The Prince of Spies by Elizabeth Camden – Book Review

Posted February 17, 2021 by Phyllis Helton in Book Reviews /

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The Prince of Spies by Elizabeth Camden – Book Review

The Prince of Spies

by Elizabeth Camden


Series: Hope and Glory #3
Series Rating:
Published by Bethany House Publishers
Publication Date February 16, 2021
Genres: Historical Fiction, Christian Fiction, Clean Romance
Setting: Washington D.C. Progressive Era – US – 1890s – 1920s
Main Character Ages: 25-34
Written for: Adults
Pages: 352

Synopsis:

Luke Delacroix has the reputation of a charming man-about-town in Gilded Age Washington, DC. In reality, he is secretly carrying out an ambitious agenda in Congress. His current mission is to thwart the reelection of Congressman Clyde Magruder, his only real enemy in the world.

But trouble begins when Luke meets Marianne Magruder, the congressman's only daughter, whose job as a government photographer gives her unprecedented access to sites throughout the city. Luke is captivated by Marianne's quick wit and alluring charm, leading them both into a dangerous gamble to reconcile their feelings for each other with Luke's driving passion for vital reforms in Congress.

Can their newfound love survive a political firestorm, or will three generations of family rivalry drive them apart forever?

I received a complimentary copy of this book. This gift did not influence my opinion or review.


Also in this series: The Spice King, A Gilded Lady

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From the suspenseful opening sentence to the triumphal ending, The Prince of Spies had me captivated. Romeo and Juliet and Don Quixote blend in Elizabeth Camden’s unique style in this wonderful conclusion to the Hope and Glory series. Each book infuses fascinating historical tidbits in the telling of the stories of the Delacroix siblings. If you have not yet read the others in the series, you will want to before continuing this review to avoid the spoilers.

I have been anxiously waiting to hear the rest of Luke’s story. Unlike his solemn older brother, Gray, Luke was full of passion and fire. He was a man who didn’t do things halfway. Serious about his causes, he did all he could to right the wrongs of the world. Mostly recovered from his stint in the Cuban prison, he embarked on a crusade to protect an unsuspecting public from the poisons injected into the foods they eat. Luke had a very sensitive side, as well, which caused him embarrassment when he would turn into a “water pot” at emotional moments.

Marianne was delightful! Courageous and determined. We are introduced to her when she staged a daring rescue that almost cost Luke and her their lives! I admired her dedication to her family despite their many faults and even more so, her desire to do what is good and right.

I loved The Poison Squad, as they had dubbed themselves! Their theatrics, teasing, and antics had me grinning. But they weren’t only about fun and games – they were dedicated to the food trials they underwent and also had each others’ backs. I was unaware that such a group of men existed in our country’s past.

The Prince of Spies is far from dry, dusty history. In addition to the romance, it is full of intrigue and light-hearted moments. Readers of historical fiction will want to be sure to read this fascinating series.

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About Elizabeth Camden

I am fortunate to have two careers I deeply love. I am a college librarian by day, and write novels on the weekends.

I become a librarian because I can think of no other career in which you get such a wide exposure to all aspects of recorded knowledge. I have been an academic librarian for fifteen years, where on any given day I get to research the sonnets of Shakespeare, learn what makes pelican feathers pink, or compile demographic statistics for starting a new company.

How does one become a college librarian? In my case, I got an undergraduate degree in History from Trinity University in San Antonio, then went on to earn a master’s degree in History from the University of Virginia, and finally a Master’s in Library Science from Indiana University.

But fiction has always been a wonderful escape for me, and I’ve wanted to be a novelist since the third grade when I was devastated by the bittersweet ending of Charlotte’s Web. I remember vowing to re-write the book with a better ending someday. Although I failed to appreciate how copyright law would thwart my ambition to write better endings for other people’s books, perhaps my early experience with sad novels is why I became a romance novelist.

I love writing books about fiercely intelligent people who are confronted with profound challenges. As a rather introverted person, I have found that writing fiction is the best way for me to share my faith and a sense of resilience with others. For those aspiring writers who are interested in my road to publication, you can find it here.

I married relatively late in life, which turned out to be an odd kind of blessing. I had gotten very good at leading a solo life, and although I was not particularly content being alone, I had become reconciled to it. Then when I was in my mid-thirties and just a few weeks after buying my first house, I met the man I was meant to spend the rest of my life with. My years as a single woman taught me many things. I learned to be independent and resilient. I learned how to manage my investments, earn and save enough money to have investments, mow my own lawn, fix the rickety appliances in my sixty-year old house, and spend the holidays on my own when travel to family was not possible. Most importantly, it taught me never to take my husband for granted. I give daily thanks for the blessing of being able to share a life with my favorite person on the planet.

As for who I really am? I love old Hitchcock films, the hour before sunset, a long, sweaty run through the Florida countryside, and a glass of good wine. After spending my entire adult life on a college campus (either as a student or a librarian) I have finally been able to pursue my ultimate goal of writing professionally.

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