on May 10, 2016 :
The second book in the Lady Emily Capers has the title character as the focus, her investigative skills in use to solve her own mystery as she fights to choose the path of her own life.
Again in this story, the Regency detail is outstanding, and I loved the appearance of conduct and etiquette books and that some of the Prince Regent’s excesses are mentioned. New to me, but fascinating, is an art society specifically for aristocracy, and while I have heard of them before, the Bow Street Runners gained some substance in my mind. Reading this book made me want to learn more about these topics—I enjoy it when a fictional book leads to a desire to study the reality of the time period.
The romance has a bit of an ironic twist in this novel—even a woman who has all of the advantages of wealth and privilege still cannot marry for love: her hands are tied almost as firmly as a poor character who needs to save the family fortunes through marriage.
Lady Emily is an interesting character in many respects. Her art is unfeminine in many minds because of its subject matter, yet she places so much of herself in each painting. She wants to create art that has worth and emotional impact, yet she shies away from emotion herself in many instances. Her spunk and tenacity as she solves the mysteries she encounters are almost modern even as she is forced to live in a world where women are limited in their options and spheres. She is a complicated character with depth and much to be discovered, by the reader and her hero.
I thoroughly enjoyed this second book in the series. While not necessary to understand this novel, I would recommend reading the Lady Emily Capers from the beginning; it is rather like visiting old friends and learning things about them previously unknown but entirely delightful.
I received a complimentary copy of this book from the author in exchange for this honest review. All of the opinions expressed are my own.
(reviewed 52 days after purchase)
on April 5, 2016 :
Art and Artifice is the second book in the Lady Emily Capers, however, it can be read and enjoyed without having read book one. I actually enjoyed book one, Secrets and Sensibilities, a bit more than this book, however, Art and Artifice has plenty to recommend it! It contains some romance, witty humor, a dashingly smooth villain, and a light mystery to solve. I definitely enjoyed the second installment in this series. It was fun to connect with Emily, Priscilla, Daphne, and Ariadne once again and be able to read the fun banter that flows between them. I did feel that the ending left things a bit open ended in preparation for book three, so I would recommend having book three, Ballrooms and Blackmail, available to read immediately upon finishing this book. These are clean and sweet regency titles. I look forward to continuing to read this fun series with the next title soon.
I received a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
(reviewed 24 days after purchase)
on March 19, 2016 :
Art And Artifice by Regina Scott
Lady Emily Capers Series Book Two
In the first book; Secrets and Sensibilities, four young women go with their chaperone to Brentfield Manor and end up with a mystery on their hands. Now the girls; Lady Emily Southwell, Priscilla Tate, Daphne and Ariadne Courdebas are back in London for their first Season.
Lady Emily Southwell is the daughter of a duke. It may sound all good and well but there are some negatives as well. Emily finds she is engaged to a man she barely knows and he doesn't want to wait to marry. His Grace, her father, thinks it a perfect match and is unbendable. Emily and her friends don their spy caps once again to find some dirt on her betrothed.
James “Jamie” Cropper is a Bow Street Runner. As such, he knows that he could never court and no less marry a duke's daughter. But he can save her from an unwanted marriage. He suspects her betrothed of no good, but has yet to prove it. Or is it just something personal from his past that wants to find Lord Robert guilty?
Mystery, humor, and romance in one book. I've enjoyed these first two books in this series and look forward to reading the rest of this series.
**Parts of this book previously published as La Petite Four by Penguin Razorbill
(reviewed 8 days after purchase)
on Jan. 20, 2014 :
Regina Scott has brought us another winner! I really enjoyed this book. It is the second installment in "The Lady Emily Capers." It is the story of Lady Emily Southwell and her three friends: Priscilla, Daphne, and Ariadne. They are debuting into London society. Lady Emily dreams of becoming an artist. However, she is betrothed to Lord Robert Townsend whom she despises. Add handsome Jamie Cropper to this mix of colorful characters and you have the recipe for a very entertaining novel that kept me guessing from the first page! This is a truly wonderful book from a very talented author! It is a real page turner that mixes both romance and mystery together, which I consider the best of both worlds. You are really drawn into the character of Emily, who is very strong and knows exactly what she wants from life. I truly could not put this book down and will be adding it to my personal library. Regina Scott is a great storyteller. You really feel as if you were living during this time. Her descriptions of London are remarkable. I also really like how her characters seem to come alive and are so real. Five stars!
(reviewed 9 days after purchase)