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Speak Daggers To Her [Paperback]

4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
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Book Description

Nov. 1 1995
Working as a freelance graphic designer and reading tarot cards on the side, white witch Karen "Bast" Hightower turns detective to learn why a close friend has died suddenly and must infiltrate New York's occult underground. Reprint. PW.

Product Details

Product Description

From Publishers Weekly

This adroit and often sardonic blend of New York City hip and New Age neo-Paganism begins with a death, maybe by witchcraft, and introduces a modern witch as sleuth. Bast, whose mundane name is Karen Hightower, receives a desperate phone call from Lace Devereaux, who has just discovered the body of her lover, Miriam Seabrook. Bast becomes suspicious about the death, especially after discovering that the victim's ceremonial knife, her athame , is missing. Long a hanger-on in occult circles, Miriam had recently joined a new, highly secretive coven and had cut herself off from her old friends and haunts. Bast trawls the "New York Metropagan Community" for clues, drawing both indifference and threatening anonymous phone calls. She tracks down Ruslan, the authoritarian head of Miriam's coven, Baba Yaga, who is searching for the Khazar Wicca , an illustrated book purporting to contain the coven's rituals. Despite her reliance on capital letters, Regency romance author Edghill ( Fleeting Fancy ) deftly evokes the witchly milieu, exposing its factions and politics. Bast is a quirky, honorable protagonist whom readers will look forward to seeing again.
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Library Journal

Regency romance writer Edghill ( Fleeting Fancy , LJ 3/15/92) introduces a thirtysomething Manhattan layout artist and witch (goddess worshiper) in this likable and lighthearted--if somewhat vacuous--murder mystery. After the sudden death of a younger friend, who has been casting about for a splinter occult group to join, Karen Hightower (a.k.a. Bast) suspects foul play. Her amateurish searches for evidence take her to occult bookstores, Wiccan covens, and magic rituals. A fanciful, fast read.
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

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Most helpful customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Enter Bast the Witch April 28 2004
Fantasy mysteries are getting more and more popular. SPEAK DAGGERS TO HER by Rosemary Edghill was one of the earlier efforts. This is the first of a series of mysteries staring Bast the witch.
If you happen to have any knowledge of Wicca, Neo-Paganism, Gardnerian and all of the rest you should get a kick out of this book.
Bast is called by a friend and fellow coven member when a mutual friend dies. While handling all of the details Bast comes across some inconsistencies. Miriam, who we never see alive, recently joined a Russian based sect that boasts that their power struck her down when she tried to abandon the group. Bast investigates further and gets drawn into the sect.
There are two reasons that this book can be considered cross-genre. The first is that only a science fiction fan will get all of the science fiction jokes, plugs, analogies and whatnot the pepper the book liberally. The other is the element of magic. Because it is talked about in religious terms it is left to the reader to decide whether magic or coincidence plays a role in the events.
Rosemary Edghill is both a mystery and a fantasy author. However, I have one small problem with the book. While Bast continually uses science fiction references there is absolutely no mention of her reading or watching the stuff. Other than that I found it to be a very enjoyable book. You will probably find it in the mystery section although the spine is unlabeled.
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5.0 out of 5 stars An irreverent, sharp-edged mystery Jan. 10 1997
By A Customer
If you're tired of the same old thing in your mysteries, if you think you'll scream if you see another Agatha Christie reissue, here's a book that will alternately have you rolling with laughter and gripping the sides of your chair in suspense.

The narrator Bast (Karen Hightower only to those who don't know her at all) is a heroine quite different from any you've seen before. She's a member of the New York City wiccan community, and while I don't know much about wiccan, I can vouch that the wry humor about New York City, as lived by the unsung many who are just above the poverty line, but way below the Park Avenue co-op crowd, is dead on. The subways are crowded, unpleasant, and always marginally scary, but the heroine rides them anyway; there's no other way to get around if you can't afford cabs. And the apartments range from classic lofts where a modern day Madame de Stael holds court among her New Age friends, to an upper, upper West Side apartment whose living room has been furnished by "people who have always been roommates." The book is also, when it turns to death by black magic, quite terrifying, in an understated fashion that makes it all the more horrific.

Rosemary Edghill--already known to her fans as a writer of topnotch Regencies and fantasy--has turned to the mystery genre with great effect.
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By A Customer
This book is wonderful. It is a murder mystery set in NYC's Wiccan community. Ms. Edghill's descriptions of both NYC and the Wiccan community are on target. She also manages to weave the thread of Wicca into the story so that it is an integral part of the plot. She doesn't use it for shock value or just to have a hook. It's a must read for anyone who enjoys a good mystery, whether Wiccan or not
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5.0 out of 5 stars compelling -- can not put down! Feb. 5 1998
By A Customer
I was delighted to find Speak Daggers to Her. It was a top notch, fast paced, easy to read mystery. If you are a witch or a pagan, you MUST read this book. It is one of the few that accurately portrays modern witchcraft. Others might want to learn the truth about wicca in a painless way. I couldn't put this book down, and I raced through it.
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By A Customer
Simply wonderful. It's a bit light, but sometimes we need a good, easy read. My favorite part of this book and the second in the series was Edghill's excellent character development of Bast, our reluctant heroine. Highly recommended for a dark night when it's a touch cool outside and the wind knocking at your door.
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