Culper Ring Series #2
By Roseanna White
Harvest House, August 1, 2013
Reviewed by Marian Baay
I LOVED THIS BOOK!!
Do I have your attention now? Yes? Good!
Roseanna White takes the reader back to 1814, to the war of 1812, where we meet again with the main characters from the first book in this series Ring of Secrets—Winter and Bennet Lane. Their son Thaddeus Lane is our hero and he also is Mr. Culper now.
Our heroine is the daughter of the British General Fairchild—we met him in the first book as Colonel Fairchild. Gwyneth Fairchild is being sent away by her father to America. He believes their lives are in danger and he wants Gwyn to leave immediately. He sends her to his American friends—the Lanes. Just before she enters the carriage to leave, her British suitor – Sir Arthur Hart – asks for her hand in marriage. Excitedly Gwyn runs back to the house to talk to her father. But instead of talking to him she is a witness to his murder. Panicked, she runs back to the waiting carriage and leaves England and Sir Arthur behind.
After a long and horrendous sea journey, Gwyn finally arrives in America. She has been sick and has had terrible nightmares. She did not tell anyone that she saw her father being murdered. Fear that the killer might follow her to America has kept her awake and made her sick. Her servants thought she was seasick, but she cannot tell anyone what is really plaguing her.
When she finally meets Thad – the only person she knows she can trust because her father trusted him – she falls asleep in his arms.
Captain Thaddeus Lane – or Thad – has received a letter from General Fairchild, but the content doesn’t make any sense. He assumes there must be a hidden message in it, but he can’t figure it out. Not even his parents can break the code—if there is one.
When Gwyn arrives at his doorstep, he doesn’t know what to do with her. Can he trust her? She is British after all…and America is at war with England.
Back in England Sir Arthur and Gwyn’s uncle are looking for Gwyn, but they don’t know where she went. When Arthur finds a letter from the Lanes in General Fairchild’s study, her uncle believes that is where the general has sent her. Together they follow Gwyn to America—Arthur in hopes to claim her as his bride and Uncle with another purpose.
Gwyn’s trust for Thad – because her father trusted him – runs deep. She will have to learn to put her trust in Someone else to find peace and healing from the monsters in her nightmares.
Thad is a widower, but doesn’t talk much about his deceased wife. For some reason it is a sensitive subject. While he starts to care more and more for Gwyn – and his feelings are returned – he neglects to tell her why it is such a sensitive topic. When his best friend, Alain, spills it all out during a fight, Gwyn is shocked to learn what happened and runs away to hide in her bedroom. Before he has a chance to talk to Gwyn, Thad is called away on a dangerous sea journey to spy on the British fleet approaching America.
Can an American Captain and the daughter of a British General find love?
Will Gwyn understand that he had to leave before they could talk it all out? Will she forgive him?
And what about Sir Arthur? Will he find Gwyn to claim her for his own?
Will her father’s killer find Gwyn?
And General Fairchild’s letter…will they ever break the code and learn what secret message is hidden inside it?
There’s a lot of suspense and intrigue in this fabulous book. Murder, spies, secrets, war, love, grief, forgiveness, faith... There’s so much to enjoy in this story. The characters and plot were very well developed and the writing is clear and exciting. I’m already looking forward to the next book in this series. Fantastic job, Roseanna!
*Thanks to the publisher for providing me with a review copy through NetGalley.*
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