2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Wonderful Historical Elements - 4-1/2*,
This review is from: A Sinful Alliance (Mass Market Paperback)
Lady Marguerite Dumas, was orphaned at an early age. The illegitimate daughter of a courtesan and a noble, Marguerite learned to make her own way in the world of the French nobility. As the King of France's most feared spy and assassin only a select few knew her as the "Emerald Lily", one of them being Nicolai Ostrovsky, a man she was once sent to assassinate.
After her failure with Nicolai, Marguerite was given a second chance by the King of France to redeem herself by infiltrating and gathering information at the court of King Henry VIII. While there she would find a false world where polite words and manners hid many dark and evil secrets; where Nicolai Ostrovsky, once her worst enemy became her most fervent desire, friend and lover.
*** It's always such a pleasure to discover a new author who captures all the elements needed to define a memorable read. In this, Marguerite and Nicolai had the chemistry that came across the page combined with a well paced adventure. Along with that, the suspense and intrigue were woven seamlessly along with the sensual romance and the dialogs were crisp and entertaining. Now when you take all that and set it amidst an actual historical event involving really fabulous historical personages, then you have it all.
At first it was a bit difficult to understand how Marguerite ended up as an assassin, but the author showed that at the tender age of 15 circumstances occurred where she really had no choice but to follow that path. Over the years her heart became encased with ice in order to survive, however the run-in with Nicolai was a turning point in her life. Nicolai could have ended her life, but instead spared her so that fate could reunite them years later, even though she was still steaming over him besting her years before. Their new game of cat and mouse while in King Henry's court was very entertaining, especially when it appeared that one of them was marked for death! Who saves who, is just one of the many things you'll have to discover for yourself by reading the book.
Played out against the actual historical summit meeting between the French and English - "Treaty of Eternal Peace" - you'll see Henry VIII when he was besotted with Anne Boleyn, along with other famous historical figures. McCabe's fictional leads Marguerite and Nicolai will seem as real as the events that swirled around them and I expect the readers will come away as fully entertained and pleased as this reviewer was. Suspenseful and sensual - very well done!!