Published by Lyrical Press on January 2nd 2018
Purchase: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo
In this new Regency charmer from the beloved, award-winning author Kate Moore, the clues to solving one of life’s greatest mysteries may be found in a slim blue volume of advice for husband-seeking debutantes. But two people engaged in a clever game of cat and mouse just might rewrite the book...
The daughter of a British intelligence agent, Jane Fawkener has spent most of her life in exotic lands abroad, not flirting her way to matrimony among the ton. So when her father disappears and is presumed dead, she’s perplexed as to why he’s arranged for her to receive a copy of The Husband Hunter’s Guide to London. Convinced he has hidden a covert message for her within its pages, Jane embarks on a “husband hunt” with an altogether different aim. But can she fool the government escort who’s following her every move—a dangerously seductive man for whom rules are clearly meant to be broken.
~~Reviewed by Monique~~
After having spent nearly ten years in the Middle East, Miss. Jane Fawkener has to go back to London after her father is declared dead. Jane has never known for a fact but has an inkling that George Fawkener was working for the Foreign Office, and that he isn’t dead. She must see the bankers, who show her a letter that was sent to a cousin a year before, and she is given a book: THE HUSBAND HUNTER’S GUIDE TO LONDON. Is her father reaching from his supposed grave to tell Jane she must get married? She thinks that it must be some sort of code. Edmund Dalby, Viscount Hazelwood, is an agent of the Foreign Office, and his mission is seemingly to guide Jane when she accepts a posthumous knighthood for her father, but he must, in fact, make sure that the Russians don’t get a hold of her or the information she might possess. Jane needs either to endure Hazelwood or find a husband; pretending to look for a husband will allow her to enquire into her father’s disappearance; Hazelwood need not be in the way.
Kate Moore’s very relaxed style of writing captured my attention from the start; THE HUSBAND HUNTER’S GUIDE TO LONDON is so easy to read, you just slip into the story and glide along! Jane is not used to English dress and customs, and I loved how the author exploited this angle to full advantage. Jane is also very perceptive, calm and methodical, she will not bend to Hazelwood’s every whim, however, she is not your typical stubborn female who gets into trouble; she is almost as good an agent as he is. Neither is Hazelwood your cookie-cutter spy/rogue, and I particularly enjoyed how realistic the spying world was in THE HUSBAND HUNTER’S GUIDE TO LONDON. The pace is steady, while not quick, and I had the impression of an authentic club of covert agents. There are few flashy episodes, but there is a lot of drama and action; I thought it was perfectly done.
The characters are so captivating that, even when Jane and Hazelwood are not in the picture, I was completely engrossed because you know that every little detail matters and Kate Moore’s vivid descriptions of the scenery, the shops, the whole environment was superb. Ms. Moore also writes very elegantly and her style is so well adapted to the era, that if I would have been told that the excerpts of THE HUSBAND HUNTER’S GUIDE TO LONDON – the fictional guide, that is – which open every chapter, were actually written during the Regency, that I would not have batted an eyelash. The romance is lovely, very quaint, and I loved it! What more can I say!
I voluntarily reviewed an advanced reader copy of this book.