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BLOG TOUR: The Devlin Diary by Christi Phillips (Book Review 2010-83)

Product Description

From the acclaimed author of The Rossetti Letter comes a dazzling novel of intrigue, passion, and royal secrets that shifts tantalizingly between Restoration-era London and present-day Cambridge.
London, 1672. The past twelve years have brought momentous changes: the restoration of the monarchy, a devastating plague and fire. Yet the city remains a teeming, thriving metropolis, energized by the lusty decadence of Charles II's court and burgeoning scientific inquiry. Although women enjoy greater freedom, they are not allowed to practice medicine, a restriction that physician Hannah Devlin evades by treating patients that most other doctors shun: the city's poor.
But Hannah has a special knowledge that Secretary of State Lord Arlington desperately needs. At the king's Machiavellian court, Hannah attracts the attention of two men, charming courtier Ralph Montagu and anatomist Dr. Edward Strathern, as well as the attention of the powerful College of Physicians, which views her work as criminal. When two influential courtiers are found brutally murdered, their bodies inscribed with arcane symbols, Hannah is drawn into a dangerous investigation by Dr. Strathern, who believes the murders conceal a far-reaching conspiracy that may include Hannah's late father and the king himself.
Cambridge, 2008. Teaching history at Trinity College is Claire Donovan's dream come true -- until one of her colleagues is found dead on the banks of the River Cam. The only key to the professor's unsolved murder is a seventeenthcentury diary kept by his last research subject, Hannah Devlin, physician to the king's mistress. With help from the eclectic collections of Cambridge's renowned libraries, Claire and historian Andrew Kent follow the clues Devlin left behind, uncovering secrets of London's dark past and Cambridge's equally murky present, and discovering that events of three hundred years ago may still have consequences today....
A suspenseful and richly satisfying tale brimming with sharply observed historical detail, The Devlin Diary brings past and present to vivid life. With wit and grace, Christi Phillips holds readers spellbound with an extraordinary novel of secrets, obsession, and the haunting power of the past.

About the Author

Christi Phillips is the author of The Rossetti Letter, which has been translated into six foreign languages. Her research combines a few of her favorite things: old books, libraries, and travel. When she's not rummaging around in an archive or exploring the historic heart of a European city, she lives with her husband in the San Francisco Bay Area, where she is at work on her next novel, set in France. Visit

Product Details

  • Hardcover: 448 pages
  • Publisher: Pocket (May 12, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1416527397
  • ISBN-13: 978-1416527398


Historical Fiction is one of my favorites and especially when it is well done.  This story leaves you wanting the next book from Christie Phillips as soon as possible.  The story deftly switches back and forth between modern times and the 17th century with quite a bit of suspense.  This will have you turning the pages and staying up well past your bedtime.  There is rich historical detail and wonderful dialogue.  Hannah and Claire both provide strong female characters.  There is a surprise ending, but I am not going to spill it!  If you love Philippa Gregory and Heather Terrell, you will love this one.


The Devlin Diary: Thursday, May 27th
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  1. This has been on my wish list since the first day I heard about it. Glad to see you enjoyed it so much!

  2. I keep seeing all of these great reviews for this book. It makes me wish I'd joined this one. I'm kicking myself now!

  3. I have heard good things about this book. I also love historical fiction.

  4. This looks like a great story. I like historical fiction too, especially when the women have these untraditional roles. Can't wait to read it.

  5. I haven't delved into the world of historical fiction yet, but someday I will get there. Thanks for sharing Mary!