Sunday, August 4, 2019

Book Review: The Orchid Affair

Title - The Orchid Affair 
Author - Lauren Willig 
Series - Pink Carnation #8 
Genre - Historical Romance 
Format - Kindle 
Pages - 405
Published - January 20th 2011
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Laura Grey, a veteran governess, joins the Selwick Spy School expecting to find elaborate disguises and thrilling exploits in service to the spy known as the Pink Carnation. She hardly expects her first assignment to be serving as governess for the children of Andre Jaouen, right-hand man to Bonaparte's minister of police. Jaouen and his arch rival, Gaston Delaroche, are investigating a suspected Royalist plot to unseat Bonaparte, and Laura's mission is to report any suspicious findings. 

At first the job is as lively as Latin textbooks and knitting, but Laura begins to notice strange behavior from Jaouen-secret meetings and odd comings and goings. As Laura edges herself closer to her employer, she makes a shocking discovery and is surprised to learn that she has far more in common with Jaouen than she originally thought... 

As their plots begin to unravel, Laura and Jaouen are forced on the run with the children, and with the help of the Pink Carnation they escape to the countryside, traveling as husband and wife. But Delaroche will stop at nothing to take down his nemesis. With his men hot on their trail, can Laura and Jaouen seal the fate of Europe before it's too late? 

Opening line
Paris 1804

"Around the back," said the gatekeeper. 

Laura Grey has joined the Selwick Spy School her first mission is to go undercover as a governess which she's had lots of experience as. She's on a mission to report anything suspicious about the plan to unseat Bonaparte. It's clear after arriving that she needs to purchase some books to teach the children as they are lacking. Bundling up the kids they set out on an adventure in Paris encountering several characters. 

It isn't long that Laura starts to piece together the things going on with Jaouen and his work. However, things spiral out of control when a blast from her past comes into play and her secret identity is almost revealed. As if that wasn't enough now someone she cares about is about to be wrongfully accused and they jump into action. Saving the day with an elaborate plan that will risk them all. 

I'm not a huge historical fiction fan but I instantly was drawn into Laura's story it's captivating right from the start. I admit the book was read out of order but each book seems to tell a different story and I don't think that caused any issues reading out of order. I found the concept super interesting a creative spin on the Neopolianic war times. 

I really liked Laura as a character she was easy to connect with right from the start, and I was drawn into her story. I wasn't sure about Jaouen but the more we got to know him the more I liked him as a potential love interest for Laura. Who says you can't fall in love with the man you are sent to watch and end up saving. This is my first book by the author and I'm a huge fan. I look forward to going back and reading from the start. 

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