1 of 4 people found the following review helpful
A great intellectual romance!,
This review is from: The Secret History of the Pink Carnation (Hardcover)I'm not a great reader of modern romance novels, but I do have a weakness for those old swashbuckler romances like "The Prisoner of Zenda" and the H. Rider Haggard novels. Oddly, I had never read "The Scarlet Pimpernel", which this book uses as a jumping-off point, but if you liked any of the books mentioned so far, you'll love "The Secret History of the Pink Carnation".
Eloise Kelly is an American grad student in London, working on her dissertation on Napoleonic-era spies (or, "Why I Love Men in Masks"). She's a great character, feisty, funny and tad sarcastic. With the help of some family papers, she sets out to discover the true identity of the Pink Carnation, the only spy never unmasked. Hindering her effects is Colin, a handsome Englishman who wants to protect his family secrets.
Rapidly paced and well written, "The Secret History of the Pink Carnation" alternates between Eloise's modern-day narration and the story of Amy Balcourt, a 19th-century girl whose father died on the Guillotine. With characters like Napoleon, Josephine and other actual personalities, the reader gets a painless history lesson along with a great read.