Monday, May 23, 2016

Review: Love, Lies, and Spies by Cindy Anstey

Juliana Telford is not your average nineteenth-century young lady. She’s much more interested in researching ladybugs than marriage, fashionable dresses, or dances. So when her father sends her to London for a season, she’s determined not to form any attachments. Instead, she plans to secretly publish their research.

Spencer Northam is not the average young gentleman of leisure he appears. He is actually a spy for the War Office, and is more focused on acing his first mission than meeting eligible ladies. Fortunately, Juliana feels the same, and they agree to pretend to fall for each other. Spencer can finally focus, until he is tasked with observing Juliana’s traveling companions . . . and Juliana herself.

Rating: 3 Stars

I received a free copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

I've been reading more historical novels of late, trying to complete the classics: Austen, the Brontes, etc. Every once in awhile, though, I need a break from the somewhat heavier historical novels (Gabaldon and her Outlander books comes to mind) and I've found that Love, Lies, and Spies is a good book when one wants to continue with a historical book that isn't emotionally heavy.

LL&S was a bit difficult to get into at first. It rather felt like I'd started reading the book a couple chapters in instead of at the beginning. I persevered, though, and soon found it to be more enjoyable which is lucky. I was worried for a moment there that it would stay like that the entire book!

The romantic aspect of the book was interesting. There were several times it reminded me of ballroom scenes in Austen novels when one character would be talking or thinking about their love interest before realizing that maybe, just maybe that person reciprocates the feelings. It was a bit thick in parts, like a heavy perfume, where the love feelings falling into place happened rather quickly and just a bit too neatly, even for a "spy novel".

All in all, I think that this was a light read; a good one, but not a great one. I'm curious to see what further works by this author might be like.

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