Review: Curse of the Specter Queen by Jenny Elder Moke

Curse of the Specter QueenCurse of the Specter Queen by Jenny Elder Moke
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

**3.5-stars rounded up**

Curse of the Specter Queen is an YA Archaeological Adventure story set in the 1920s, written by Jenny Elder Moke.

Samantha Knox works at an antique bookshop where she repairs damaged books. She receives an extra-special volume one day from the Professor of a childhood friend, Bennett.

The diary is said to contain secrets to an occult ritual that could possibly raise the Morrigan, a goddess from Celtic folklore said to be a harbinger of war and death.

Sam doesn’t think too much of the diary at first, but when dangerous men break into her shop looking for it, she begins to realize its greatly powerful value.

Pairing up with her estranged best friend, Joana, and Joana’s brother, Bennett, Sam flees from Illinois to Ireland in order to reunite with the Professor and try to solve the mystery of the diary.

Of utmost importance, is keeping the diary out of the hands of any evil-doers who may be seeking it for their own diabolical purposes.

On the steamer journey from New York to Ireland, Sam, Joana and Bennett meet up with Philip, a classmate of Bennett’s, and the four spend the trip chumming around, bickering and trying to decipher the message they found hidden within the diary.

It is clear after someone breaks into Sam’s room that the villains are still hot on their trail.

Once the foursome arrive in Ireland the stakes get higher as they come into contact with even more individuals seeking the diary.

It’s a race against time as Sam and friends try to decipher the clues and prevent the baddies from summoning the Morrigan.

This was a fun story. It took me a long time to read it, I’m not really sure why, but upon reflection I don’t think it was the book’s fault.

I enjoyed watching Sam decipher the clues. It was nice to have a heroine use her mind as her number weapon, versus swords and fists.

At times, I felt like the characters were a little lackluster, but overall, it was a compelling adventure. The ending definitely leads me to believe there may be further books in this world.

I would definitely be willing to pick up more stories featuring Sam as a protagonist. While she did gain a lot of self-confidence over the course of this story, I think there is still so much more room for her to grow.

If you are interested in ancient Celtic folklore, legends, archaeological artifacts, ciphers, books featuring books and mysterious orders, you should absolutely check this one out. It may be the perfect adventure for you!

Thank you so much to the publisher, Disney-Hyperion, for providing me with a copy to read and review. I appreciate the opportunity and hope to see more Samantha Knox in the future!

View all my reviews

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *