Saturday, May 3, 2014

Circle of Spies Book #3

Title:  Circle of Spies (Culper Ring #3)
Author:  Roseanna M. White
Pages:  357
Year:  2014
Publisher:  Harvest House Publishers
The books in this series keep getting better and better!  This third installment in the Culper Ring Series is my favorite one.  This story is set in 1865 near the end of the Civil War in Baltimore, Maryland.  The Lane and Arnaud families are still involved in the spy game and have brought their children into the game too.
Slade Osborne is a Pinkerton agent sent to the Confederate sympathizing group known as the Knights of the Golden Circle.  This group is bent on raising havoc against the North and keeping the South’s way of life alive and well despite what President Lincoln has decreed as law.  The head of one of the subgroups is Slade’s target.  Slade is a Unionist, but is working undercover to infiltrate the KGC.  They are planning something big, but Slade must discover what it is and stop it before it is too late.  The man in charge of this group is courting Marietta Hughes, a woman who attracts a lot of male attention, including Slade’s.  At first he isn’t sure which side of the war she is on.  She has an understanding with Devereaux Hughes, who owns slaves, but her family is staunchly Unionist.  Is she more than the flirt and manipulator she shows to society?  Is there more to this woman underneath the surface?  What exactly is the KGC up to?
Marietta Hughes is a young widow who has previously only concerned herself with…herself.  However, she begins to question if Devereaux really loves her or is just using her.  She has a photographic memory and puts it to good use spying.  As Slade begins searching for evidence of what the KGC is up to, he and Marietta spend more and more time together.  Their romance blooms in secret, but neither thinks they are worthy of the other and that their probably is no together forever in their future.  Marietta realizes what a shrew she has been and embraces the faith she has been taught by her parents.  Is it too little too late?  Can she right the wrongs in her life?
I thought watching Marietta struggle with the shame of her past was very realistically portrayed.  She has seeks forgiveness from God and believes He has forgiven her, but hasn’t been able to grasp the freedom that goes with the forgiveness until she listens to the wise counsel of her friend.  Once she understands, she blazes with her faith, compassion and mercy.  Slade spent his young adulthood gambling, drinking and rebelling against his preacher father.  However, he came to realize the value of his father’s teaching, how he was wasting his life and turned his life around to become a strong man of God.  I liked both main characters for their wit and intelligence as well as their faith.  This story just flew by as I quickly kept the pages turning to discover what was going to happen next.  I thoroughly enjoyed all three novels in this series and am looking forward to what this author puts forth next.
My rating is 5 stars.
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