Friday, December 16, 2022

The Memory of Her The Gentleman Spy Mysteries #3

The Memory of Her is the third Gentleman Spy historical mystery/romance by Bianca M. Schwarz. Released 5th April 2022, it's 288 pages and is available in paperback and ebook formats. It's worth noting that the ebook format has a handy interactive table of contents as well as interactive links and references throughout. I've really become enamored of ebooks with interactive formats lately. 

This is a starkly written, often dark, espionage romance set in Britain in the very late Regency period (ca 1823 - which to be pedantic is 11 years -after- the Regency, but that's a minor quibble). The main romance at the beginning of this book (Henry and Eliza's) was set up in the first two book and is at an end due to his expected marriage. She isn't and never was an acceptable spouse and they've morphed into friend who used to be lovers at this point. Her assignment is to help with the rehabilitation of another agent, Allen Strathem, who was Henry's best friend and also secretly in love with Eliza.

Due to the extensive list of dramatis personae and their sometimes torturously involved interconnections, this book works better as part of the series and not as a standalone. The writing is consistently high quality and readable. Readers should be aware of the inclusion of direct and sometimes explicit descriptions of physical torture, sexual trauma, and mental illness. 

Four stars. Well written and plotted. Quite dark in places.

Disclosure: I received an ARC at no cost from the author/publisher for review purposes.

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