Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Title: Duels and Deception
Author: Cindy Anstey
Series: n/a
Publisher: Swoon Reads
Publication Date: April 11, 2017
Source: ARC received from publisher
Purchase: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

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Miss Lydia Whitfield, heiress to the family fortune, has her future entirely planned out. She will run the family estate until she marries the man of her late father's choosing, and then she will spend the rest of her days as a devoted wife. Confident in those arrangements, Lydia has tasked her young law clerk, Mr. Robert Newton, to begin drawing up the marriage contracts. Everything is going according to plan.

Until Lydia—and Robert along with her—is kidnapped. Someone is after her fortune and won't hesitate to destroy her reputation to get it. With Robert's help, Lydia strives to keep her family's good name intact and expose whoever is behind the devious plot. But as their investigation delves deeper and their affections for each other grow, Lydia starts to wonder whether her carefully planned future is in fact what she truly wants…

Well, this book was utterly charming. I read a lot of adult historical fiction novels, and I usually love when the characters flout societal norms for a risqué tête-à-tête...or two. But in this case, I was happy to see the young gentleman acting so gallantly and in defense of the main character's reputation.

It's difficult to imagine how hard it was in those days to maintain one's integrity and always act accordingly, especially compared with society today. But even so, Miss Lydia Whitfield stands apart as a headstrong and capable woman of means. She always endeavors to maintain a modicum of decorum, but she also has a knack for making things happen in just the manner she planned. Until someone takes matters into their own hands and makes things happen to Lydia.

I greatly enjoyed the element of mystery to this story, though I did figure out the gist of it pretty early on in the story. And I loved that Mr. Robert Newton made it his mission to discover the truth behind the abduction, going above and beyond his duties as Lydia's solicitor. They were so utterly guileless in their affection for each other and it was completely endearing but also totally frustrating at times because I just wanted so badly for them to kiss already. =)

On a side note, I initially thought this book was a sequel of sorts to Love, Lies and Spies, but it is a completely separate story. Both books can be read on their own in whatever order you choose. But you should definitely read both if you're a fan of wholesome, clean fun by way of historical fiction. Duels and Deception was adorable, quirky, and just plain delightful, and I can't wait to read more from Cindy Anstey.


GIF it to me straight:

About the author:

Cindy Anstey spends her days painting with words, flowers, threads and acrylics. Whenever not sitting at the computer, she can be found—or rather, not found—traveling near and far. After many years living as an expat in Singapore, Memphis and Belgium, Cindy now resides with her husband and energetic chocolate labrador in Nova Scotia, Canada.

Find Cindy:

WebsiteGoodreads | Twitter | Facebook


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