Saturday, December 10, 2011

A Joint Inky Review of A Necessary Deception

by Dina Sleiman and Susanne Dietze

This week we enjoyed Laurie Alice Eakes lovely article on Regency Christmas traditions. Today we would like to recommend her wonderful new novel, A Necessary Deception.
Susanne Says:
In 1812, England is engaged in war against France…and on the verge of another war with the Americans. Political intrigue swirls through the ballrooms of London’s elite like the silk gowns of marriage-minded debutantes.

In this environment of whispers and schemes—both political and matrimonial—Laurie Alice Eakes delivers a satisfying tale in A Necessary Deception, weaving delicious Regency detail with a fast-paced plot and a tender romance.

Young widow Lady Lydia Gale believes she is repaying a favor of her deceased husband’s when she obtains parole for a French prisoner, expecting to never hear about the matter again. But when a mysterious man uses the information to blackmail her, placing her family in jeopardy, Lydia’s troubles are just beginning. When the French prisoner, Christien de Meuse, appears in her drawing room, Lydia finds herself enmeshed in a dangerous web of international stratagems.

Lydia should be helping her younger sisters, bluestocking Cassandra and defiantly daring Honore, make their bows to Society, but balancing her responsibility with handling the terms of her blackmailer is no small task. Especially when she feels attracted to the Frenchman. For which country does he truly spy? Is she protecting her family or leading them into danger?

Eakes is an award-winning author, recognized for her way with a story and her attention to historical detail. Once again, she's written an engaging plot, emotionally and spiritually. I was fully invested in Lydia and Christien's adventure. The blackmail plot takes many twists and turns, too, urging the reader to keep turning pages to determine the identity of the true villain. The characters are interesting and sympathetic, and I’m pleased I’ll get to see them again in two more books, forthcoming in the Daughters of Bainbridge series.

Dina Says:
Since Susanne did such a great job capturing the essence of this book, let me dig a little deeper into my three favorite aspects.

1) The Genre: There is something marvelous about a writer working in their bliss. As a friend of Laurie Alice, I know this is the book she always dreamed of writing. While she paid her dues in sweet romance, category inspirational romance, and even romantic suspense set on the American shores, in this book she finally gave us the Patricia Veryan style Regency romantic suspense of her heart. And her love for the genre shines through on every page.

2) The Spiritual Thread: What I enjoyed about the spiritual thread in this novel was that hero and heroine both struggled with the same basic issue--a need to forgive themselves. And while neither felt they deserved forgiveness, both wanted forgiveness for the other and for those around them. They both needed to accept God's forgiveness and healing for the book to achieve its happy ending. This is how a Christian romance should work. They need God first before they are ready for each other.

3) The Sisters: I like my romance meaty, full of subplots and rich minor characters, and Laurie Alice certainly supplied those in this book through the sisters. These spirited girls further supported the theme by needing forgiveness for their own weaknesses. I can't wait to join the scientific and bespectacled sister number two on her journey through the world of hot air balloons, or to see what sort of mischief sister number three will manage to get herself into in the final book of the series.

Have you read any of Laurie Alice's novels yet? Do you like romance, Regency, suspense? What do you think about a fusion of the three?
Find Laurie Alice Eakes online at  A Necessary Deception is available at your favorite Christian retailer or on Amazon.


  1. I can't wait to read this one. Laurie Alice really sold me with her Lady in the Mist. I love both 19th Century AND suspense so this should be a great combination. Plus, as you said, Dina, the chance to see her do a regency!

    nice job ladies!
    I've been trailing her around trying to win this one. I have about four or five books that I'd really like to read so I guess I'll keep stalking those authors!

  2. Ladies,

    I enjoyed today's posting very much...I will deep my eyes open for Laurie's novels...they sound fabulous :)

    Merry Christmas to you and yours.

    kmkuka at yahoo dot com

  3. Great review, ladies. I love the two-perspective approach.

    I love romance, suspense, and history. My favorite is when all three are together.

  4. Good morning. I absolutely adore Regencies and Laurie Alice spins a great tale, so I was very excited to read this book.

    Good points, Dina. Like you, I appreciated how the characters--including the sisters, who get their own books--have weaknesses and flaws which are easy to identify with.

    It's a good read, and I look forward to the next books.

  5. Hi ladies, thanks everyone for stopping by.

  6. Thanks Karen. We enjoy seeing you. Can you believe Christmas eve is two weeks from todacy?

    I'm getting closer to being ready.

  7. Thank you for the nice review and interest. The first historical romance I ever read was a kind of romantic suspense gothic thing the librarian gave an nine-year-old girl who read way ahead of her grade and voraciously. I have never met anyone else who has read this author, as I think she wrote in the 60s or even 50s, and I think it cemented me in my love of the romantic suspense historical. Geogette Heyer did the same. She may not have written jeopardy type novels in her Regencies, with one or two exceptions like Cousin Kate, and her books hold a lot of suspense in the human drama form.

    I am having fun writing this series and hope to be able to write more. I'm also hoping for a ballon ride before I do edits on A Flight of Fancy, Cassandra's book. Just in case I need to enhance something. :-)

  8. A balloon ride sounds awesome. Go for it!

  9. Great review, Dina. I finally picked up my US mail and was happy to find a copy of A Necessary Deception waiting for me. Can't wait to read it.

    As for other books by Laurie Alice, I read Lady in the Mist last March and really enjoyed it. She uses all the senses better than anyone I know.



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