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The Beautiful (Hardcover)
Instant New York Times and Indie Bestseller!
New York Times bestselling author Renée Ahdieh returns with a sumptuous, sultry and romantic new series set in 19th century New Orleans where vampires hide in plain sight.
In 1872, New Orleans is a city ruled by the dead. But to seventeen-year-old Celine Rousseau, New Orleans is a safe haven after she's forced to flee her life as a dressmaker in Paris. Taken in by the sisters of the Ursuline convent in the middle of the carnival season, Celine is quickly enraptured by the vibrant city, from its music to its fancy soirées and even its danger. She becomes embroiled in the city's glitzy underworld, known as La Cour des Lions, after catching the eye of the group's enigmatic leader, Sébastien Saint Germain.
When the body of one of the girls from the convent is found in Sébastien's own lair--the second dead girl to turn up in recent weeks--Celine battles her attraction to Sébastien and suspicions about his guilt along with the shame of her own horrible secret.
After a third murder, New Orleans becomes gripped by the terror of a serial killer on the loose--one who has now set Celine in his sights. As the murderer stalks her, Celine finally takes matters into her own hands, only to find herself caught in the midst of an age-old feud between the darkest creatures of the night, where the price of forbidden love is her life.
At once a sultry romance and a decadent, thrilling mystery, master storyteller Renée Ahdieh embarks on her most potent fantasy series yet.
About the Author
Renée Ahdieh is a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. In her spare time, she likes to dance salsa and collect shoes. She is passionate about all kinds of curry, rescue dogs, and college basketball. The first few years of her life were spent in a high-rise in South Korea; consequently, Renée enjoys having her head in the clouds. She lives in Charlotte, North Carolina, with her husband and their tiny overlord of a dog. She is the author of Flame in the Mist and Smoke in the Sun as well as the #1 New York Times bestselling The Wrath and the Dawn and its sequel, The Rose and the Dagger.
Praise for The Beautiful:
“The Beautiful, which kicks off a new series, returns the vampire novel to popular form, evoking the style of Anne Rice and breathing fresh life into the genre.” —Entertainment Weekly
“It's true: Vampires are back, and they're more seductive than ever.” —Bustle
“Ahdieh brings New Orleans vibrantly to life, particularly when exploring the complicated racial and gender restrictions of high society through main and supporting characters of mixed-race origin. Sure to please fans of the author and of the vampire-romance genre.” —Kirkus
“The first in a series, this mystery novel shines when it focuses on Celine and her struggle to fit into society while trying to be true to herself.” —School Library Journal
“An action-packed third act and a final reveal will have readers grasping for the sequel. . . Vampires never stay dead for long, and best-selling Ahdieh's approach—part homage to the classics, part fresh-eyed revitalization—will intrigue all but the most committed skeptics.” —Booklist
“Darkly glamorous . . . Compelling.” —The Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books
“Ahdieh’s New Orleans is lushly atmospheric, permeating this series opener with an undercurrent of violence within a seductive underworld around Mardi Gras. . . Readers will champion Celine’s wit and incredible grit—even surrounded by powerful, supernatural protectors, Celine fights for herself and those she loves. . . Fans will clamor for the continuation to this captivating volume.” —Publishers Weekly
“An incredibly ornate, lush New Orleans; characters who imprint themselves on your memory forever; a story that is nail-biting and swoony and satisfying and tense ALL AT THE SAME TIME. And of course . . . VAMPIRES.” —Sabaa Tahir, New York Times bestselling author of An Ember in the Ashes