Title: A Necessary Deception (The Daughters of Bainbridge House #1)
Author: Laurie Alice Eakes
In this first book of her new series, Laurie Alice Eakes sets the story in England in the spring of 1812 when France is at war with England, and the United States is threatening war with England as well. This is also known as the Regency period, and the story is set among the aristocratic class.
Lady Lydia Gale is a widow, living a rather poor life in comparison to her upbringing on her husband’s pension as he died while in service to his country fighting the French. She only enjoyed one week of marriage before her husband set off to rejoin his unit, and Lydia never saw him again. She received one final message from her husband before his death and now the time has come to fulfill the obligation set forth in his message. After meeting this obligation, she thinks she is done with her duty and heads off to London to help plan one sister’s wedding and another sister’s coming out season. Her mother is often ill and leaves this task to Lydia as she is the oldest. Lydia also is still trying to measure up to her father’s expectations in anything she does as she feels she has always failed him in everything she has tried to do. She failed at being a wife, a mother, and a daughter in her eyes. She believes God no longer hears her prayers and has given up on praying. Now she is being blackmailed by an unknown government official to introduce two operatives into society or else her family will be ruined once it is found out the task Lydia was obliged to perform per her husband’s last edict.
Christien de Meuse is French, but moved to England with his family at the age of 10 to escape the revolutionaries. He is also looking to Lady Gale for an entrée into society. He and Lydia’s husband served together as soldiers. Lydia’s husband shared her letters and pictures with Christien, so he feels as if he knows her before he actually meets her. He is immediately smitten, but keeps his feelings to himself. He must complete his last mission, and then settle down in the country and see his sisters married off. Lady Gale on the contrary is very distrustful of him as she has just had the same request made of her by someone else. This can’t be a coincidence. Who is telling the truth? Christien has had to compromise his personal beliefs and integrity for his job. Can he successfully complete this last mission or will he return to the Christian man he was before the service?
This novel is classified as historical romance, but there is much more. There is a tension, intrigue and suspense with each page as the reader tries to figure out who is really who they say they are and who is lying. Also, there is humor, camaraderie and bolstering of shaky faith of some. I thoroughly enjoyed this story and have already started on the second book in the series, which I will review here shortly. This is a great adventure with great dialogue to keep readers interested and quickly flipping pages until the very last page.
My rating is 5 stars.
Note: I received a complimentary copy for an honest review of this book. The opinions shared in this review are solely my responsibility. Other reviews can be read at http://seekingwithallyurheart.blogspot.com/ . Also follow me on Twitter @lcjohnson1988, FaceBook at https://www.facebook.com/lisa.johnson.75457