Sunday, June 21, 2015

Once Upon a Scandal by Julie LeMense

Title:  Once Upon a Scandal
Author:  Julie LeMense
Publication Date:  June 22/15 by Crimson Romance
Length:  279pgs
Genre:  historical romance
Shelf:  review
Rating: ★★★★

Back Cover Blurb:

Lady Jane Fitzsimmons won our hearts in Once Upon a Wager … and now her story is full of even more delightful twists and turns!

Caught up in a scandal of her father’s making, Jane is now an outcast in the society that once prized her refinement. When Lord Benjamin Marworth offers to help redeem her good name, she leaps at the chance.

Too bad his plan requires her very public demise.

To the ton, Benjamin is a dandy and a rake, but that’s merely a convenient disguise to spy for the Crown. Can he save both England and Jane by faking her death and reincarnating her as a French cousin who can ferret out the stolen war secrets he needs? Or will she discover Benjamin’s own dark secrets in the end?

It’s a proposition steeped in scandal if they’re caught — but love just might be worth the risk.

My Review:

Intrigue abounds in this novel that combines politics, spy craft, and budding romance. Society’s beliefs & the propriety of the ton at the time really shine through. LeMense’s eloquent writing heightens this, while also allowing her characters’ personalities to shine through. This novel was pricelessly comical and endlessly enjoyable. LeMense also created a case of whodunit that kept me guessing. The true culprit doesn’t become apparent until the very last moment.

I found that the story was a bit slow at the beginning as LeMense built her characters. That said, I wasn’t ever bored, and the characters are fantastically well developed. We get to know them inside and out. I found the main characters to be so endearing. I truly enjoyed getting to know them, and liked them as individuals, even when they didn’t like themselves. The various tidbits from Fordyce’s at the beginning of every chapter made me smile throughout. I loved the differences between the ‘you should’ that they present and the real events of the story. They really made our heroine’s character shine.

LeMense’s polished style is very catching in this novel of romance & intrigue. It was a great way to spend a few afternoons and I am very glad to have read it.

1 comment:

  1. So glad you liked it, Jonel, and I really appreciate the honest review!