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Sweet Revenge: A Lady Arianna Regency Mystery

Average Rating 4.5
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  • Posted April 12, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Can love be as decedent at chocolate?

    Lady Arianna Hadley has a mystery to solve, a meal to prepare and a bullet to dodge all before breakfast.

    Arianna is trying to solve the mystery of who framed her father for a crime he did not commit that caused his death. Posing as a French male chef in a house where mystery abounds seems like a good idea until the Prince is poisoned and officials are everywhere asking questions especially the man in charge of the investigation Alessandro De Quincy, the Earl of Saybrook. He is clever, charming and way too smart for Arianna to fool for very long. Saybrook is on to her but for some reason believes every delectable lie coming from her lips. He may be recovering from war wounds but that is not going to slow him down from coming up with a plan and using Arianna in every capacity possible, especially if it involves being able to kiss the truth out of her.

    Their adventure is dangerous, London society is a nest of vipers ready to strike on their own, and in the middle of everything are Arianna and Saybrook holding up and onto each other until the bitter end. But when all the secrets are revealed and the real answers obtained will they forgive each other for the sins they have committed in the past?

    Wow I loved this book! You have drama, mystery, intrigue and some great chocolate recipes that make your mouth water with their description alone. The characters are stellar in that they are strong and determined with just enough secrets to make sure you read every page carefully to not miss a clue of what is going on with whom. Ms. Penrose has started this series off with a book it will be hard to top it is that enjoyable.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 10, 2012

    This is the first Andrea Penrose that I've read. Her writing st

    This is the first Andrea Penrose that I've read. Her writing style is terrific. The book is excellent. It keeps your interest from beginning to end.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 20, 2013

    Sweet Revenge (Steel B.ue)

    Stormed in

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 10, 2012

    Loved it

    I thought this was a great book. I read it all in one sitting, because I couldn't put it down. Then I bought the second one the next day and loved it too. Hope there are more to come!

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  • Posted September 10, 2011

    Quality Historical Suspense

    Since her father was murdered when she was fifteen, Lady Arianna lived through hellish times to survive, with her driving goal to find her father's killer and make him pay pushing her on. Which is why she is disguised as a French chef in Lady Spencer's home gathering information for her revenge. Her plans are interrupted when somebody attempts to poison the Prince Regent using her chocolate desert. Somebody felt the chef was the easy target to set up for such a treasonous act and Lady Arianna is now under scrutiny.

    Alessandro De Quincy, the Earl of Saybrook is enlisted by an underhanded government official to investigate in spite of his war injury to his leg. Nevertheless Saybrook had been in the intelligence branch during the war and is sharp and devious. He sees through Arianna's disguise, just in time to save her from a bullet. He decides that she can be of use in the investigation and they reluctantly join forces to determine who tried to kill the Prince and why.

    While this had all the ingredients to have been a good regency romance, the author kept the romantic tension in the background and focused on making a suspenseful mystery which paid off exponentially. Arianna is a heroine that you route for immediately. She has been through the school of hard knocks and survived with vengeance driving her. She picked up many skills along the way including the use of disguise from a theater group and especially how to fight dirty to survive. She has hardened herself and believes that she has no heart anymore after the things she has had to do in life. Trust does not come easily at all, and she sure doesn't trust the aristocrat Saybrook, after all, it was an aristocrat that murdered her father.

    Saybrook has never been the same since the war and his injury. The assignment tossed to him by the government is clearly to let him be the fall guy for any missteps in the investigation. Saybrook takes this new lease on life and is inspired to get to the truth and not be used as a convenient scapegoat. The Saybrook character is just complicated enough with glimpses of his personal pain yet fire for life.

    The plot has plenty of twists and surprises making it suspenseful. Who killed Arianna's father is not who anybody expected and that goes for the person who made the attempt on the Prince's life. The motivation for all this becomes clear as the story plays out.

    The climatic confrontation with the killer is a nail-biter and gets the blood pumping, so kudos there. I must confess I didn't expect this level of writing, plot and character development that was balanced and polished throughout. I feel this should have been released in hardcover and spotlighted by the publisher more.

    This novel contains drama, mystery, intrigue, adventure, smuggling, an influential criminal ring, history, sharp wit, and a touch of romance all blended seamlessly. I found this novel easily rivaled the Sebastion St. Cyr series and for me may (may) have even out done it. If you enjoy historical mysteries with plenty of suspense and intrigue, Sebastion St. Cyr, Charles Lennox, the gaslight mysteries with Sergeant Frank Malloy, or the Lady Emily mysteries I think you owe it to yourself to read this novel.

    Obtained from publisher for an honest review
    Mysteries and My Musings Blog

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  • Posted February 22, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    This Regency mystery is an exciting historical

    In 1802 an earl, Richard Hadley, left for Jamaica with his daughter Arianna to avoid being exposed as a cheat. For years they hopped the islands as the self exiled earl became consumed by drink. In 1812 when he was murdered, his daughter assumed one of his unsavory business partners killed her dad. She vows vengeance and poses as a French male and obtains a position as a chef to Lady Spencer.

    Her employer is close with men who are part of a Circle that her late father belonged to also. Arianna keeps an alert eye on these aristocrats as she believes one of them is the killer. However, before she gets very far with her investigation, the Prince Regent is poisoned after eating Arianna's dessert. She knows she is innocent, but most people want her hanged. Leading the official inquiry is the Earl of Saybrook who sees through her masquerade and considers exposing her as a fraud. Instead they join forces as he introduces her to the Ton as a distant relation. As they partner up top solve the assassination attempt, danger mounts as someone wants both dead especially her.

    This Regency mystery is an exciting historical as the two investigations converge into one which leads Saybrook and Arianna to work together. An emotional bond occurs between them, but neither loses sight of the mission. There are actually more puzzlers to Sweet Revenge as there is a plenty of criminal activity making the inquiry much more complicated. Andrea Penrose has written a super early nineteenth century whodunit that fans will appreciate and will want a second helping.

    Harriet Klausner

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    Posted July 9, 2012

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    Posted May 8, 2013

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    Posted June 16, 2011

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    Posted July 12, 2013

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