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Authors: Suzanne Arruda

Tags: #Mystery, #Historical

Mark of the Lion

BOOK: Mark of the Lion
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Table of Contents
Praise for
Mark of the Lion
“From the extraordinary opening sentence in the shell-torn trenches of France in the Great War to the green hills of British colonial East Africa,
Mark of the Lion
sweeps the reader along with an irresistible narrative and literary drive. If you’re looking for a fresh new mystery series, a vivid historical setting, and an especially appealing heroine, look no further. One of the most memorable mystery adventure stories I’ve read in a long time.”
—Douglas Preston,
New York Times
Bestselling Author of
Tyrannosaur Canyon
and coauthor of
Dance of Death
“Set in 1919, Arruda’s promising debut introduces a heroine who’s no ordinary Gibson girl… . Most readers will close this charming book eagerly anticipating the next installment of Jade’s adventures.”

Publishers Weekly
“Jade del Cameron is smart, capable, and insightful … and although
Mark of the Lion
would be a good read just for Arruda’s encyclopedic knowledge of Africa, it is Jade herself … readers will remember best. Arruda has given us a literary hero in the tradition of Sir Richard Burton and H. Rider Haggard, but without the burden of nineteenth-century sensibilities.”
—Max McCoy, Author of the Indiana Jones Series
The Moon Pool
“There’s something for everyone in this new series debut—mystery, history, adventure, travel, even a bit of romance.”

Library Journal
(starred review)

Mark of the Lion
is historical mystery at its best with a dynamic amateur sleuth and a well-drawn supporting cast of quirky characters. First-time author Suzanne Arruda hits the reader with a gripping opening and builds tension, twists, and turns from there … a compelling premiere performance… . I hope Arruda’s working on her second book!”
—Karen Harper,
New York Times
Bestselling Author of
Dark Angel
and the Queen Elizabeth I Mystery Series

Mark of the Lion
carries a feel of authenticity that makes me long to return to Africa … [and] should position Jade del Cameron as a heroine for many future adventures.”
—Peggy Anne Vallery, Past President of the Arizona Chapter
of Safari Club International
“Readers will compare this gem of a historical investigative tale to Alexander McCall Smith’s Precious Ladies Detective Agency thrillers. The story line is cleverly written so that fans will obtain a taste of life at the end of WWI in England and Africa as Jade goes from one escapade to another… . This is the start of what looks like to be a long friendship between historical mystery fans and Jade del Cameron.”
—The Best Reviews
“Arruda manufactures an intriguing backdrop for the debut of her new series, delivering both a heady sense of East Africa’s cultural and geographical landscape during the early 1900s and an outspoken heroine who proves herself gratifyingly ahead of her times in numerous ways.”

“Arruda’s debut is an enjoyable romp through a colorful place and period in which the heroine has a Douglas-Fairbanks-in-a-split-skirt charm.”

Kirkus Reviews
“An exciting, well-paced debut… . Arruda’s [Africa] feels more like a travel writer’s—awesome beauty that is unknowable and untouchable. But it’s a place worth visiting. And Jade is a character worth getting to know.”

The Philadelphia Inquirer
New American Library
Published by New American Library, a division of
Penguin Group (USA) Inc., 375 Hudson Street,
New York, New York 10014, USA
Penguin Group (Canada), 90 Eglinton Avenue East, Suite 700, Toronto,
Ontario M4P 2Y3, Canada (a division of Pearson Penguin Canada Inc.)
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Ireland (a division of Penguin Books Ltd.)
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Rosebank, Johannesburg 2196, South Africa
Penguin Books Ltd., Registered Offices:
80 Strand, London WC2R 0RL, England
First New American Library Trade Paperback Printing, December 2006
Copyright © Suzanne Arruda, 2006
eISBN : 978-1-101-53227-0
Without limiting the rights under copyright reserved above, no part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in or introduced into a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form, or by any means (electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise), without the prior written permission of both the copyright owner and the above publisher of this book.
This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents either are the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously, and any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, business establishments, events, or locales is entirely coincidental.
The publisher does not have any control over and does not assume any responsibility for author or third-party Web sites or their content.
The scanning, uploading, and distribution of this book via the Internet or via any other means without the permission of the publisher is illegal and punishable by law. Please purchase only authorized electronic editions, and do not participate in or encourage electronic piracy of copyrighted materials. Your support of the author’s rights is appreciated.

This work is dedicated to Mom (Woofy), who always loved
everything I wrote, and to my dad (the Dad)
for everything he’s done for us and still does for Mom.
MY THANKS TO THE MEMBERS OF the Joplin Writers Guild for support and critiquing; Max McCoy for all his assistance and encouragement; the Pittsburg State University Axe Library Interlibrary Loan staff for all the books; Neil Bryan, John Fields, and Ellen Benitz for the lessons in firearms, and the National Wild Turkey Federation’s Women in the Outdoors program for the opportunity to handle a rifle, a shotgun, and a bow; Helen and Dr. John Daley for valuable critiquing and information on historical weapons; my agent, Susan Gleason, and my editor, Ellen Edwards, for taking a chance on a new author and their advice and encouragement; and my sons, James and Michael, for their love and support. I especially wish to thank my wonderful husband, Joe, for setting up my Web site but mostly for all his love, support, and encouragement.
May 1918
“Despite Britain’s attempts, East Africa
is still a dangerous land. Perhaps that is part
of its charm for so many of its visitors.”
—The Traveler
poste de secours
to the evacuation hospital began as dawn broke. She yawned, tired after a long night of driving. As her friend Beverly used to say with her typical British understatement, “War’s deucedly inconvenient in the dark.” Of course, that was the only time it was relatively safe to drive so close to the front and evacuate the wounded. Safe enough, that is, if the moon wasn’t up, and one drove with the lights out and managed to avoid the treacherous shell holes, unexploded grenades, and piles of rotting horses, or “smells,” as they were called. The horizon before her glowed with a beautiful rosy pink gilded with tangerine. A delicate golden yellow brushed the edges of the wispy clouds that flicked their tails in the sky like wild mustangs.
thought Jade. Just like sunrise at her parents’ ranch in Cimarron, New Mexico, only she was hell and away from Cimarron. She was attached to the French army and went where the army went. At present, that meant Compiègne, the front lines, and evacuation duty. The latter required the driver to go alone on cratered roads to God only knew where, at all hours, in all conditions, and in a car that was generally not in any shape to handle the trip. Both Jade and Beverly considered themselves incredibly lucky.
Jade studied the rough track ahead and replayed the night’s events in her mind as she drove. It began, as did most runs, when their supervisor, Second Lieutenant Loupie Lowther, met the women as they lined up by their trucks.
“Same area as yesterday, ladies,” Lieutenant Lowther announced. “
Poste de triage.
Remember to turn left at the first ‘smell.’ ”
BOOK: Mark of the Lion
11.38Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub

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