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Summary

Alice Verney is a young woman intent on achieving her dreams. Having left Restoration England in the midst of a messy scandal, she has been living in Louis XIV's baroque, mannered France for two years. Now she is returning home to England and anxious to re-establish herself quickly. First, she will regain her former position as a maid of honor to Charles II's queen. Then she will marry the most celebrated duke of the Restoration, putting herself in a position to attain power she's only dreamed of. As a duchess, Alice will be able to make or break her friends and enemies at will.

But all is not as it seems in the rowdy, merry court of Charles II. Since the Restoration, old political alliances have frayed, and there are whispers that the king is moving to divorce his barren queen, who some wouldn't mind seeing dead. But Alice, loyal only to a select few, is devoted to the queen, and so sets out to discover who might be making sinister plans, and if her own father is one of them. When a member of the royal family dies unexpectedly, and poison is suspected, the stakes are raised. Alice steps up her efforts to find out who is and isn't true to the queen, learns of shocking betrayals throughout the court, and meets a man she may be falling in love with and who may spoil all of her plans. With the suspected arrival of a known poison-maker, the atmosphere in the court electrifies, and suddenly the safety of the king himself seems uncertain. Secret plots are at play, and war is on the horizon, but will it be with the Dutch or the French? And has King Charles himself betrayed his country for greed?

The long-awaited prequel to Koen's beloved Through a Glass Darkly, Dark Angels is a feast of a novel that sparkles with all the passion, extravagance, danger, and scandal of 17th-century England.

Don't miss the next title, Through a Glass Darkly.
(P)2006 Books on Tape

Critic reviews

"Koen blends history, mystery, and romance to craft a historical romance that will delight fans of the genre." ( Publishers Weekly)

What listeners say about Dark Angels

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars

Escapism

I took this book on holiday with me and found it to be everything I expected. If you enjoy a good story if a little predictable this book entertains and keeps you listening. The characters are engaging and easy to imagine. It made good holiday reading, if you are looking for an intellectual read this is not it.

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Teen fiction but not.

Would have loved elements of this as a 13 year old but it isn't meant for such a young audience so don't be fooled. Maybe if you are not familiar with the period or history at all, this would be entertaining but I found it quite over-explained and repetitive. Light relief. Nothing wrong with that.

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for M
  • M
  • 01-06-08

Dark Angels

Karleen Koen's first novel "Through a Glass Darkly is one of my favorite reads, over the years I have enjoyed it several times. Her next novel was the third part of the trilogy and was almost boring so I was unsure of how "Dark Angels" would be. I was thrilled! This first part of the huge historical drama kept me anxious to keep listening. The details of the English court seemed quite accurate and once again I found myself caught up in the personal lives of the characters and left wanting more. The reader was excellent. If you like "costume dramas" and the works of Jane Austen, Georgette Heyer, George Elliot, etc., you will love this book.

10 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Kareen D.
  • 06-06-07

Outstanding

As the prequel to Through a Glass Darkly this story sets the stage beautifully. For any lover of 18th and 19th century British royalty themes, this would be the book for you. Emotional, exciting, intriguing and speculative. The reader, through excellent vocal effects, brought the players to life and easily pulled you into the story. Truely an enjoyable listen. If you like this story, don't miss Through A Glass Darkly.

14 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Cat
  • 11-03-11

Unexpected

I tend to follow narraters and particular authors. Donada Peters is a fav. I really didn't know what to expect from this book but it was amazing. There were several unexpected twist and the book was very well written. Will follow this author now.

4 people found this helpful

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  • Teresa Fant
  • 27-04-22

Love this story!!!

Rich characters, thrilling plot. I never tire of this book. I've read and listened to it more times than I can count.

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Profile Image for Maritza Marrero King
  • Maritza Marrero King
  • 09-11-20

loved it

Most memorial read, loved the characters and I wish she would have written another book detailing the couples life together after finding each other.

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  • Aislinn Clapp
  • 22-03-19

One of the Greatest Books Ever!!!

Loved it!!! So glad for an unabridged Karleen Koen...now if only we could get" Through a Glass Darkly"or "Now Face to Face" unabridged!!!!

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  • Elizabeth A. Morris
  • 14-08-18

Perhaps a different narrator?

I loved Karleen Koen’s first two novels but I can’t get through this one. It just never catches my attention. I find my mind wandering and I realize I have completely tuned the audio out. I do think I might have enjoyed this novel more with a different narrator. Ms. Peters seems like she is just reading, not really invested in her performance. Editing is not great either. Perhaps I will try reading this one rather than listen.

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  • Nick
  • 23-04-17

engrossing story from the beginning, however...

Having read Through A Glass Darkly years ago, I knew I would enjoy this book. Really liked the fact that it was a long one... in listening to it, it seemed liked the story would go on and on without ending. When you don't want a book to end, that's always a good sign. So, I wasnt quite prepared when it did, and so abruptly. There just seemed to be a lot of details still dangling in the air, unresolved. Nevertheless, still a great book and the narrator was top notch.

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  • C.J.
  • 21-02-16

Wonderful

Masterfully performed. The narrator and the story were a perfect marriage. I enjoyed this one so much I will probably read Through a glass darkly for the umpteenth time.

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  • Yuefang
  • 10-05-14

I Love It!!!!

At first the narrator caught my attention, she's done very excellent performance, then when the story began keep my interest, I can't help to hit pause so I can do other things. I'm always picky to some classic but this is a must buy!