Cross My Heart (Cross My Heart #1)

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4.2 (2)
 
3.7 (1)
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Cross My Heart (Cross My Heart #1)
Author(s)
Age Range
12+
Release Date
March 13, 2012
ISBN
0385741502
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Venice, 1585.When 16-year-old Laura della Scala learns that her older sister, Beatrice, has drowned, she is given no time to grieve. Instead, Laura's father removes her from the convent where he forcibly sent her years earlier and orders her to marry Beatrice's fiancé, a repulsive old merchant named Vincenzo. Panicked, Laura betrays a powerful man to earn her way into the Segreta, a shadowy society of women who deal in only one currency—secrets. The Segreta seems like the answer to Laura's prayers. The day after she joins their ranks, Vincenzo is publicly humiliated and conveniently exiled. Soon, however, Laura begins to suspect that her sister's death was not a tragic accident but a cold-blooded murder—one that might involve the Segreta and the women she has come to trust.

Editor reviews

2 reviews

A Nice Debut
Overall rating 
 
4.0
Plot 
 
4.0
Characters 
 
4.0
Writing Style 
 
4.0
If you want to experience old world Venice as if you're actually living in it, this is the book for you. Beautiful descriptions and sensory detail weave into Venetian politics and intrigue to form a gorgeous backdrop for the story. The premise is intriguing as well, though I felt rushed through the plot. I wanted to examine each instance of deceit a bit longer and spend more time getting to know the romantic interest so I could truly feel invested in the outcome. I didn't connect with the characters (perhaps because I felt rushed) like I wanted to, but this is still a story that stayed with me long after I closed the cover.
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A Strong Historical Fiction Debut
Overall rating 
 
4.3
Plot 
 
4.0
Characters 
 
5.0
Writing Style 
 
4.0
Cross My Heart by Sasha Gould is an epic story of indulgence, secrets, and forbidden love. It was a lovely historical fiction debut from Sasha Gould, and I am very eager to see what Sasha Gould will come up with next.

I was entranced by the gorgeous writing of Cross My Heart. Sasha Gould can weave a wonderful tale. The were parts of the plot that seemed a bit random in execution to me. That’s not to say I didn’t enjoy it, because I did, I just didn’t know where some of the plot points were coming from. That aside, Cross My Heart really had a cool plot. I loved the aspect of the secret society, the banter between all the characters, and the relationships formed throughout the course of the novel.

The relationship between Laura and Giacoma was really cute. It felt a bit rushed at first, but that was overshadowed by everything that happened following their beginning. I really loved both of them as characters. Laura had spunk, which is always fun in a historical fiction book. The characters were such a fun mix. Faustina was so awesome, there’s no other way to put it. The secondary characters all really stood out in my mind.

Cross My Heart is a must read for fans of historical fiction. The setting was enchanting and I just loved the story. I am very excited to see what is next for Sasha Gould.

On a totally side note, I wasn’t exactly feeling the cover at first. After reading Cross My Heart, I was excited to find that the cover made perfect sense with the happenings of the book, so major props to Random House for a cover that actually deals with the books contents!
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User reviews

1 reviews

Overall rating 
 
3.7
Plot 
 
4.0  (1)
Characters 
 
3.0  (1)
Writing Style 
 
4.0  (1)
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Lush Historical Fiction Debut
Overall rating 
 
3.7
Plot 
 
4.0
Characters 
 
3.0
Writing Style 
 
4.0
My heart went out to Laura from the beginning. How could I not feel for all of the poor girls that were thrust into convents for such awful reasons, regardless of the girls' own inclinations. Laura's narration was rather heartbreaking. As you start reading, it's just so evident that she is completely without hope for her own life; she has given up entirely. So young and her life is already effectively over. Although she is not the brightest (and she lacks worldly knowledge because she spent so many years in the convent), Laura does the best that she can, and, because of this, she made a good heroine. The hero was pretty great, too, but I'll leave him a surprise.

Secret societies aren't generally my cup of tea. This one, though, I found much more scintillating than usual. What I loved was that it was a group of women, marginalized in society, but controlling Venice behind the scenes. No one is safe from the actions of the Segreta, even the Doge, the ruler of the city. Of course, they're just as corrupt as male political groups, but I do like to see women getting revenge on the patriarchy.

I also found myself doing a lot of thinking about courtship in that time period. Of course, I knew already that fiancees were regularly swapped to a different child, as though they are interchangeable, and that marriages were arranges after only a handful of meetings. So, none of it was new, but, for some reason, I found myself really thinking about the reality of living that life. Even the guy she gets a crush on, she only meets him a couple of times before they begin an illicit relationship of exchanging letters and talking when they catch a moment alone. Given the limited freedom women had, relationships escalated so quickly.

Cross My Heart is well-written and entertaining. If you love young adult literature or historical fiction, you'll want to get your hands on this one. I know I'll be reading more novels by Sasha Gould! Plus, look at the pretty cover!
Good Points
Powerful women
Plotting
Secret Societies!
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