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The Steal

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Diamonds are forever, or are they?  Now that depends upon who has them, who kept them and where they wind up.  A suspenseful story that will keep your interest.  Written by two of my favorite authors, you can't go  wrong.
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I received a free ARC ebook from NetGalley in exchange for an unbiased review.

The Steal is an enjoyable read; I would have given it three stars except for the rather abrupt ending. Obviously another entry in a series is planned but this title's end just seems unsatisfactory and incomplete. Even books in a series should have a conclusion, albeit a temporary one.

Set in the glittery world of Cannes in the late 1950s, Ania Throne is a famous jewelry designer to the stars. Her new collection, set to be worn by the likes of Elizabeth Taylor and Audrey Hepburn, represents her best work. She appears as hard and determined as the diamonds she styles. The collection is also the target of the jewel thief known as The Leopard. Enter insurance investigator Jerome Curtis, a World War II veteran with secrets of his own. It is he who believes the theft to be the work of the elusive Leopard.

While reading this book I imagined it as a movie, perhaps starring Gregory Peck or William Holden. Both actors carry that weary, lonely air as they move about. I had trouble casting Ania. But for Ania and Jerome, their suddenly dangerous quest to save the remainder of the Throne jewels has them traveling to Paris and New York. Gortner's plot is well paced with the glamorous settings adding to the story.
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I loved the Old Hollywood feel of this one!! It was so fun!! The ending did seem a little abrupt, but knowing that it is a series makes that make more sense!
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Set in 1950’s # The Steal is by M.J. Rose and C.W. Gortner. Taking place in Paris at the famous Carlton hotel. It’s a race against time…..
Thank you for the advance copy,
#Netgalley and #Blue Box Press
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Now that I've learned this will be a series I'm less upset about the terribly abrupt ending.

This book gave me vibes of 50s Hollywood with the glitz and glamour of that era.

I didn't know was that it was a novella - which is OK - or that it was the first in a series and ended on a cliffhanger - I had to do research to confirm and then gave it a higher rating because of this.

Jerome and Ania is literally full of jetsetting from the glitz and glamour of Canne, across continents, and across boundaries

The Steal is a mystery with a hint of romance along for the ride.
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This was a quick, fast read about a jewelry heist in Paris in the last 50's.  It was perfect for a Sunday afternoon read.
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I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book.  It kept me in engaged although I felt the story wasn’t complete enough.  Come to find out, it is the first of a series of 3.  I guess I would have enjoyed it more if all three had been put together in one book.  The story centers around the insurance investigation of a jewel theft and has several twists and turns along the way including some romance.  The characters are well developed and relatable.  I did buy the second book and found it really doesn’t stand alone without having read this one.
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This was a fun, quick read! I was intrigued because the cover, along with the description, felt reminiscent of Alfred Hitchcock’s To Catch a Thief, and I was not disappointed. 

Ania is a fascinating main character, in her strength, the way she carries herself, and the way she uses her femininity as a weapon, and I can’t wait to read more of her perspective. She feels like a very powerful, determined heroine, and I hope that only continues to be further cemented throughout the next two books in this series. 

I enjoyed reading Ania and Jerome’s relationship, especially their moments of snarky banter. I did feel that their relationship progressed entirely too quickly, but due to the length of the book, it is understandable. 

My only complaint is that I wish the book could have been longer so that we could have explored the characters some more and their relationship could have had a bit of a slower burn. 

Regardless, I still would absolutely recommend this book to anyone looking for a light and fun mystery romance. Given it’s short length, it’s perfect for anyone looking to pull themselves out of a slump.
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The book is short being only 138 pages.  However it has something for everyone is this quick but wonderful read.  Ania Throne is the daughter of a famous jewelry designed.  The jewels are stolen on the way to a show.  The book contains high crime, investigations, romance and travel.  Each page is action packed.
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When a security expert is sent to solve the theft of millions in jewelry the designer is not impressed. Ania is having a showing in Cannes at the film festival and is shocked when her cases are all stolen despite the heavy security she hired.  Jerome Curtis thinks he’s seen it all, especially when it comes to crime. Until he’s hired to investigate the loss of Ania Thorne’s collection, his every skill put to the test as he chases after a mysterious master-mind responsible for some of the costliest heists in history—and finds himself in a tangled web with a woman he really shouldn’t fall in love with. This is part of a series with a twist leading into the next book.  I received a copy of this ARC in exchange for a fair and honest review.
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This story takes place during the late 1950's, in the exciting locations of Cannes, Paris, and New York City.  For years, Thorne Jewelers has made exquisite masterpieces for the fabulously wealthy, and stars such as Elizabeth Taylor and Audrey Hepburn.  After Virgil Thorne's retirement, his daughter, 𝑨𝒏𝒊𝒂 takes over. She is in Cannes when her jewels are stolen, much to her chagrin as she deals with the angry stars! 

𝑱𝒆𝒓𝒐𝒎𝒆 𝑪𝒖𝒓𝒕𝒊𝒔 is the representative from the insurance company. He suspects the robbery is the work of the notorious jewel thief known as The Leopard. It is Jerome’s job to question everyone. He hopes to find the stolen jewels and save the company millions of dollars. 

At first sparks fly between Ania and Jerome. But soon they realize their attraction for each other and they join forces to find the thief, not realizing what the personal cost will be when they discover the truth. 

𝑴𝒚 𝑻𝒉𝒐𝒖𝒈𝒉𝒕𝒔: I loved the chemistry between Ania and Jerome and I would have loved to have seen even more dialogue and interaction surrounding them! This story definitely had 𝑻𝒐 𝑪𝒂𝒕𝒄𝒉 𝑨 𝑻𝒉𝒊𝒆𝒇 vibes with the glamorous locations, glittering jewels, and beautiful women. I don't think I have read a story surrounding a jewel heist before. The theft was surprising and stunning and the chase was even better. The ending took me totally by surprise and I was immediately ready for the next book in the series!

My thanks to NetGalley and the publishers at Blue Box Press for my ebook. My thoughts are my own.
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This was a delightful quick read.  A jewelry caper, romance,  action filled scenes in beautiful countries., this story kept me captivated.  
Many thanks to Blue Box Press and to NetGalley for providing me with a galley in exchange for my honest opinion.
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Thank you to @blueboxpress and @letstalkbooks for the digital review copy of The Steal, to read in advance of The Bait for it's blog tour.

The Steal is part one (of I'm not sure hoe many) of a series of novellas set in the 1950's surrounding Ania Thorne and her jewelry business.  In this installment, Ania is in Cannes with her new collection of pieces, ready to have them worn by celebrities until a mysterious jewel thief known only as the leopard manages to steal them all.  In comes insurance investigator Jerome Curtis, trying to solve the case and return the jewels before her employer has to pay out the policy they are covered under.  

This was a quick little read, setting me up to immediately read The Bait.  I liked the mystery of watching Ania and Jerome trying to solve the case.  There was also some romance thrown in between the two main characters which I hope will develop throughout the rest of the series.
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The summary of this book reminded me a bit of the film "To Catch A Thief", but it really was a bit different than that, and I really enjoyed the story line.  Set in the late 1950s, a former intelligence officer is sent to Cannes to investigate the theft of a jewel collection just before the Film Festival.  This leads to lots of action and even a little romance.  The setting, mostly in France, is enticing, as are the descriptions of the jewels.  It was a fun read with a very unexpected ending!  I look forward to a possible sequel!
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This is such a fun 1957 caper. The book is set in Cannes with a backdrop of all the most glamorous actresses in Hollywood from Elizabeth Taylor to Audrey Hepburn. 

As the head jewelry designer at her family's company, Ania is a strong woman, far ahead of her time. Jerome is the insurance investigator assigned to the case when millions in jewels are stolen. 

I loved the dual first person perspectives from Jerome and Ania. The tone of this was great, an extremely fast and engrossing read. The story ends with just enough of a conclusion while leaving excitement for the next installment.

Thank you to Blue Box Press and NetGalley for the advanced reader copy of this book. These opinions are my own.
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A jewel thief pulls off a huge job in Cannes.  It is devastating for the jewelry company run by Ania.  Enter Jerome, the insurance company representative.  He has been searching for this thief for years.  So he works with the jeweler to protect what jewelry she has sent from the New York office.  The thief tries to rob her of this load too.  But Ania and Jerome out smart him.  The book is a good mystery of who the thief is and try to get ahead of where he will strike next.  And the romance is nice too, I liked the book.
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📚The Steal📚
This is a fast paced caper. A quick read that got me hooked since the first chapter.

This is the story of the theft of some pieces of jewellery and the search for it. The main characters are the insurance investigator, Jerome Curtis, and the jewell maker, Ania Thorne. They both have a lot to lose so they set out to find the legendary thief, the Leopard.

The story is entertaining and the characters likeable. The story is mostly told by the characters though. The description aren't too long but the reader get the sense of whereabouts or the people the characters are with. The beginning is more dense with information but all ends up being relevant to the story. Those looking for a engaging caper in a past time, this is definitely a great choice.

 This romantic caper was at times cliché, but by the end of the book I could only hope for a sequel.

This eARC was given to me by #BlueBoxPress and  @netgalley in return of an honest opinion.

 #TheSteal #igbooks #crime #CWGortner #MJRose #netgalley #heist  #caper #igreads #instabook #ilovereading #bibliophile #book# #bookishfeatures #booksliterature #booklover #bookstagramportugal
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A fun, clever romp through Cannes, Paris, and New York featuring a classy, smart jewelry artist and business executive paired with a rumpled, smart-alecky ex-soldier turned insurance investigator. This is the kind of book you pick up in an airport and devour in between and on flights then leave somewhere for another bored traveler.

Overall appealing writing and a fanciful plot that whisks you through the fairyland of post-war Europe inhabited by film stars and very rich people. This would make a wonderful madcap rom-com-mystery movie. A very pleasant interlude….
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Well-imagined and a creative, romantic setting and story. But I couldn't get into the story - maybe it was the informal, chatty POV of the MC?
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C.W. Gortner is one of my top favorite author's. So much so, that I went on a binge this Summer; Reading every single historical novel that he has published. I first discovered how authentic his writing is when I first read and reviewed "The First Actress: A Novel of Sarah Bernhardt." It made a very huge and lasting impression on me. My other two top favorites are: "The Vatican Princess," which is a historical novel about Lucrezia Borgia and "The Confessions of Catherine de Medici." Nobody else that I am aware of can write about women using the first person narrative in such a convincing style. He also wrote two books about Queen Isabella of Spain, Mademoiselle Chanel and Marlene Dietrich, among many others'. I guess, you could intuit that when I noticed that he collaborated with M.J. Rose to write, "The Steal," I have been excited to read it and it did not disappoint me!

This one was an excellent short novella, that I have been savoring to read, but wanted to save it, takes place in 1957 during the International Cannes Film Festival. It doesn't cover the famous festival. It is basically about a huge jewelry heist of millions of dollars of stolen jewels to adorn the movie stars attending it. Elizabeth Taylor, Sophia Loren and Audrey Hepburn are among the many lucky recipients that were supposed to be adorned with precious diamonds, rubies and emeralds all specially designed for them in particular.

The jewelry designer is Ania Thorne, whom has been groomed by her now infamous father ever since she was a child. She could be found drawing intricate designs of jewelry in her father's study ever since she was six years old. Her mother who died was very much embarrassed that her husband, Virgil Thorne, had expected his only child to draw pictures of ornate jewels instead of stick figured people and houses like most children. Ania is one cool character, now at the young age of twenty-eight to be the Director of Thorne & Company. She admits to having diamond dust running through her blood. She has devoted hundreds of hours specially designing this collection that is stolen the morning before the first gala is to take place.

Jerome Curtis, is the investigator from Lambert Securities tasked with finding out who would be so brazen to pull off such a dangerous heist at approximately 7:15 AM at the fabled Carlton Hotel. He arrives from London that same day as the one person the insurance company trusts to catch a thief and recover the jewels. He has some idea who might be bold enough to take such a high risk and that person hasn't struck in six years. With high stakes like these, Jerome is highly skilled. He thinks it is a person with the moniker dubbed, "The Leopard." He is notoriously known as the Leopard because he always leaves his calling card which is usually one Leopard glove which never reveals any fingerprints.

As Ania meets with Jerome Curtis he questions her over room service delivered to her hotel room as they are both hungry and Ania decides to save time by dismissing the hotel employee who brings their food to her room thinking it will be more expedient if she serves. They have coffee and Jerome ordered a Club sandwich and Anai ordered just a salad. After she lifts the silver serving tray she is unnerved for the first time as she lifts a necklace with her salad fork with a very personal handwritten message that she read's aloud.

"It's one thing for Liz and Sophia to find other adornments, but it would be a crime
if Audrey wore anything but a Thorne on her neck."

This short novella has great dialogue and it is obviously more plot driven. The chapters alternate between Jerome and Ania. This was an adventurous caper and I never had a clue who stole the jewelry other than to trust Jerome's experienced hunch that it must be the work of the Leopard. This isn't in any way a spoiler as Jerome Curtis discloses this up front in the very beginning. Is this jewelry thief in fact, the work of the Leopard? Who is the Leopard? Why is he targeting Ania Thorne? Is it because this person wants the International newspaper headlines?

One quick small thing of note. I noticed that a lot of reviewer's thought that this is based on the Alfred Hitchcock film called: "To Catch a Thief." I also am surprised that other reviewer's didn't love this as much as I did. It only costs $3.99 on Amazon in Kindle edition and is has been available for several month's now. If I had one quibble--and it is small; Is in that the chapter's delineated to either Anai or Jerome, that I would sometimes be caught off guard whose designated chapter I was reading even though they are named for each chapter in the beginning of each. This wasn't really that big of a problem because I would soon recover and it didn't matter all that much, since both are full of dialogue between them. It just was when one of them was thinking out loud, that it got a tiny bit confusing. Still, all in all, a PG rated, fun action packed short book for which I thoroughly enjoyed. It reads quickly and I hope that if you decide to read it, that you will love this as much as I did. I am crazy about C.W. Gortner's, previous work and have only read one book by M.J. Rose, whom I hope to read more of. I do Highly Recommend this!

Publication Date: August 10, 2021

Thank you to Net Galley, C.W. Gortner & M.J. Rose and Blue Box Press for generously providing me with my ARC in exchange for a fair and honest review. All opinions are my own.

#TheSteal #CWGortner #MJRose BlueBoxPress #NetGalley
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