Official Review: The Dagger With Two Blades

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joshfee77
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Official Review: The Dagger With Two Blades

Post by joshfee77 » 17 Jan 2019, 01:34

[Following is an official OnlineBookClub.org review of "The Dagger With Two Blades" by N. Scoto Bowen.]
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3 out of 4 stars
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The Dagger With Two Blades is a crime thriller by N. Scoto Bowen. Daniel Hooper, an American artist who paints in watercolours, visits Venice to show his art in a gallery run by Amedeo Paradiso. Arriving at the train station, he falls immediately for Mara Van Hoeven, a beautiful woman who appears equally smitten with him. Soon, she invites him to stay at the house of her uncle, Novak Nemkovich (or Nemno, as he calls himself). Mara has an identical twin sister, Nadja, who - she claims - likes to steal men from her for sport. Dan also meets the charismatic Artemi, a business associate of Nemno. Artemi enlists Dan's help in the clandestine surveillance of a nearby house under the guise of painting a picture of it. Dan quickly realises there is more to the situation than he could have imagined. Then somebody murders Artemi...

Bowen's writing is engaging right from the start. The story moves forward with plenty of momentum to hold the reader's interest. It is easily one of the more engrossing books I have read for Online Book Club, and I finished it in just two days. With a highly addictive plot, there are plenty of twists for lovers of mystery.

The prose is simple to read and the sentence construction is neat. Bowen uses commas perfectly, including the "Oxford comma" when listing multiple items. The descriptive passages are simple, without too many adjectives, giving an ease of reading which combines beautifully with the sense of intrigue in the plot. Dan Hooper tells the story in the first person, so we only learn details as he does, which adds to the mystery.

As for characters, the instant attraction and fast-developing relationship between Dan and Mara adds interest right from the start. Given the genre, I found myself suspicious of Mara's motives, simply because she and Dan seem to fall for each other so quickly. The characters are all developed nicely; one example is that Dan finds it increasingly difficult to produce quality paintings as the tension rises and the web of illegal intrigue grows more elaborate.

The only problem with this book is its typographical errors. I must note that these are very minor, such as the odd missing space, hyphen, or quotation mark. Further, there were only around fifteen errors in the entire book. With these fixed, this is a definite 4-star book, a highly entertaining mystery with a great plot, strong characters and an addictive story. Unfortunately, in its current state, I must rate The Dagger With Two Blades 3 out of 4 stars. It would suit any reader of crime fiction, especially those who love a good mystery. It does contain sex and violence, but neither is gratuitous.

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The Dagger With Two Blades
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Anthony__
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Post by Anthony__ » 18 Jan 2019, 04:25

What an intriguing love story and I love it. From your review, I can see the book will be full of suspense! Great review

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Post by Jessacardinal » 18 Jan 2019, 13:38

A thrilling page-turner! This one makes my list of future reads. Thanks for a great review!
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Post by kdstrack » 18 Jan 2019, 16:24

Another quick read! I love hard-to-put-down books. The perfect punctuation would also be nice. Thanks for a great review.

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Post by kandscreeley » 21 Jan 2019, 13:21

I could care less whether the author uses the Oxford comma or not. The story does sound interesting, though. However, I'm always a bit skeptical of those that fall in love immediately. Also, the sex and violence would probably keep me away from this. Thanks.
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Post by Faithmwangi » 23 Jan 2019, 06:57

This is such an insightful review. You caught my attention at crime thriller. The sex and violence are, however, difficult to overlook.
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Post by Willy 1 » 24 Jan 2019, 06:20

Apart from the errors it seems like a beautifully written crime thriller. Falling in love quickly can be a real issue because you won't get to know the person well enough. Good review.

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Post by joshfee77 » 27 Jan 2019, 16:07

Anthony__ wrote:
18 Jan 2019, 04:25
What an intriguing love story and I love it. From your review, I can see the book will be full of suspense! Great review
Yeah, a really well-written page-turner, this one. Thanks!

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joshfee77
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Post by joshfee77 » 27 Jan 2019, 16:09

Jessacardinal wrote:
18 Jan 2019, 13:38
A thrilling page-turner! This one makes my list of future reads. Thanks for a great review!
Thanks! I really found this one more readable than a lot of other books I've reviewed.

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joshfee77
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Post by joshfee77 » 27 Jan 2019, 16:10

kdstrack wrote:
18 Jan 2019, 16:24
Another quick read! I love hard-to-put-down books. The perfect punctuation would also be nice. Thanks for a great review.
This book was certainly easy to read quickly, plenty of action and intrigue. Thanks!

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Post by joshfee77 » 27 Jan 2019, 16:16

kandscreeley wrote:
21 Jan 2019, 13:21
I could care less whether the author uses the Oxford comma or not. The story does sound interesting, though. However, I'm always a bit skeptical of those that fall in love immediately. Also, the sex and violence would probably keep me away from this. Thanks.
You're blunt but you have a point! :lol2: Not sure what I was thinking re my Oxford comma comment (certainly superfluous to any casual reader) - I think it's just because I've read a lot of amateurish writing lately where authors can't use commas properly, or confuse a comma and a semicolon. There's no excuse for poor punctuation for those aspiring to be professional writers. Thanks.

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joshfee77
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Post by joshfee77 » 27 Jan 2019, 16:18

Faithmwangi wrote:
23 Jan 2019, 06:57
This is such an insightful review. You caught my attention at crime thriller. The sex and violence are, however, difficult to overlook.
Unfortunately a lot of modern crime thrillers include some level of sex and violence. At least they weren't too graphic in this one. A great read. Thanks.

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joshfee77
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Post by joshfee77 » 27 Jan 2019, 16:21

Willy 1 wrote:
24 Jan 2019, 06:20
Apart from the errors it seems like a beautifully written crime thriller. Falling in love quickly can be a real issue because you won't get to know the person well enough. Good review.
Knowing it was a crime thriller, I was definitely suspicious of Mara's motivations from the start. But were my suspicions justified? You'll have to read the book to find out. Thanks!

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