND YOU”

  6. With settings in Imperial Russia and Paris, a famous dancer and composer, and "deadly threats and rumors," this book sounds like a terrific story! I'll add it to my TBR list.
    Here's the link to my Friday post: RESCUE MY HEART.

  7. I am tired of snow. :) I am cold just reading those lines. :)

    THANKS for sharing.

    Silver's Reviews
    My Book Beginnings

  8. I've rarely read historical fiction, but one of my favorite books (Zoya by Danielle Steele) is set in Russia and Paris, so this does interest me.

  9. This is a very entertaining series - audacious characters and high quality prose. My review: http://www.bookloverbookreviews.com/2014/04/book-review-whip-smart-lola-montez-poisoned-nom-de-plume-kit-brennan.html


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