Published by HQN Books on November 20, 2018
Purchase: Amazon, Barnes & Noble
Set sail for love in this sparkling new adventure in #1 New York Times bestselling author Victoria Alexander’s Lady Travelers Society series.
Harry Armstrong has spent years in Egypt, recovering relics and disregarding rules. Now he’s back in England with a new title and a new purpose: penning his exploits. But his efforts are overshadowed by London’s favorite writer about Egypt—a woman they call The Queen of the Desert, of all things. Worse, her stories—serialized in newspapers and reprinted in books—are complete rubbish.
Miss Sidney Honeywell didn’t set out to deceive anyone. It’s not her fault readers assumed her Tales of a Lady Adventurer in Egypt were real! Admitting her inadvertent deception now would destroy her reputation and her livelihood. But when the Earl of Brenton challenges her to travel to Egypt to prove her expertise, accompanied by his dashing, arrogant nephew, what choice does she have but to pack her bags?
With the matchmaking founders of the Lady Travelers Society in tow, Harry is determined to expose Sidney’s secret. But the truth might not be as great a revelation as discovering that love can strike even the most stubborn of hearts.
~~Reviewed by Monique~~
Have you ever read a book that you cannot wait to tell everyone about how amazing it is? THE LADY TRAVELERS GUIDE TO DECEPTION WITH AN UNLIKELY EARL is one of those. Miss Sidney Honeywell is the authoress of the Tales of a Lady Adventurer in Egypt under the name of Mrs. Gordon. Everyone raves about her articles and her book, but Sidney is not a widow and has never set foot in Egypt. “Mrs. Gordon” and the Earl of Brenton have been publicly feuding in the newspaper which publishes Sidney’s articles, but things take a turn for the worst when the Earl dares her to travel to Egypt along with his nephew, Harry Armstrong, and a journalist to show her throng of admirers everything she knows.
THE LADY TRAVELERS GUIDE TO DECEPTION WITH AN UNLIKELY EARL (what a mouthful!) had me smiling at page one, I was completely under Victoria Alexander’s spell, and it only got better from there. And I’m not sure if I have ever said that, but it could have been 200 pages longer, and I would not have complained. Not one word is wasted, it’s fast-paced all the way through, the prose is impeccable and always respectful of Victorian usage. The dialogues are probably the best I have read this year, brilliantly written, and so dazzlingly witty that I laughed out loud many times. Harry, Sidney, and the journalist are accompanied by the Lady Travelers – Gwen, Poppy, and Sidney’s Aunt Effie – who are so spectacularly entertaining, that I wish they were in my own life in some way. Ms Alexander’s characters live and breathe, every detail is essential and she creates a vibrant and realistic background and weaves a story so captivating that my mind never wandered for one second. Although this is book three in the series, I found it astonishing that I never felt there were things I was missing, but I will certainly make sure to read the previous instalment in this series because it is absolutely smashing!
Sidney is definitely one of my favourite female characters ever in too many ways to enumerate; I also loved that she is older, she is thirty-two, and Harry is thirty-eight, and they acted like people their age. Ms. Alexander’s understanding and knowledge of the Victorian era and its people is astounding, and I loved how she made Sidney – and the Lady Travelers – independent women because they knew how to manoeuvre in order to improve their life. The story is captivating, there are unique and very ingenious twists and turns, prickly situations are dealt with the utmost intelligence by the characters; I love an author who respects her reader’s intellect. This is such a happy, wonderful book where I got to experience vicariously the wonders of Egypt through Sidney’s eyes by way of the author’s vibrant and loving descriptions. The romance is utterly exquisite, as Sidney and Harry approach each other with extreme caution at first, but they like each other in spite of the circumstances, and how perfectly lovely it is to watch their love grow; both are such extraordinarily well-crafted characters, engaging and charming, and their few moments of intimacy are sensual, joyous, and loving. Oh, I could go on forever about THE LADY TRAVELERS GUIDE TO DECEPTION WITH AN UNLIKELY EARL and how perfectly, utterly, truly enchanting it is!
I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own.