Author: Shana Galen
Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca
Published Date: September 6, 2011
Links: Goodreads | B&N | AmazonAfter having so much fun reading When You Give a Duke a Diamond, I decided to read this one also by Ms. Galen. It’s been languishing away in my Kindle library for a while so I thought it deserved some attention as well. It’s one of the sillier regency I’ve read, but I still enjoyed it a lot.
Let the games begin...
No Man Can Outsmart Him...
Lord Adrian Smythe may appear a perfectly boring gentleman, but he leads a thrilling life as one of England's most preeminent spies, an identity so clandestine even his wife is unaware of it. But he isn't the only one with secrets...
She's Been Outsmarting Him For Years...
Now that the Napoleonic wars have come to an end, daring secret agent Lady Sophia Smythe can hardly bear the thought of returning home to her tedious husband. Until she discovers in the dark of night that he's not who she thinks he is after all.
Unbeknownst to one another, Adrian and Sophia are both spies for the Foreign Office. When Napoleon was defeated, they found themselves dismissed from the Barbican group – the prominent spy group under Lord Melbourne. They found out each other’s identities just as a chance to return to the Foreign Office appears. Now they must compete with one another if they want their old position back.
This was a very quick read for me. I breezed through the book pretty much in one day. As such, I honestly didn’t think much about the characters but just enjoyed the ride. Adrian and Sophia are both likeable characters and they’re a great couple when they’re not fighting about who’s the better spy. Both of them have their reasons for wanting to be a spy – Adrian to make up for his traitor father, and Sophia because her father was one. Also, after having three miscarriages, Sophia just couldn’t stay home alone in the empty house.
I really liked Adrian and Sophia together. In fact, they’re basically always together in the book, but they’re pretty standard characters and nothing really made them stand out from the sea of romance heroes and heroines I’ve read about. The story was very fast-paced with one event happening after another leaving the reader with barely any time to catch her breath, but everything was very easy to follow. Overall while I enjoyed the story, I had quite a bit of suspension of disbelief. First of all, how do they live with one another for so many years without knowing that the other was a spy? Sophia and Adrian’s occasionally bickering about who’s the better spy either had me laughing out loud or just want to shake the two of them and tell them to grow up already!
At the end of the day, I did have a lot of fun reading this. Much like When You Give a Duke a Diamond, this is a light-hearted read with a sweet romance. However, this one is much sillier with more unbelievable elements than When You Give a Duke a Diamond. Regardless, I’m now totally a fan and will definitely be reading Ms. Galen’s other/future works.