Curse of the Specter Queen by Jenny Elder Moke (BOOK REVIEW) || Indiana Jones, who?

As it (probably) would surprise no one, I’m a huge fan of The Mummy and Indiana Jones movies. It’s action, it’s adventure, witty banter, mythology and history all stuffed in! This book certainly delivered on all fronts and I can’t wait to get to the next book in the series to see what’s going on there!

Disclaimer: I received this book from the blog tour company (Rockstar Book Tours) in order to prepare the second book (which I’m on the blog tour for). This is a free and honest review. The featred image is my own. The book’s synopsis is taken from Goodreads. Any opinions expressed are my own.


Title: Curse of the Specter Queen
Author: Jenny Elder Moke
Series: Samantha Knox #1 (#2)
Year Published: 2021
Number of Pages: 352
Publisher: Disney-Hyperion
Cover Art/Designer: Phil Buchanan (Design), Sammy Yuen (cover art)
Genre: Young Adult ~ Fantasy ~ Historical Fiction ~ Action and Adventure ~ Mythology

Links: Goodreads || The Storygraph
Format read in: Ebook (e-arc)
CW/TW: (Taken from The Storygraph) Death of parent, Murder, Fire/Fire injury, Violence, Kidnapping.


Samantha Knox put away her childish fantasies of archaeological adventure the day her father didn’t return home from the Great War, retreating to the safety of the antique bookshop where she works. But when a mysterious package arrives with a damaged diary inside, Sam’s peaceful life is obliterated. Ruthless men intent on reclaiming the diary are after Sam, setting her and her best friend, along with her childhood crush, on a high-stakes adventure that lands them in the green hills outside Dublin, Ireland. Here they discover an ancient order with a dark purpose – to perform an occult ritual that will raise the Specter Queen, the Celtic goddess of vengeance and death, to bring about a war unlike any the world has ever seen. To stop them, Sam must solve a deviously complex cipher – one that will lead her on a treasure hunt to discover the ancient relic at the heart of the ritual: a bowl carved from the tree of life. Will she find the bowl and stop the curse of the Specter Queen, or will the ancient order bring about the end of the world?

Indiana Jones gets a refresh with this female-driven mystery adventure, set in the 1920s, full of ciphers, ancient relics, and heart-stopping action – the first in a brand-new series!


This is a really fast paced and fun read so I really enjoyed it! Sam, Jo, and Bennett are three really super fun characters and I enjoyed reading their dynamics. Jo and Bennett definitely felt like siblings and you could definitely see that the author knew sibling dynamics and how to write them. That’s something that really makes me happy because, yes, I have a sister and so many times as kids we went from fighting (physically as well as arguing) to smiling at each other 😂.

Sam is an absolutely fantastic character and I really enjoyed reading about her passion, her love for archaeology, and all things knowledge. I also loved seeing her dynamic with the Steeling siblings. Her and Bennett having a crush on each other but neither of them wanting to say it? That’s how I like my childhood friends-to-lovers!

I loved Jo and Sam‘s friendship and it was also very interesting as I was the Sam and was best friends with a Jo back in my childhood. I absolutely understand Sam‘s place in the relationship and how she felt towards Jo. However I really liked how Jo stood her ground and I hope their relationship grows stronger in the next book.

The action in this book is really fast paced and I was glad for that because I don’t want slow books right now. As I said, the action and adventure in this is very much like The Mummy and Indiana Jones movies – which did well as I could easily see this all as a movie. I also felt that easy book-to-movie adaptation vibe and I liked that. Also Disney is the publisher for these books so they don’t even have to fight for the rights.

The storyline is really fun as it as it incorporated a lot of mythology and real history into each other and I love seeing that. I am a history and mythology lover so I really enjoyed seeing how well the author mixed it together.

All in all, I am absolutely happy for the next book and can’t wait to get to the next book – which I have! I’m going to pick it up immediately after I finish another book (🥲) but I really enjoyed this and I hope you’ll too! If you’re looking for an action and adventure book, this is it. Or maybe you want something about friendships and how difficult it is to maintain them when you’re vastly different personalities. Or how those close friends often change as you both grow up and away from each other. I really recommend this.

3 thoughts on “Curse of the Specter Queen by Jenny Elder Moke (BOOK REVIEW) || Indiana Jones, who?”

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s