Book Review: The Seduction Of Victor Hugo

Seduction CoverBook: The Seduction Of Victor Hugo by M.J. Rose

Expected Publication is May 7, 2013 by Atria Books|Pages: 386

Genre: Adult Fiction/Historical Fiction/Paranormal/Fantasy/Mystery

Series: The Reincarnationist #5

Goodreads|M.J. Rose’s Website

A Note: The Seduction Of Victor Hugo was an e-ARC from, which has not influenced my review in any way

Summary: From the author of The Book of Lost Fragrances comes a haunting novel about a grieving woman who discovers the lost letters of novelist Victor Hugo, awakening a mystery that spans centuries.

In 1843, novelist Victor Hugo’s beloved nineteen-year-old daughter drowned. Ten years later, Hugo began participating in hundreds of séances to reestablish contact with her. In the process, he claimed to have communed with the likes of Plato, Galileo, Shakespeare, Dante, Jesus—and even the Devil himself. Hugo’s transcriptions of these conversations have all been published. Or so it was believed.

Recovering from her own losses, mythologist Jac L’Etoile arrives on the Isle of Jersey—where Hugo conducted the séances—hoping to uncover a secret about the island’s Celtic roots. But the man who’s invited her there, a troubled soul named Theo Gaspard, has hopes she’ll help him discover something quite different—Hugo’s lost conversations with someone called the Shadow of the Sepulcher.

What follows is an intricately plotted and atmospheric tale of suspense with a spellbinding ghost story at its heart, by one of America’s most gifted and imaginative novelists.

The Seduction Of Victor Hugo is a creepy but entertaining read.  I really liked how Jac’s story was connected to Hugo’s.  I’m not the biggest fan of stories where a person connects with a long-lost relative.  But this one worked really well, and I liked both stories equally.

There’s something very creepy and gothic about this book.  The ghosts, the past lives, the connection between the Isle Of Jersey and Victor Hugo and Jac…it was all done really well, and everything was equally interesting and compelling.  Which is nice, because I was worried that I would want to skim parts of it…and I didn’t want miss anything, so it was great that I was pulled in from the beginning.  There are a lot of secrets, and everything unfolds naturally.  There were a few things I didn’t see coming, and I liked that everything was paced really well.

I also liked the characters.  Jac was interesting, and her relationships with Malachi and Theo were interesting.  In general, the characters were all great, and they all had their own personalities.  But Hugo was the most interesting, and Rose did a great job with creating a really interesting life with him.  I know absolutely nothing about him, other than him writing Les Miserables and The Hunchback Of Notre Dame, so it was nice going in with no expectations of his life.

Another great thing about this book is that you don’t need to read the other books in the series in order to understand this one.  I didn’t even know this was part of a series until I finished it, but it was nice that I could jump right in and know what was going on.  There were a couple times where I wanted a little more explanation, but overall, things made sense- and I do want to go back and read the other books because I liked this one so much!

Final Thoughts:

I really liked Seduction and the connection between past and present.  The Isle Of Jersey was a great setting, and added to the creepy atmosphere.  Seduction gets 4 stars.


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