Fever Season

Fever Season The summer of has been one of brazen heat and brutal pestilence as the city is stalked by Bronze John the popular name for the deadly cholera epidemic that tests the healing skills of doctor and

  • Title: Fever Season
  • Author: Barbara Hambly
  • ISBN: 9780553102543
  • Page: 408
  • Format: Hardcover
  • The summer of 1833 has been one of brazen heat and brutal pestilence, as the city is stalked by Bronze John the popular name for the deadly cholera epidemic that tests the healing skills of doctor and voodoo alike Benjamin January s Paris medical training keeps him all night long with the dying at Charity Hospital Then his work as a music teacher takes him out again inThe summer of 1833 has been one of brazen heat and brutal pestilence, as the city is stalked by Bronze John the popular name for the deadly cholera epidemic that tests the healing skills of doctor and voodoo alike Benjamin January s Paris medical training keeps him all night long with the dying at Charity Hospital Then his work as a music teacher takes him out again into the fetid, empty midday streets Empty except for Cora Chouteau, a dark skinned plantation waif come to town in search of her lover, sold in slavery to one of its prominent families Though January s certain she s a runaway, he agrees to try to pass a message to the man she seeks Soon, however, he learns that Cora is accused of murdering her lecherous master, Otis Redfern, and poisoning his wife almost to death Yet it seems that Emily Redfern herself, iron willed and socially ambitious, had cause to wish her profligate husband dead And Cora, too or so the girl insists Before Ben can unpick one story from the other, Cora disappears into the torrid night Risking both his life and his freedom, Ben pursues the truth through a lush and fevered world of opulent town houses, grim cemeteries, and raucous taverns.

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      Published :2019-02-20T15:07:09+00:00

    One thought on “Fever Season”

    1. I can't praise this book enough. The mystery portion was excellent and the continuing characters are rapidly becoming favorites of mine. Set in New Orleans in the 1830s, portions are based on actual events as related in newspapers and other historical documents. Yet the mystery portion pales beside the atmospheric background as we reap the benefit of Hambly's extensive research and evocative prose.

    2. Wow, my first impression upon closing this book, I was actually muttering the word over and over to myself until Ron asked me what I was doing. I just couldn't come up with any other words, my mind was still trying to filter through all of the things I had just experienced. From gut wrenching, almost stomach emptying scenes of human depravity and cruelty to the beautiful simplicity of one human taking the gigantic step of learning to trust another human. In between you have the cruelty of the di [...]

    3. Benjamin January is working at a hospital during a yellow fever epidemic. (Yellow fever is transmitted by mosquitos, and due to being endemic in Africa, many people from Africa have some level of immunity. The characters in the book are aware of the latter fact but not the former, and have no useful treatment even if they did know the cause.) Meanwhile, both free people of color and slaves are mysteriously vanishing. In more cheerful news— well, cheerful for a while— Ben meets Rose, a free w [...]

    4. This is a very good historical mystery, set in New Orleans in the 1830's during a summer outbreak of yellow fever. When people of color begin to quietly disappear, it's uncertain at first whether they're dropping dead from the fever, which can overcome a person with shocking speed, or if an even more sinister fate has befallen them.Hambly's writing is lush and vivid, and she brings the rather horrific setting to life. (The city was a cesspool even before people started dying all over the place. [...]

    5. This was the first of the Benjamin January series that I read and I was reluctant to start. So many books which deal with slavery in the south are hokey or very politically correct. This one (and others in the series) deals with it in an open-minded and informative way (and no, it doesn't at all condone it).While race is an underlying theme in these books, it is not the implicit point of them. They are convoluted mysteries, well presented in the context of New Orleans and environs in the 1830's. [...]

    6. The second of Barbara Hambly's Benjamin January series manages to hit the big trifecta of "reasons to be very glad you're living in 21st century America": we now know what causes diseases like yellow fever and cholera and how to cure them; we've abolished chattel slavery; and we let women pursue education and careers if they want to.And it does all this in the context of an engrossing and troubling mystery about a certain type of person disappearing that's (loosely) based on reports of an actual [...]

    7. Woweee. What a novel! Set in New Orleans in 1834, this is a complex historical thriller that is written in a tightly plotted, descriptive, way as only Barbara Hambly can dish up. We get to meet Rose Vitric for the first time, and the underlaying story shook me up to no end. It's a devilishly clever and well-written book.For the longer review, please go here:epinions/review/Barbar

    8. I read this book years ago and it stuck in my mind and resurfaces every now and again. It came up today during a conversation about afro punk, victorians, and voodoo (hanging with academicss what we do). Anyway, this book is an excellent drama that touches upon class, race, racism, voodoo, family bonds, and the hypocrisy of religious zealots. I recommend it for anyone who enjoys murder mysteries, historical fiction,and light horror.

    9. Hambly's writing is as evocative as ever, as she continues this series set in 1830s New Orleans. The divisions between Creole and American, free colored and enslaved black are as stark as ever, but the portrayal of how members of the different groups interact with each other are nuanced and fascinating. It's a grim book in many ways, but I can't help but want to read more about Benjamin January and his friends (and enemies).

    10. A very entertaining mystery and a pretty authentic look at 19th century New Orleans society.Aiso, a pretty interesting afterword.

    11. It strikes me as very risky for a writer to write an historical "whodunnit" featuring an actual infamous figure from the past. This particular person is not exactly a household name, but for someone who (like me) has taken more than one Haunted History tour of New Orleans, it probably won't take long before the reader figures out why a particular name sounds so familiar. And when one of the central goals of mystery writing is to keep your readers guessing, it's not exactly a great idea to give t [...]

    12. This novel is the second in a series about 1830s New Orleans and Benjamin January, a free man of color (title of the first novel). Benjamin is a medical doctor who only practices medicine in the summer when the fever season mysteriously kills hundreds of people. Otherwise, he teaches piano lessons or is hired to play at balls. He is a "free man of color," but he is always worried about his own welfare, since he is very tall and very black. He is always in danger of being mistaken for a slave and [...]

    13. I've only fairly recently developed the ability to leave books unread if I'm not enjoying them, but having got 150 pages into a 400+ novel with barely any plot development, I felt pretty justified in returning this to the library without finishing it.I was really interested in the premise/setting of the book ("free man of color" surgeon/pianist Benjamin January navigates 1830s New Orleans in the middle of a cholera epidemic), but given that it was theoretically a mystery novel, I found the lack [...]

    14. Benjamin January spends most of the book sleep deprived from working too many shifts at the hospital during a yellow fever epidemic. It gives the book a hazy tone, making the reader share an almost trance like state as our hero stumbles around amidst the worst conditions that nature and man can throw at a person. The ending of the mystery drags on for quite some time, and then ends on a very weird and sudden note – made all the weirder by the author’s note at the end explaining how she did n [...]

    15. Masterfully crafted, the events follow necessities imposed by the stratification of pre-Civil War New Orleans' society. Benjamin January ends up detective because he is a free man of color, and cannot count on the white authorities. Following disappearances, a murder that is not what it seems, and the strange behavior of one of the most powerful women in the city, January risks his life and his freedom to find answers.Thematically, and dramatically focusing on the tenuous nature of freedom for c [...]

    16. Another enjoyable Benjamin January suspense. Familiar characters with unknown new ones make this story well worth reading. Ms Hambly continues her good storytelling with vivid depictions of 1830s New Orleans. My one complaint would be that she was too good with the often distasteful details. A bit too much about the deplorable conditions of those days with rodents everywhere, waste product stenches all around, dead animal carcasses in ditches, filth and muck and roaches and mosquitoes in abundan [...]

    17. I'm wondered, while reading this book, whether mysteries might change the world more than the other books I am reading, which are profound and scholarly reflections on justice and history. Here's a quote: (p.185 in paperback)"Men don't need to be evil, Mademoiselle. They just have to be bad enough to say, 'There's nothing I can do.'" I was talking to someone about a man I knew who won awards for designing the delivery system for napalm. "Was he a good man?" she asked. You tell me.

    18. Hambly spins a compelling tale of Creole society in New Orleans in the early 1800's, with a mystery based on an actual case. Benjamin January is a likable and intelligent protagonist with some maddening blind spots. A good series, although I find myself bracing for something awful to happen to January. Both books I've read reveal the true horrors of slavery and the ownership of human beings.

    19. I read this whole series over and over. They're so densely plotted that I often lose track of the thread of the story. That would usually kill a book for me (see Lempriere's Dictionary) but with these I don't even care - it's spending time in historical New Orleans with Hambly's amazing cast of characters that keeps me coming back.One of my favorite series, in any genre.

    20. A thoroughly enjoyable book, a historical-mystery-suspense hybrid. This one was darker and stronger than the first in the series, IMO, a little bit more noir, although M. Janvier will always be too soft in the center to be a true hardboiled detective.

    21. I enjoyed this book more than the first in the series, but I still skimmed passages near the end. Although I enjoy history and appreciate detail, I find these books overwritten on both the sentence and scene level. I'd probably read the next installment, but I'm not going out of my way to find it.

    22. A superb crime novel which reprises the role of former slave, Benjamin January, as the unwitting solver of injustice. Set in New Orleans in the 1830s, this novel describes in details the splendours and dangers of the city. Disease, filth and crime are rampant. In this novel former slaves are going missing and January seeks, within the upper societal echelons and the seething lanes and hovels, an answer to the disappearances. This is a well-structured, fast-paced novel with an intriguing cast of [...]

    23. This is an incredible book that really places you there and in this case, includes a real person who did unspeakable things to add to the authenticitycolewbrown/2015

    24. I liked the first book fine, but somehow this one I had trouble slogging through the first few chapters and I have so many books I want to read that I just decided not to go on.

    25. Fever Season by Barbara Hambly is the second book in the Benjamin January series. Benjamin is finally becoming comfortable in his hometown of New Orleans in 1833, returning after a sixteen-year absence and recovering from the events of the previous book, A Free Man of Color. Cholera has settled into the city for the summer, leaving it largely abandoned and his work as a musician in little need, so he's working at the local hospital caring for the many sick and dying from the dread illness known [...]

    26. This is the second of the Benjamin January novels, and features an interesting character and situation.Benjamin is working at Charity Hospital during the yellow fever and cholera plague of 1833/34, alongside Marie Laveau and Delphine Lalaurie, the latter a well-to-do Creole woman whose third husband (she is twice widowed) is a physician. Benjamin teaches piano to Delphine's daughters.Anyway, slaves are disappearing all over the quarter, and most people are putting it down to disease but Benjami [...]

    27. historical mystery novel with some likeable central characters and very disturbing tale drawn from New Orleans history.I enjoyed Hambly's lushly written prose in the first Benjamin January novel, A Free Man of Color, but in this the prose seemed overwritten - maybe because this time Hambly was frequently describing the fetid heat of new Orleans in summer, the gutters choked with corpses of rats and dogs, and the stench of sick rooms full of people dying of yellow fever and cholera in the previou [...]

    28. I liked this book for a lot of the same reasons I liked the first one: the time period, the setting, the characters etc.Like A Free Man of Color, New Orleans is almost like another character in the book. The descriptions are vivid, engaging all the senses. The heat of summer was almost a living entity in its own right. The terrible fever of the title was like a horrible monster stalking the streets.Benjamin January works at Charity Hospital doing what he can to save lives. If you have a weak sto [...]

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