Wed to a Spy: An All the Queen's Spies Novel

Wed to a Spy: An All the Queen's Spies Novel

by Sharon Cullen

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780399179815
Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
Publication date: 05/23/2017
Series: All the Queen's Spies , #1
Sold by: Random House
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 273
Sales rank: 21,282
File size: 2 MB

About the Author

Sharon Cullen is the USA Today bestselling author of the Highland Pride series (Sutherland’s Secret, MacLean’s Passion, Campbell’s Redemption) as well as many novels of Regency romance, romantic suspense, paranormal romance, and contemporary romance. If you’d like to find out more about the author and her books, you can visit her blog or her website. She is addicted to social networking, so you can find her on Facebook and Twitter. Friend her! Like her! Follow her! She’d love to hang out with you and talk about her passion: books.

Read an Excerpt

Chapter 1

Holyrood Castle, Edinburgh, Scotland
March 1566

My dearest Pierre,

Scotland is a dreadful place, cold and damp and inhospitable. I do not know how these people live in such deplorable conditions or how they thrive without the warm sun that so often shines on my beloved France.
My sorrow and misery is doubled—nay, tripled—without your presence beside me. I lay my head on my pillow every night and dream of you.

I miss you so, Pierre. I had never believed such nonsense as a broken heart, but I believe it now. Mine is shattered into a thousand tiny shards and will not be whole again until we are reunited.

I live for that day, dream of it at every moment. I will stay chaste for you, as I promised. I will not even look upon another man, for you are the only man for me.

Yours always,
Aimee


Catherine,

Scotland is as you described it. The people are welcoming and kind. I have formed a special bond with Queen Mary, as you had hoped, and we get along well. She is a good queen to her people—


Aimee de Verris threw her quill down, unable to continue with the lies she was attempting to tell her aunt Catherine de Medici. Oh, how she hated her aunt. Aimee looked longingly at her letter to Pierre and stroked the parchment, remembering the feel of his hands in hers, of his cheek pressed against her own. The parchment was a pale second to her Pierre.

With a frustrated growl, she stood and paced restlessly to the window to look out onto the cold landscape of Scotland. She was absolutely certain she would never be warm again. It was a cold that seeped into one’s bones and took up residence there. No matter how high her maid built the fire, Aimee was never warm. She snatched a thick shawl from the chair next to her and wrapped herself up in it, fighting tears of frustration and longing.

What was Pierre doing at this very moment? No doubt he was warm, but did he miss her as much as she missed him? Did he look at the moon as she did and wonder what she was doing at that very moment?

Her hatred for Catherine de Medici burned bright, but it was a cold hatred.

Aimee was Catherine’s spy, through no choice of her own. Just thinking of the night that had changed her entire world made Aimee want to shudder in fear. Catherine had stumbled across Aimee and Pierre in an intimate embrace. Catherine’s wrath was legendary. It was rumored that she beat her own children, and Aimee had been terrified that Catherine would unfurl that wrath on her and Pierre. Pierre had bravely stepped in front of Aimee and shielded her with his body. It was something Aimee would always remember. She’d felt so safe and protected and loved by Pierre.

But Pierre could not protect Aimee forever, and soon enough Catherine had exacted her revenge. She told Aimee that she was being sent to Mary’s court in Scotland. Aimee’s pleas fell on deaf ears. Her promises that Pierre loved her and wanted to marry her were scoffed at. Catherine had looked at her in disdain when, distraught, Aimee had fallen to her knees at Catherine’s feet and begged her not to send her away.

“If you think I will allow you to wed one such as him, you are touched in the head. He is not the one for you.”

Aimee had been stunned. Pierre came from an impeccable lineage. It was a coup for Aimee to have landed him, but none of that mattered to her. Pierre loved her. He’d told her so. And she loved him, and that was all that mattered.

Catherine had openly laughed at the proclamation of love. “You are a bigger fool than I thought. My sister should have sent you to me long ago. I fear it is too late to reform your harlot ways. Scotland will be good for you.” And then she’d outlined exactly what Aimee was to do in Scotland.

“I am being sent to the wilds of a barbaric country for something that I am not ashamed of,” Aimee had said to Catherine, her love for Pierre making her foolish and impetuous. “You are convinced that Pierre and I are not fit for each other and will never marry, so why should I do this thing for you?”

Catherine’s thunderous expression almost had Aimee backing down, but she’d thought of Pierre bravely standing in front of her and known that she could do no less for him.

To her surprise, Catherine’s expression had slowly lessened to thoughtfulness. “You are right, of course. You have no incentive to do as I say while you are ‘banished,’ as you call it. Send me reports on the Scottish queen, detailed reports that tell me what she is up to, and I will allow you to return to the French court. If Pierre is still waiting, you may have him.”

Shivering from the deep cold that seeped through the dark stone of Holyrood Palace, drawn away from her reveries, Aimee swiped at a lone tear and headed back to the escritoire, where she put her finished letter to Pierre and her unfinished letter to Catherine in a drawer beneath her prayer book.

Catherine was expecting a report from Aimee on Mary’s activities, but Aimee had nothing to report. Mary had been kind to her, and they had exchanged stories of growing up in France, but that was the extent of their conversations. If Catherine thought Queen Mary would divulge all her secrets to Aimee, then she was sorely mistaken.

A scratch at the door preceded her maid entering. “What gown will you be wearing tonight, my lady?”

Aimee closed her eyes and drew in a deep breath. “Whatever you think is best, Hannah.”

Hannah went about the room, picking up this and that, presumably putting together Aimee’s clothing for the evening. Another evening spent with Mary and her entourage, pretending that she was happy and that she actually wanted to be here, when her heart was really in France with Pierre.

Customer Reviews

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Wed to a Spy: An All the Queen's Spies Novel 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 16 reviews.
BuckeyeAngel More than 1 year ago
Simon Marchford has been a loyal servant of Queen Elizabeth. He’s finally done with it all and wants to retire to the countryside. However, the queen has one last mission for him. She wants him to go to Scotland to spy on Mary, Queen of the Scots. While in Scotland, Mary asks him to marry and spy on her young cousin, Aimee de Verris, who was sent over from France. I wasn’t really sure how I would feel about this story. The beginning started off kind of typical of this genre and in the beginning Aimee’s moping around for someone else got on my nerves. Luckily I kept on reading. I really liked Simon right from the beginning. He kept getting pulled more and more for duty when he just wants to be done. I really enjoyed Simon’s and Aimee’s adventure together. I can’t wait to read more from this author. **I voluntarily read and reviewed this book
Historical_Romance_Lover More than 1 year ago
I really enjoyed Simon and Aimee's story. It is not often that you come across a historical romance set in the court of the Scottish monarchy. I really enjoyed Aimee. She was put into the awkward position of spying on her cousin, the Queen, but she made the most of it. Too bad her cousin didn't trust her and married her to a stranger. I really liked Simon too. He is to complete one last mission for Queen Elizabeth, one in which would then allow him to retire and settle down. He didn't count on being forced to marry by Queen Mary. Can this couple that was forced to marry, find their HEA with each other?
KimP65 More than 1 year ago
I loved the intrigue and the historical references in this book. The characters were exciting, fun and sexy. I especially loved how the author showed the "royal attitude" that the people under them were almost like puppets and there to play with and entertain them. I felt that I was being transported back and shown more of the reality of the times than the romanticized version of the times. Simon and Aimee were just fantastic characters that were able to maintain their true identities during a time of upheaval and were able to find love. This books was non-stop excitement, so many great characters, I can't wait to see what comes next!
Crystal61 More than 1 year ago
This is going to be a good series. Aimee is inept as a spy but has the strength of character as a warrior. Simon is a great spy but wants out of the business. Sparks fly as danger and death surround them. This was a page turner for me. What would happen next? Would they get caught? I enjoyed the characters, the setting, and the story telling. I recommend this book as well as this author. I received a copy of this story through Netgalley, and this is my unsolicited review.
KimMc More than 1 year ago
Another hit from Cullen. Sir Simon and Aimee's story is fraught with surprise, trepidation and sexy romance at every turn. True to form, this story pulls you in and keeps you interested with its sweet feel and mild suspense.
Hfowler More than 1 year ago
The first book in a new series by Sharon Cullen takes us into the Scottish court of Queen Mary. Queen Elizabeth has sent three of her spies to Mary's court in order to keep tabs on her. One such spy is Simon, a man who dedicated his life to Queen Elizabeth and now just wants to retire to his country estate with his younger sister. But Elizabeth forces him into yet another mission. While in Queen May's court, he meets Aimee, a French woman who was sent to spy on Mary for her Aunt in France. She hates that she is forced to leave her home and the man she loves but she does it with the hope of returning to France to marry her love. What she wasn't expecting was for another meddling monarch, Queen Mary, to force her and Simon into a marriage, one that neither wants. Once married their adventure truly begins and it takes them into hiding during a coup, on the run to England from an angry Queen Mary, and then into Queen Elizabeth's court to fight for the right to their happy ending. Their story was enjoyable, passionate, exciting, and emotionally stimulating. I liked it a lot and enjoyed watching them grow to first trust then love each other deeply. They were well matched and I look forward to seeing what the series has in store for the other two English spies.
debralmartin More than 1 year ago
I love the Elizabethan era and was intrigued when I read the description of this book. Simon Marcheford and two fellow spies travel to Mary, Queen of Scots, court. This is Simon's last mission for Queen Elizabeth and he longs to retire from service and living quietly with his younger sister on his country estate. This dream is foiled when Queen Mary decrees that he should marry Aimee de Verris, a young French nobleman who was sent to Mary's court by the diabolical Catherine de Medici to spy on Mary. Simon and Aimee find themselves wed within 24 hours and neither one of them is happy. When Rizzio, Queen Mary's trusted advisor, is murdered in front of them, they must run for the lives before they are implicated in the murder plot. I enjoyed this story although I thought Aimee was a bit immature for a young woman of twenty-one. Having grown up in the French court, she should have been more savvy and especially about why Catherine had sent her to Mary's court. Her constant pining for Pierre got a bit old. Simon, on the other hand, was the consummate hero. He was kind, generous and cunning. He would protect his wife with every resource he had. I can imagine enduring the horrific details and the subsequent run for their lives would bring Simon and Aimee closer. That part of the story was very believable. I loved all the historical details woven into the story and look forward to reading the next book in the series. I received a copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Sir Simon planned to retire and raise his sister; instead, Queen Elizabeth sends Sir Simon to spy and report on Mary, Queen of Scots; This should be his last assignment. Aimee has been sent (by her aunt, Queen Catherine de Medici of Spain), to spy on Queen Mary, as well. Lady Aimee's been raised in Queen Catherine's court and is untrained as a spy. She longs to marry Pierre. Mary, Queen of Scots, stuns both Sir Simon and Lady Aimee when she... Interesting historical espionage romance. Enjoyed the characters (though sometimes became irritated with Aimee's immature way). She did improve to a stronger and more likeable character later. Fun read. 3 1/2 stars. Voluntarily read an ARC, thru Netgalley and publisher, for an honest review.
Ajgray More than 1 year ago
I received an advance reader copy in exchange for a fair review. Loved this book. It is full of romance, mystery and danger. The love that grew between Aimee and Simon is a great story and it is intriguing. The book holds your attention and it is full of suspense. I would highly recommend this book.
JuliaAD More than 1 year ago
Simon is trying to retire and take his sister to his estate to live peacefully for the rest of his life. But, the queen has other ideas. She sends him to Spain and his friend to Scotland to spy. He ends up in Scotland and all of a sudden he is married to Aimee, a French spy. Aimee isn't much of a spy, but she is trying so that she can go home to France and marry Pierre. Queen Mary decides that Simon and Aimee would be great together and tells them they will wed the next day. Neither wants the marriage, but how do you say no to the queen? After a murder and an arrest warrant for Simon and Aimee, they are forced to flee. They end up back in England, Queen Elizabeth isn't happy to have a French spy married to one of her spies and refuses to release Simon's sister to him. How will they all be together?
TammyS32 More than 1 year ago
This was a fast paced historical read. Aimee is sent unhappily from France to Scotland to spy for Catherine de Medici. Simon has been requested by Queen Elizabeth to finish one last assignment and spy on Queen Mary. Little did either suspect the Queen decided they should marry. Plenty of drama and intrigue in this read. Character wise I liked Simon more than Aimee. Overall it is an entertaining read and I really liked it.
BookReview4you More than 1 year ago
'Wed to a Spy' by Sharon Cullen is book One in the New series "An All the Queen's Spies". This is the story of Aimee de Verris and Simon Marcheford. Aimee is from France and is in love with a man her Aunt Catherine de Medici does not like. So when she is caught in a compromising position with him, her Aunt sends her to Scotland to spy on Queen Mary. Catherine has promised Aimee if she does this she will agree to her marriage to this man. But Aimee isn't spy material and hates it. Simon is a spy for Queen Elizabeth and had hoped to retire but the Queen asked that him and his friends help her with one more mission. Simon is sent to Scotland to spy on Queen Marry. Queen Mary has ordered Simon to marry Aimee...of which neither has a choice. Simon and Aimee soon find themselves having to depend on each other and possibly fallen in love. "My honest review is for a special copy I voluntarily read."
def618 More than 1 year ago
I enjoy stories set in the Elizabethan era and this one did not disappoint. Sir Simon Marcheford is a spy for Queen Elizabeth who would like to retire to his estate with his younger sister, Judith, who is residing at Elizabeth's court. But the queen has one last mission for her best spies, Simon, Viscount William Sheffield and Tristan Fitzherbert. William and Tristan are sent to Scotland and Simon to Spain, though he ends up in Scotland. Lady Aimee de Verris has been sent to Scotland from France by her aunt, Catherine de Medici, to spy on Queen Mary. Aimee is furious as she believes herself in love with Pierre and fears she will never see him again. Mary is not sure of Aimee and introduces her to Simon, direct from Philip's Spanish court, to neutralize her spying. Mary insists they wed. When Rizzio is murdered before Aimee's eyes, Simon pulls her away and they hide in the castle until they can escape. They meet up with Will and Tristan and plan an escape back to England. No spoilers from me, but of course there is a HEA. Sharon Cullen writes excellent Scottish stories and I look forward to Will and Tristan's HEA. Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for allowing me this ARC. (less)
jdh2690 More than 1 year ago
The title of this story was an eye-catcher for me because it has a hint of humor about it. Lady Aimee is sent to Scotland to spy on Queen Mary by her aunt, Catherine de Medici, in a diabolical plot to get Aimee away from a love interest in France. Queen Mary is suspicious about Aimee’s purpose in coming to Scotland so she diabolically weds Simon, her spymaster, to Aimee so he can keep an eye on her and report to the Queen. I will not go further with this tale here and give all away, but it is a tale full of history, intrigue and romance and Cullen’s best so far, in my humble opinion.
PegGlover More than 1 year ago
Aimee de Verris hated to leave France but her Aunt, the powerful Catherine de Medici, had given her no choice in the matter. Her task was to spy on Mary, the Queen of Scotland. Aimee’s Aunt told her that if she spied on the Queen successfully, she could return to France and to her beloved, Pierre. Although Aimee and the Queen had known each other as children, Aimee doubted that Mary would spill Scotland's secrets to her. She despised every moment that she spent spying, in the cold, wet climate of Scotland, until she met Simon Marcheford. Simon Marcheford had expressed to the Queen several times, his desire to retire. But, Queen Elizabeth was not ready to give up her most valuable spy. “One more mission,” she told him. Could Simon trust her words, this time? Did he, have a choice? Simon's last assignment, however, would utterly change his life. When he landed in Scotland, to his complete surprise, Queen Mary forced him to marry Aimee de Verris. Even though  Aimee was a beautiful woman, she was a complete stranger. She was also in love with another man. Being the good spy that Simon Marcheford was, he hid his secrets well. And, he was not above using blackmail, even to a Queen, to get what he wanted. I thoroughly enjoyed taking a peek into the inner workings of Queen Mary and Queen Elizabeth’s courts. Wed to a Spy is a captivating and well-written story. Fans of historical fiction and romance will not be disappointed. Thank you, Random House Publishing Group- Loveswept and NetGalley, for my advanced review copy.
HeyerF4n More than 1 year ago
A Thoroughly Enjoyable Love Story. Set during the reigns of Queen Elizabeth 1 and Mary, Queen of Scots, this love story is set against the backdrop of a turbulent time in Scottish history and the difficulties faced by monarchs in keeping control of their throne and country. It also delineates how the lives of their subjects could be irrevocably altered based on their whims. I loved this story and highly recommend. I received a complimentary copy of this book from NetGalley. I was not compensated for my review, and I was not required to write a positive review. The opinion expressed here is my own.