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!Read E-pub Ó The Ancient Nine å Spencer Collins Thinks His Life At Harvard Will Be All About Basketball And Pre Med Hard Workouts And Grinding Work In Class The Friends He S Made When He Hits The Storied Ivy Clad Campus From A Very Different Life In Urban Chicago Are A Happy Bonus But Spencer Is About To Be Introduced To The Most Mysterious Inner Sanctum Of The Inner Sanctum To His Surprise, He S In The Running To Be Punched For One Of Harvard S Elite Final ClubsThe Delphic Club Is Known As The Gas For Its Crest Of Three Gas Lit Flames, And As Spencer Is Considered For Membership, He S Plunged Not Only Into The Secret World Of Male Privilege That The Gas Represents, But Also Into A Century Old Club Mystery Because At The Heart Of The Delphic, Secured Deep Inside Its Guarded Mansion Club, Is Another Secret Society A Shadowy Group Of Powerful Men Known As The Ancient Nine Who Are The Ancient Nine And Why Is Spencer Along With His Best Friend Dalton Winthrop Summoned To The Deathbed Of Dalton S Uncle Just As Spencer Is Being Punched For The Club What Does The Lore About A Missing Page From One Of Harvard S Most Historic Books Mean And How Does It Connect To Religion, Murder, And To The King James Bible, If Not To King James Himself The Ancient Nine Is Both A Coming Of Age Novel And A Swiftly Plotted Story That Lets Readers Into The Ultimate Of Closed Worlds With All Of Its Dark Historical Secrets And Unyielding Power This is like a Dan Brown novel meets the Skulls, meets romance, meets bromance, meets thriller There s a LOT going on with this book Spencer gets punched to become one of Harvard s elite clubs where women can t join, but they sure can serve you and be your entertainment There are several elite clubs that you could be vying for, but The Delphic Club and the powerful men of The Ancient Nine well that s where you really want to be Once punched, Spencer decides to go on a journey to figure out the depths behind these men and the full story of a murder that happened decades ago bringing in history, religion and the pursuit of justice PHEW Here s what I enjoyed about this book I love anything related to secret societies and the journey to getting into one Although sororities and fraternities these days have all but squashed their hazing days ahem , secret societies have either run their course or have become so secret that they re not very widely know hence the word secret ya get me I enjoyed Spencer s tenacity in wanted to get the details of the behind the scenes of what he may very well be getting into Don t you do YOUR research before getting into something that will be a big part of your life Lots of research, lore, backstories and travels become involved with Spencer and his trusty side kick, Dalton I also did enjoy the little romance between Spencer and Ashley that added a bit of levity to the whole story.Here s what didn t quite work for me Ashley s continued banter with Spencer about how she won t date stuck up, preppie Harvard boys ok, we get it we don t need this explained or brought back up in EVERY interaction At times, the book could get over detailed I ve always had issues with this I m just going to get bored if the author is describing, in length, where everything is placed or within the vicinity of something else And also, I m not the biggest fan of history so I did feel like there were moments where I was being given a history lesson and that didn t quite press my interest button That s not the author s fault that s just my own preference.What I found most interesting is that I had to keep reminding myself that Spencer and Dalton are in COLLEGE, they re young men trying to live their best life and somehow the feel I received from the way the story was written was that they were much older and the time period felt in the older days and not the 1980s.Definitely a great read for those who love the thrill of the chase and secret societies.Thank you to St Martin s Press for this copy and stop on the Blog Tour. A twisty mysterious ride through the depths of the Harvard libraries and to the best local spots in Cambridge I absolutely had a blast reading The Ancient Nine If you re a fan of mysteries and secret societies, like the Da Vinci Code and the Skulls, you will not want to miss picking this book up This read flew by for me I was completely engrossed in the story, and it had a good mix of history and details about the campus Harvard and town Cambridge to make it feel completely authentic It even had a little romance You will be completely hooked by chapter two About the BookIn the fall of 1988 Spenser Collins is a sopho at Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts Spenser is an unlikely prospect for Harvard a black male from the south side of Chicago raised by a single mother, and he s one heck of a basketball player.Spenser is best friends with Dalton Winthrop, a legacy at Harvard coming from a long lineage of Winthrops to grace those hallowed grounds Dalton has the looks, the money, and the name to show his belonging at Harvard.When Spenser is punched to join one of Harvard s most exclusive clubs, the Delphic Club, both Spenser and Dalton are stunned Sure, Spenser is smart, athletic, and a good person, but he s also black, poor, and doesn t have the pedigree that a club like the Delphic would usually look for.As Spenser begins his journey with the Delphic, Dalton tells him of another secret a club within the club called the Ancient Nine No one outside of the Ancient Nine are sure of its existence, but Dalton may know than most His great uncle was in the Delphic Club, and something Dalton has seen at his house makes him sure he is one of the Ancient Nine.Desperate to know what the Ancient Nine was formed to protect the club s greatest secrets Dalton and Spenser seek answers Combing through the rarest books at Harvard, centuries old newspapers in the library archives, and clandestine meetings with former members, Spenser and Dalton begin to discover that the secrets of the Delphic may be darker than they ever imagined Now, they must discover the truth before they become the Delphic s next secret ReflectionMost people can guess by the name of my blog It s PhDiva.blog that I m a life long student and learner So much of my identity is wrapped up in being a student and a member of academic tradition A book like The Ancient Nine was an absolute delight for me to read I have found myself on some seemingly doomed hunts through microfilm archives and crumbling books to find that needle in a haystack article though the articles I seek rarely refer to a mysterious death Smith s writing is so detailed that it was easy to picture all of the settings in this novel I felt like I took a trip to Harvard myself I loved the amount of historical information about the campus and the town that was sprinkled throughout It made me feel like a part of the story, envisioning those late night greasy diners with the best cheesesteak in Cambridge, or the underground tunnel with study rooms where Dalton and Spenser meet to speak in private about their quest.And then there is a bit of romance Enter Ashley, a girl working at the University to get herself through community college Spenser is instantly smitten, but Ashley keeps him at arms length He s a Harvard boy, and she can t imagine he d ever fall for a girl from the wrong side of town I won t spoil it, but let s just say that Ashley may be underestimating our friend, Spenser I think Spenser may surprise her with his persistence and authenticity I loved these moments with Ashley and at basketball practice when we see Spenser being a regular college student They grounded the story in a way that was needed for it to feel believable.I hope that you get a chance to read this one if it strikes your interest Expect a LOT of great libraries, some pretty ancient books, and a fun mystery Cambridge, Massachusetts, Fall 1988Spenser Collins is a sopho at Harvard University when he is punched to join the Delphic Club, an exclusive all male final club that can boast some of world s most successful businessmen, politicians, Hollywood legends and Wall Street titans to name a few Spenser, a basketball player at Harvard, is from Chicago and is the son of a single Mother He does not quite fit Delphic Club s membership criteria and yet they are interested in him Spenser s friend, Dalton Winthrop, has lived a life of luxury and knows a lot about the exclusive clubs at Harvard He encourages Spenser to attend the social Dalton s great uncle is the Delphic s oldest living member During their talks, Dalton mentions the Ancient Nine the infamous secret club within the club The Ancient Nine is shrouded in mystery and Dalton shares several theories and Harvard Legends about how and why the club within the club exists Dalton encourages Spenser to check out the club and find out any information he can find about the Ancient Nine When Spenser meets an interesting man at the first social, Dalton and Spenser have their interest piqued even than it already was, and they decide to do whatever they can to find out about the club and the top secret exclusive Ancient Nine Fueled by a meeting with Dalton s great uncle and the request to retrieve a secret book, the two young men must be clever, smart, and cunning to learn the truth.Through the course of this novel, the reader learns about the Ancient Nine but also about Harvard, Harvard s history and secret societies in general Spenser and Dalton discover there had been a missing person murder in the 1920 s and as they research, the reader is also shown the library and research system at Harvard.This book has a little bit of everything secret societies, mystery, suspense, romance, and has a cat and mouse feel There is also the objectification of women which may be uncomfortable to some, but I feel is indicative of the time the book is set in and the fact that the book is about frat secret societies There are stories within stories and those who want to keep the secrets of the club just that secrets Plus, there is the component about religion, the mention of King James and the King James Bible How is all this related You ll have to read this to find out There is a lot going on in this book almost too much at times for me Harvard, Secret Societies, Murder, Mayhem, Research and Mystery rolled into one.Thank you to St Martin s Press and NetGalley who provided me with a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review All the thoughts and opinions are my own.Read of my reviews at www.openbookpost.com An unlikely student is punched nominated for membership into the Delphic club, one of the nine most exclusive clubs at Harvard Things unravel from there as Spenser and another student in 1988 become obsessed with discovering the dark secrets of the Ancient Nine, a clandestine group within the Gas There is a murder but it happens during the 1920 s so this is of a puzzle requiring academic research and digging some of it physical rather than a traditional murder mystery Be prepared for the objectification of women which I took with a grain of salt given the time period and that most of the characters are basically testosterone driven frat boys and sons of the 1% After all, women have only recently found their voice within the metoo movement There s also some nifty Harvard history, legend and lore along the way Read this if you re in the mood for a campus novel that pulls back the curtain on some very snarled ivy.