Scorpio Rising: The Scorpio Series by Monique Domovich

 

 

Today I am pleased to present a review for Scorpio Rising by Monique Domovich, the first of 2 books in The Scorpio Series.  In addition, you should look at the other Tour Stops, and see what other’s think. And be sure to enter the Rafflecopter for a chance to win your own eBook copy.

 

Title:  Scorpio Rising
Author: Monique Domovich
Publisher:  Larsen Publishing
Format:  Paperback and eBook
Pages: 378
ISBN:  1463790732
Series:  The Scorpio Series #1
Read in Order: Yes
Stars:  4.5
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About the Book:  Set in New York and Paris amid the glamorous and competitive worlds of art and real estate, Scorpio Rising takes the reader from the late 1940s to the 1960s through the tumultuous lives of its heroes.

There is Alex Ivanov, the son of a Russian immigrant and part-time prostitute. He yearns to escape his sordid life and achieve fame and fortune. His dreams of becoming a world-class builder are met with countless obstacles, yet he perseveres in the hope of someday receiving the recognition he craves.

Half a world away, Brigitte Dartois is an abused teenager who runs into the arms of a benefactor with an agenda all his own. When she finds out that her boss has an ulterior motive, she flees again, determined to earn her living through her art. This career brings her fame, but also the unwanted attention of her early abuser.

Monique Domovitch’s debut novel, Scorpio Rising, is a compelling tale filled with finely etched characters and a superb understanding of the power of ambition. Scorpio Rising promises to resonate with all who once had a dream.

My Review:  The majority of the book is two concurrent but very different story lines, also done in two very different voices. The book starts with Alex Ivanov at age 12: son of a Russian immigrant mother, absent father and living in Brooklyn. Quickly we are taken to meet Brigitte Dartois, a young girl in France with a new and abusive stepfather and a cold and removed mother.

From two different perspectives, we see the effects of that early abuse or indifferent behaviour and how it shapes the relationships and attitudes of these two young people, as they grow into adulthood and need to find their way in the world. Alex wants nothing more than to create and design buildings that will sit as monument to his talent. Brigitte is an artist with a bold, emotive style that utilizes everyday objects to create emotion in those who see her paintings.

The story was beautifully written, with a solid and distinct voice for each character that reinforces the characters we are coming to know. While through a series of coincidences, the characters meet, although it was a rather predictable outcome, it came on faster and with less introspection on all sides, when the history of the characters is considered. The ending felt a bit rushed, and while it is leading nicely into the sequel, that transition felt as if it was more of a “I should” decision by the author rather than asking “Should I ?”. I almost feel as if the book could have ended without the second to last section as a lead in to the next volume. And that, is why this was a 4.5 star book for me, rather than a full on 5.

*I had purchased this book prior to the review opportunity. I was not compensated for this review, and all conclusions are my own responsibility. 

To read more about the author, and where to contact her, as well as read my review of the 2nd book in the series, The Sting of the Scorpio – please read more.

About the Author:   Monique Domovitch is the author of Scorpio Rising and The Sting of the Scorpio. She also writes under the pen name Carol Ann Martin for Obsidian, an imprint of Penguin. She is represented by Natalie Fischer of the Bradford Literary Agency, and lives with her husband and her three dogs in La Jolla California.

Monique Domovitch was born the first in a family of ten children in a small town in Northern Ontario, and maintains to this day that she was not harmed by the experience. She attended The Sacred Heart Convent, an Ottawa boarding school where she learned to keep her hands folded neatly in her lap and to smile vaguely when people use profane language around her. Her first job was in Montreal as a fashion model, and she is credited with inventing the famous pouty pose that is now used by top models everywhere. She has turned thirty nine again this year and pledges to do it over and over. Just like everybody else in the world, she is working on a new novel, this one will be her fourth.

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Title:  The Sting of the Scorpio
Author: Monique Domovich
Stars:  5

My Review:  Picking up where Scorpio Rising left off, this book continues with all of the emotional punch and well-defined characters of the first, while creating a story that is fun to read, and keeps you entertained. Brigitte and Alex have moved to New York, and are starting their lives together. Alex has not lost his desire to ‘be someone important’, and his single-minded determination and immature need for ego-stroking at every moment create a character that is far less sympathetic. As the business and his notoriety grow, Brigitte retreats to become the “woman behind the man”, or does she?

Rife with infidelities, intrigue and a peek at the world of high end real estate development, this was another ‘can’t put it down’ book, with a mysterious twist at the end that is not at all expected.

A story line that is tightly crafted with great detail and fast pacing, this second book in the series both meets and exceeds the expectations of the first, and provides a satisfying conclusion to the saga of Alex and Brigitte.

*I received a copy of this book from the author for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review, and all conclusions are my own responsibility.