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Betty Harmon – :
Candice Cushing and the Lost Tomb of Cleopatra by Georgette Kaplan is the second book in The Cushing–Nevada Chronicles series. This novel begins where the first one ends and continues the adventures of Easy Nevada and Candice Cushing.
Easy Nevada is a character similar to Indiana Jones or Lara Croft, only in lesbian form. She is on a mission to find the twelfth crystal skull for her employer, after already finding the last eleven. For this last one, she needs the help of Candice Cushing, a by-the-book, British educated archaeologist. Candice does not agree with Easy’s grave robbing. However, after being connected with Easy in her last project and facing the wrath of a religious zealot whose son Easy killed, she finds herself a partner in the quest for Cleopatra’s tomb and the last crystal skull. Thus the adventure continues with lots of bad guys, bullets, rockets and bombs, with hardly time for the two to breathe in between.
I love the character of Easy Nevada. She is sarcastic, funny, rude and caustic; everything you expect from a character like this. Add in the straight-laced, British taught, all business, law abiding archaeologist, and you automatically have some wildly funny and exciting times. The adventures in this tale are really non-stop. It is best to set aside any expectations of realism before you begin to read. This is not a realistic story, but it is very enjoyable if you just sit back and let the tale unfold.
Don’t expect a lot of romance, though there is a definite attraction between Easy and Candice. The attraction began in the first novel and continues here, but it is not the major plot line of this tale, at least not yet. This is an action and adventure story for the most part. I will mention that this is not the end of the series. There will be at least one more novel added to the chronicles.
This is NOT a standalone book. If you have not read Easy Nevada and the Pyramid’s Curse, you will not understand, and probably not enjoy this story. There is simply too much information in the first novel that you need in this one. I read the first book a little over a year ago, and even I had a bit of a hard time remembering some of the secondary characters that turn up in this one. I can’t imagine trying to understand everything without some knowledge from book one.
If you love adventure stories like Indiana Jones or the Tomb Raider, then I think you will enjoy these books. I enjoyed both novels and will be looking for the third one as soon as it is published.
I received an ARC from Ylva Publishing for an honest review.
judith.silberfeld – :
Reading a book by Georgette Kaplan is always fun and at times mind-boggling, and it’s true once again. Candice Cushing and the Lost Tomb of Cleopatra is the sequel to Easy Nevada and the Pyramid’s Curse and picks up right where the latter ended. Do not read it as a standalone, you’ll miss out on most of the fun. Also, why would you deny yourself the pleasure of more Cushing and Nevada?
I won’t even try to summarize what the story is about, other than saying that, still looking for Cleopatra’s secret tomb, Nevada, the tomb raider, and Candice, the earnest archeologist, keep escaping death, fighting and flirting, sometimes all at the same time. There’s a lot happening, it’s hot and dusty as the Sahara and thrilling as can be.
I love and hate Easy Nevada in equal measure. She’s like the blasé (but surprisingly kind at times) spawn of Indiana Jones and Lara Croft and she also reminds me of the male heroes in old black and white comedies. She’s obnoxious and arrogant and selfish and greedy yet so sexy. She’s the epitome of the sexy scoundrel. Candice on the other hand is both very British and hoping to reconnect with her roots in Sudan. She’s respectful and reliable. They couldn’t be more different, so much so that Candice isn’t even sure she likes Nevada, but she has a tough time resisting her. Nevada is much more complex than she wants the rest of the world to believe, but she doesn’t really fool Candice.
Like Easy Nevada and the Pyramid’s Curse, Candice Cushing and the Lost Tomb of Cleopatra is exhilarating and deeper than the story, the cover (which I love), the title would have you believe. In this crazy adventure, Candice learns to appreciate the simple fact of being alive. Not dead, as she herself puts it. She gets closer to Nevada, better understanding her motivations and the way she thinks and acts.
If you’re hoping for romance, you might be disappointed, although there’s a lot of flirting, and it gets hot for other reasons than the desert every now and then. A third book is announced for 2020 and, fingers crossed, Easy and Candice will finally get there. Or maybe not. I love the interaction between them so much, I don’t really care where it goes.
Carolyn McBride – :
This, like the first Easy Nevada book, was a rollicking burst of fun mixed with a side dish of danger. So much better than Indiana Jones, the pace just never lets up! I loved the many pop culture references, Easy’s sarcastic sense of humour, and the way she and Candice mesh together better with every hurdle thrown at them.
I remember reading about crystal skulls back in the eighties, wondering if they were real, and what they might really be. (Religious tokens, or ‘real’ skulls that belong to beings we’ll never understand?)
I kept that sense of wonder throughout, and I’m still no closer to a decision on that than I was before.
As before, I felt their surroundings, I’m sure I tasted the dry sand as they walked through that sandstorm. I admit I was a little pissed off when the bottle of Corona got smashed! You just don’t waste beer, Dude!
Can’t wait for the next one!