This story is a perfect blend of romance, real history, and mystery...not to mention a dashing hero that I even fell for.
I didn't realize until a quarter thru the story that the murder of the British Prime Minister Perceval shot dead by a John Bellingham in front of the House of Commons really did happen. The entire mystery in this story revolves around a real incident.
That just made the story even more appealing for me than it already was.
We have the Duke of Wittaker..and I was quite charmed by him. To the public eye, he's a drunkard and womanizer, but it's really all an act, to cover what he's up to--undercover/spy work/the gathering of information. In reality, he's charming, sweet, and I found--and this is very unusual for me--that I didn't mind most of the story following him instead of the heroine. I'm normally all about heroines, especially Ms. Diener's.
This heroine, Phoebe, isn't as "tough" as Diener's other heroines, but neither is she a weakling. She not only places herself in the middle of an assassination investigation, but holds her head up in a society that considers her ruined and treats her as such. She also isn't afraid to break rules and say what she wants...and she wants the Duke of Wittaker. Can't blame her.
She shows a different kind of bravery than Diener's other heroines, and that's okay. Courage comes in many forms. The story doesn't focus on her as much though.
Anyway, Wittaker and Phoebe run around questioning people while dodging bullets and trying to handle their growing attraction for one another. Piece by piece we get to the bottom of who is behind the murder of the PM, who was really pulling the strings. My only quibble about this story is that I very nearly had to write everyone's name down and how they were connected to the case, as I began to forget who was who and who had done what. Just a lot of people involved.
But this is another winner from Diener. I highly recommend it, as I would her other books.
I received this via Netgalley.