Juliana Telford isn’t your ordinary nineteenth-century lady. She’s more interested in publishing her research on ladybugs than in marriage or fashionable dresses. Spencer Northam isn’t your ordinary nineteenth-century gentleman. He’s a spy for the War Office on his first mission. But when Spencer’s assignment involved keeping an eye on the lovely Juliana and her friends, their plans for a season without romance are unapologetically foiled. – excerpt from book.
Love, Lies and Spies by Cindy Anstey is a historical romance in the YA genre because of the main character’s age I guess. I have always loved this genre and if you’ve been reading my reviews then you know I’ve read many. So the bad thing is that I can compare it with many other books and my verdict for this book is it was just okay. It has a plot that is similar to many other books and I find it quite repeating at some point. But I guess this is because a season London is always the same for the ladies, you can’t run from traditions. So when there was one or two plot twist in the book, those were the parts that managed to capture my attention well. Other than that, generally I was always waiting for something romantic to happen between the characters.
As for the characters, I really wanted more interactions between them. They were not particularly characters that grew with the story because they are who they are. I felt that the side characters were also a bit bland and didn’t necessarily supported the main characters well enough. Sometimes it felt like they were just there hovering around in the background without doing much. Although I have much criticism, I do like the personality of the characters which is one of the reasons that I kept reading the book. They are not special people but their personality fit the plot very well.
In conclusion, I would say that this book is not boring but not too exciting to read. It certainly was entertaining but at the borderline of almost dropping to the boredom line. I don’t really recommend this to historical romance readers because there are way better books than this. But if you’re interested in the characters themselves maybe you can give it a go, find it in a library. Sadly this is one of those books that I would not read again and probably don’t mind not having in my collection.