Brought to you by OBS reviewer Daniele
Revenge has never been so seductive.
When her husband is killed at Waterloo, Lilias Fairchild takes up his cavalry sword and boldly storms the front, earning herself the nickname Angel of Vengeance. But there is another angel on the battlefield that is just as single-minded, and just as ruthless…
Alistair Whitmore, the Marquess of Angelford, is a British spy. Code name: Angel. Still haunted by a first love felled by assassins, his mission draws him to Waterloo, where he is captivated by a beautiful and mysterious woman fighting amongst the men—a woman who becomes his most intoxicating memory of war.
Passion has never been so dangerous.
Two years later, Lilias and Angelford lock eyes in a crowded ballroom and the memory returns in an exhilarating rush. The history they share, and hide from the world, is as impossible to ignore as the heat of their attraction. But it’s that very connection that spells doom for their scandalous affair. When someone from the shadows of their past proves a dire threat to their lives, passion might not be enough to save them. (Goodreads)
In Bed With a Spy gets off to an exciting start when Lilias Fairchild, wild with grief after her husband is mortally wounded during the battle of Waterloo, takes up her husband’s saber and charges into battle with no mercy. She briefly locks eyes with Alistair Whitmore, the Marquess of Angelford, and he carries the vision of her with him long after the war is over. She earns the moniker Angel of Vengeance, and her story becomes somewhat of a scandalous legend with the English ton. The two cross paths again two years later at a party, and their attraction is instant and intense. As a widow, it is socially acceptable for Lilias to take a lover, but in all the time since her husband’s death no one has stirred her until Angel. He has a reputation as a rake and is haunted by the death of his former love but cannot resist the lure of Lilias. It is soon revealed that Lilias’s husband Jeremy was killed by an assassin known as a Death Adder, and not simply a casualty of war, the same group of assassins who killed Angel’s love Gemma. To further complicate matters, Lilias finds that Jeremy himself was a Death Adder. How can she trust the spy Angel, or anyone, after such a betrayal? Their relationship grows beyond lust when they join forces in an attempt to uncover the leader of the Death Adder’s identity. Incorporate a marriage proposal from Jeremy’s cousin Grant, the earnest concern of Jeremy’s closest friend Jason, and the meddling of Lilias’s mother-in-law Catherine and Angel’s mother and sisters-in-law and there is plenty to keep the reader interested in their journey to their happily ever after.
If I have made the story sound like a total bodice ripper, it is not. I found it to be much more of an espionage thriller, full of intrigue and suspense, than a straight up Regency romance. The concept of the assassins was an excellent hook, and it provided a good venue for precarious relationships and dangerous situations. Lilias having to deal with the betrayal of the assassins’ duplicity was heartbreaking, as was Angel’s self blame for Gemma’s death. The identity of the leader, though not a huge surprise, was wrenching all the same. I appreciated Lilias but, for some reason I cannot quite put my finger on, she fell a little flat. However, I really liked Angel (I know…the reader is supposed to fall a little in love with the romantic hero) with his golden good looks, mysterious demeanor, and true heart. But, I think the clincher was that he was a musician as well as a spy. What is there not to love about a man who writes a song for his lover? And just think about the strength and talent in those violinist’s hands.
I enjoyed In Bed With a Spy, and I will seek out the other books in the series. I recommend this to lovers of Regency period fiction that is more action than romance.
*OBS would like to thank the publisher for supplying a free copy of this title in exchange for an honest review*