The Adventuress by Tasha Alexander

The Adventuress by Tasha AlexanderThe Adventuress by Tasha Alexander

Series: #10 Lady Emily
Genres: Historical Romance, Romantic Suspense
on October 13, 2015
Pages: 301
Format: eARC
Source: NetGalley
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four-half-stars      two-flames

After that throwaway line in the last book about Emily’s best friend, Jeremy, the Duke of Bainbridge, confirmed bachelor, getting engaged, I was chomping at the bit to find out how that came about. The author didn’t keep me in suspense and even provided the lovely French Riviera as the backdrop. Because it’s an engagement party, what could possibly go wrong?

This is the tenth book in the Lady Emily series and I loved how the author brought things around to something that has been brewing since book two. Emily chose Colin Hargreaves and they have been happily married for some time, but there was always definitely something with her childhood friend, Jeremy. The reader could jump into the story and do alright if they are perceptive, but there will be a feeling that this story is attached to those before it. I advise getting them in order so some of the undercurrents, backgrounds, and personalities make sense.

Emily and Colin travel to Cannes for the engagement party of Em’s longtime friend, Jeremy, and the American heiress, Amity Wells. They are no sooner settled then one of Jeremy’s school chums, Neville Chambers, commits suicide and does it in Jeremy’s room in the wee hours with Jeremy’s whiskey with Jeremy nowhere in sight. Emily finds that she is the only one suspicious about things that don’t add up, but doesn’t want to further ruin the engagement party.

She already feels unsettled about Amity and something not quite being right about her as she tries so hard to be all things to all people even while showing a willful side of abandonment to society’s rules. Emily falls under the groups’ scrutiny as odd mishaps make her look like she is inflicting petty tortures on Amity. Emily searches her own motives not because she has done these things, but to know if her suspicions and uneasiness are from an interest in finding the truth for the right reasons. Things escalate and danger lurks.

I enjoyed this one that brought things back to the tone of some of the early books. The author creates a certain atmosphere of doubt and suspicion early on, but doesn’t give it substance for some time. Emily is uneasy and off balance and she is meant to be. Someone is pulling strings and contriving situations, but to what end? It was perfect.

And like the last few books in the series, the author adds a secondary storyline that tucks into the first one that dips into the past from other perspectives. The woman set up to be Emily’s rival, Amity Wells is the main narrator of this second story line. It was interesting and definitely gave a deeper layer and background to what is going on in the present.

Now, I have to admit that I figured out the ‘who’, ‘how’, and ‘why’ quite early. I’m pretty sure it was because it’s not that difficult, but that didn’t detract from my enjoyment or interest. I wanted to follow along and see Emily and her friends figure it out and I felt emotionally connected because this explored Em’s connection to Jeremy as she worked to come to terms with his marriage. Never fear, there is no love triangle here or cheating, but there is the need for the adjustment to something new with the addition of Amity in the mix. There is also the fact that someone wants to turn Em’s husband and friends against her. It was all so evil and calculated, if bloodless. I really wanted Em to hunt this one down and end the problem.

On a side note, I enjoyed the strong nod to Elizabeth Peter’s Amelia Peabody series another favorite historical romantic suspense series, when a secondary character with her own love interest meet up in Egypt and there is mention to her catching up with her relations excavating there in Egypt.

In summary, I found this riveting and I hesitated to put it down each time I was forced to and that hasn’t been the case for the last few in the series. I would recommend these for those who like the blend of Victorian Era history with suspense and a little romance.

I received this book in exchange for an honest review.

Romance Roundabout #348 RS

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Historical Romance #108

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I was born and raised near Sacramento, CA. I have read since I was four years old and developed tastes that run the gamut of literature. I went away to college and have a degree in education, a certificate in family history research, and a certificate in social work. I worked for a non-profit agency with low income families for 20 years which included being responsible for the children’s library and promoting/teaching adult literacy. I have lived in Southeast Michigan for the last 18 years and I am currently a book addicted homemaker with a cat and husband who keep me grounded. Recently, I made it a challenge to review each book that I have read as a favor to author friends who said reviews are important. I have done reviews for Good Reads, Amazon, eBay, and Smashwords, but mostly at Goodreads and Amazon.
  • At first when I started to read your reviewI dint think you were going to like this book as much as you said you would. BUT I’m super happy that you did enjoy this book so much and that it kept you on your toes! <3 For this to be Historical romance, I LOVE the cover (For some reason I usually don't care for HR covers, but.. *shrugs* It's just me I guess.) And you would think that the author would make it easier for someone who hasn't read the series before and explain things more but, idk. Epic review chica! <3

    • I confess that some of the historical covers don’t do it for me either. I have to go by blurbs mostly.
      I wasn’t sure I would like this one either since the suspense was more subtle and it all little things adding up, but I did.

      Thanks, Keionda! Your encouragement is always welcome.

  • Victorian era, romance and suspense, yes that sounds good

  • I love the setting and the suspense you mentioned. You are really enjoying this series, I should really try this author.

    • I am definitely enjoying the series. This one was more subtle since the murder is not suspected as murder for the longest time. I loved the southern France setting, too.

  • I really liked it, up until the end. It confused me a bit, i felt like it was thrown together in a panic of who killed him. and the reason… i didn’t see any hint at all as to that, grr can’t even say anything without ruining the ending lol

    • I will give you that. I had to re-read parts at the end to make sure I got what was going down. LOL! It’s so hard not to rush into words to talk about a book. I was surprised by that ending and I knew who the culprit was. 😉

  • Even when I read romance, historical was never my thing. It was great that you could learn from them, but I preferred contemporary.

    Stephanie
    http://stephie5741.blogspot.com

    • I was the opposite for years, Stephanie. I wouldn’t touch contemporary. But I’ve slowly been working it into my reading and starting to like it though yeah, historical is still my first love. 😉

  • While this is not my genre, I enjoyed your review. Glad to hear you liked it.

    • That’s great! I know I’m doing alright if you can like the review even if the book isn’t your thing. Thanks, Mary!

  • “I loved how the author brought things around to something that has been brewing since book two”

    Oh, I love when the author does that and ties the series together. That’s why I hesitate to read books out of order, I’m afraid I’ll miss something. So yeah, I’ll be sure to start from the beginning.

    • I feel the same way and yet so many times I grab a book out of order. Sometimes I don’t know its part of a series, but sometimes I’m just impatient and pay the price. Most series that are supposedly a group of standalone stories really are not b/c they do have an assumption that the reader read the books in order even if the stories finish up the romance or mystery in the one book.
      Hope you like them if you try them, Christy!

  • oh this sounds very interesting, I love a good mystery to a historical.

    • Me, too, Renee! It took me the longest time to be able to read just a romance without a mystery or something else to it.

  • I like those long lastign storylines in long running series, it’s fun this one involved events that were brewing since book 2. The suspense and historical aspects sound interesting. That atmosphere of doubt and suspicion can really add to the suspense. And that’s great you still enjoyed the book even though the why and how were obvious early on, sometimes seeing it all play out is the best part even though you know were the plot is going. Great review Sophia!

    • Thanks, Lola! Truthfully, I’d actually forgotten about some of the stuff in book two until I read this one and realized there were some dangling plot threads needed to be addressed. And yes, that atmosphere of doubt and suspicion was really a good addition to the mystery. In most of these, there’s action suspense stuff or detecting, but not the subtle things like what happened here. I enjoyed it.

  • that’s interesting, don’t think I’ve come across a historical romantic suspense. It looks like it all tied in well especially the suspense part. All the game playing and trying to set her up…interesting indeed. Love the review Sophia 🙂

    • Yes, the historical element with the romantic suspense is one of my favorite blends. I’ve got a few go-to series and this is one. I enjoyed how the author did all that mind games stuff on the heroine so it wasn’t just a simple murder mystery.