Review: The Cipher by Diana Pharaoh Francis

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The Cipher by Diana Pharaoh Francis has been re-released!

If you’ve read the previous version, this one has been revised from that edition.  My review is for the new edition.


From Diana Pharaoh Francis’ website:

Lucy Trenton’s ability to sense majick is one of her most dangerous secrets. But only one.

A blackmailer knows the other.

Suddenly, Lucy is caught in a treasonous plot to destroy the crown, and she’s trapped in the tentacles of a desperate, destructive majick. Her only hope is ship captain Marten Thorpe, who–by every account–cannot be trusted. With time running out, Lucy must find a way to win a dangerous game or lose everything she holds dear.


The Enchanted Alley’s Review

Let’s start with the cover.  The new cover echoes the same elements as the previous cover (viewable here) but the new cover is much more enticing!  They say to never judge a book by its cover, but the cover is the first thing that drew me to this book.  I probably would have passed the book over if it still had the original cover.   The original cover was not a bad cover, but this one is just so much better.  The contrast of the red cloak with the dark, mysterious shipwreck in the back combined with the movement of the wind make this cover really come to life.

Now, onto the book itself.  I found myself thinking about this novel when I was going about my day-to-day activities.  I kept pulling out my iPhone and opening my Kindle app just to read a few more pages.  The description was detailed, the pacing was steady, and the author gave just enough away that I wanted to keep reading to find out more but wasn’t frustrated at not knowing what was going on.

Reviews of the earlier editions mentioned that the characters were flat, but I did not find that problem with the new edition.  The characters were believable and engaging, especially Lucy.  She has her flaws, just like everyone, and that makes her more realistic and gives her motivation for her actions.  She also has her secrets.

There was only one small problem that I found with this book: the word majicar.  Even though it refers to a person who uses majick, every time I read it, I first thought it was a magical transport vehicle of some sort.  And that initial image stuck with me throughout the whole novel.  But that could just be the country gal in me.

In all, I definitely recommend The Cipher.  

It is a spectacular ride through a dark and dangerous world filled with surprises.


Essential Info:

Title:  The Cipher

Author: Diana Pharaoh Francis

Publisher: Bell Bridge Books

Length: 399 pages

Price: $5.79 Kindle, $14.58 Paperback

Release Date: June 6, 2014

Amazon Link: Buy it HERE


Disclaimer:  I received this book for free in an exchange for an honest review from the publisher via NetGalley. 

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