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Taming A Gentleman Spy: 2 (The Spies of Mayfair Series) [Paperback]

Maggi Andersen
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
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Book Description

2 Mar 2014 The Spies of Mayfair Series
John Haldane, Earl of Strathairn, is on an urgent mission to find the killer of his fellow spy. Has the treasonous Frenchman, Count Forney, returned to England to wreak havoc? Or has someone new landed on English shores to stir up rebellion in the Midlands? After visiting the young widow of one of his agents, Strathairn strengthens his resolve. A spy should never marry. And most certainly not to Lady Sibella Winborne, with her romantic ideas of love and marriage. Unable to give Sibella up entirely, he keeps her close as a friend. And then, weak fool that he is, he kisses her… Lady Sibella Winborne has refused several offers of marriage since her first Season years ago – when she first set eyes on the handsome Earl of Strathairn. Sibella’s many siblings have always rushed to her aid to discourage an ardent suitor, but not this time. Her elder brother, Chaloner, Marquess of Brandreth, has approved Lord Coombe’s suit. Sibella yearns to set up her own household. She is known to be the sensible member of the family. But she doesn’t feel at all sensible about Lord Strathairn. If only she could forget that kiss…

Product details

  • Paperback: 296 pages
  • Publisher: Knox Robinson Publishing (2 Mar 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1910282022
  • ISBN-13: 978-1910282021
  • Product Dimensions: 1.7 x 12.5 x 20 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 2,428,623 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

I'm an Australian author. I live in the beautiful Southern Highlands of New South Wales with my husband, a lawyer, and our spoiled Persian cat. We are surrounded by wildlife here, ducks swim in our pool, yellow-crested cockatoos swarm in the trees to eat the seed we provide, chickens from a neighbor wander in and supply us with fresh eggs. Possums visit us at night for a dish of banana.
I write historical romances, romantic suspense and young adult novels. I'm a plotter who occasionally flies into the mist. I enjoy reading Lee Child's novels and the way he describes the process: "The way to write a thriller is to ask a question at the beginning, and answer it at the end."

Product Description

About the Author

Maggi Andersen fell in love with the Georgian and Regency worlds after reading the books of Georgette Heyer. Victoria Holt's Gothic Victorian novels were also great favourites. Maggi's free time is spent enjoying her garden and the local wildlife, reading, movies and the theatre. She lives in the beautiful Southern Highlands of Australia.

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Espionage and Romance in Regency England 14 Jan 2014
Format:Kindle Edition
Being a fan of Maggi Andersen's Regency stories, I was not disappointed in her latest addition to her `Mayfair Spy' series. Her heroines are always of their time, in that being dominated by male relatives, husbands and sometimes even suitors, they have to find a way round Regency conventions to live the life they want. Her heroine Sibella, like the author's other ladies, is no weak and pliable female, but still her life is not completely her own as she has familial responsibilities and society to consider.

Sibella is under pressure from her family to choose a suitable husband, the only ambition for a woman in the early 1800's. Given the freedom of being left her own devices, she would settle on her long time love, John, Earl of Straithairn, a family friend returned from the wars whom she would marry for love.

John has also been doing his duty, to the crown, working as a spy to root out Napoleonic sympathizers who threaten the English government. John has lost a close friend to the cause, leaving a widow and child, so he feels he should deny himself domestic life in case history repeats itself.

He underestimates Sibella, however. Feisty and intelligent, she would take John on any terms, the chemistry between them is unmistakable. There is a degree of misunderstanding between the two as John mistakes her pride for disinterest, and he does the same. To make matters worse, John tries convince Sibella she would be better off without him - which is guaranteed to make her more determined -naturally, but how does a respectable Regency lady get the man she wants and still remain acceptable to society?
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By Lori
Format:Kindle Edition
Find this review and more at Lusty Penguin Reviews!

Taming a Gentleman Spy, the second book in the Spies of Mayfair series, is a spellbinding regency romance filled with mystery and suspense by Maggi Andersen.

John Haldane, the fourth Earl of Strathairn, is a spy who has been enchanted with Lady Sibella Winborne ever since she came out for her first season. While at the same time, Sibella has been attracted to John and wonders why he doesn’t propose. I thoroughly enjoyed the sexual tension that simmers between John and Sibella, especially knowing how strong their feelings are and that they are unable to act upon them. John is a sympathetic character since he truly loves Sibella but can’t see a way to have a wife with the job he has. As Sibella hasn’t accepted a marriage proposal, her older brother arranges for her to marry Lord Coombe. Although not happy about the arranged marriage, Sibella decides to make the best of it. Sibella is a spirited lady who tends to speak her mind, which I just adored about her. Widowed, Lord Coombe hopes to have an heir with Sibella. Since Lord Coombe is arrogant, distant, and secretive, Sibella begins to suspect that the death of Coombe’s first wife wasn’t just a horrible accident. Curious, Sibella investigates Coombe and figures out what happened to his wife, making her a perfect match for John and further endeared her character to me. Along with the love triangle, Andersen, intricately weaves in another mystery into the story, the murder of John’s partner. All of these elements combine to create a intriguing and page-turning novel. Without giving too much away, I loved how Andersen ends Sibella’s relationship with Coombe, a most fitting ending that paves the way for Sibella and John to have their own happily ever after.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Taming A Gentleman Spy 13 Mar 2014
Format:Paperback
Taming A Gentleman Spy

Book 2 of The Spies of Mayfair Setries

By

Maggi Anderson

“If ever beauty I did see
Which I desired, and got, ‘twas but a dream of thee.”

The Good Morrow. John Donne.

Taming A Gentleman Spy is an enthralling historical novel set in The Regency era after Napoleon has been defeated at the Battle of Waterloo and then exiled. At that time the Government feared the effect of The French Revolution and its supporters at home and abroad whose aim was to overturn law and order.

John Haldane, 4th Earl of Strathairn, a gentleman spy, returned to England after fighting the French in the Peninsula Wars and at the Battle of Waterloo. His experiences gathering information have marked him, and no one is more aware of this than Sibella, sister of the Marquess of Brandreth.

Brandreth, who has heard rumours about Strathairn’s link with the war office and the spymaster, warns Strathairn not to pay particular attention to Sibella, “…who loves home and hearth. She looks for a husband who will sit by the fire with her at night.” Brandreth doubts Strathairn could make Sibella happy.

Sibella is curious as to why Strathairn does not intend to marry in the foreseeable future. She thinks they are well-suited and his kiss thrilled her.

Strathairn will not marry Sibella because he could be killed like his partner, Nesbit, whose widow is pregnant.

On the ground, next to Nesbit’s lifeless body, lay a cravat pin in the shape of an eagle like the one favoured by Count Fornay, a dangerous revolutionary who fermented rebellion in England, and is presumed dead. “And why,” Strathairn asked himself, does Passion, a lady’s perfume linger in the air at the scene of the murder.
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Amazon.com: 4.7 out of 5 stars  9 reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Charming Regency Romance 18 Mar 2014
By Shannon Leigh - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition
Maggi Andersen gives her readers a wonderfully charming Regency romance in her latest novel, Taming a Gentleman Spy, the latest addition to the Mayfair Spy series. Maggi Anderson is a master of portraying the complicated emotions of the Regency era and the societal confines on women. In love and life, Regency women must be innovative in order to circumvent the male domination of their lives and live the life they want and the love they deserve.

Taming a Gentleman Spy's Sibella is one such woman, swearing off marriage for independence but still bound by family and societal responsibilities. There is one man though who has captured her heart; John, Earl of Straithairn. John, a longtime family friend of Sibella's, is our Gentleman Spy, but Sibella does not find him an eager suitor. John has returned from war shunning the desire for a family after experiencing the devastation and loss of war.

There is no doubt that the chemistry between Sibella and John is electric and no doubt he completely returns her feelings, but he denies his them and does his best to dissuade her interest in him. So then, how is a gentile Regency woman go about getting the man she wants? Sibella struggles to make a marriage of love and not for duty. She is feisty and intelligent, but will this be enough?

Maggi Andersen is masterly skillful in describing emotion and in so doing takes her reader on a journey of love and life. Taming a Gentleman Spy is wonderfully integrated in the history of the Regency period, full of rich and complex characters, romance and a touch of intrigue combine to create a wonderfully engaging page turner leaving me wondering where is my gentleman spy anyway?
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Taming A Gentleman Spy 13 Mar 2014
By Rosemary Morris - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
Taming A Gentleman Spy

Book 2 of The Spies of Mayfair Setries

By

Maggi Anderson

“If ever beauty I did see
Which I desired, and got, ‘twas but a dream of thee.”

The Good Morrow. John Donne.

Taming A Gentleman Spy is an enthralling historical novel set in The Regency era after Napoleon has been defeated at the Battle of Waterloo and then exiled. At that time the Government feared the effect of The French Revolution and its supporters at home and abroad whose aim was to overturn law and order.

John Haldane, 4th Earl of Strathairn, a gentleman spy, returned to England after fighting the French in the Peninsula Wars and at the Battle of Waterloo. His experiences gathering information have marked him, and no one is more aware of this than Sibella, sister of the Marquess of Brandreth.

Brandreth, who has heard rumours about Strathairn’s link with the war office and the spymaster, warns Strathairn not to pay particular attention to Sibella, “…who loves home and hearth. She looks for a husband who will sit by the fire with her at night.” Brandreth doubts Strathairn could make Sibella happy.

Sibella is curious as to why Strathairn does not intend to marry in the foreseeable future. She thinks they are well-suited and his kiss thrilled her.

Strathairn will not marry Sibella because he could be killed like his partner, Nesbit, whose widow is pregnant.

On the ground, next to Nesbit’s lifeless body, lay a cravat pin in the shape of an eagle like the one favoured by Count Fornay, a dangerous revolutionary who fermented rebellion in England, and is presumed dead. “And why,” Strathairn asked himself, does Passion, a lady’s perfume linger in the air at the scene of the murder.

Urged on by her mother and brother, Sibella agrees to marry Lord Coombe in the hope that she will learn to love him. However, she is determined to discover the truth about his first wife’s death.

Maggi Anderson does not overwhelm the reader with historical facts but she does impart ‘the flavour’ of the times
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars definitely a keeper 27 Feb 2014
By katie kofemug - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition
I loved this book! The characters come on stage with wounds, bruises, laughter and longings that are slow-roasted over the fire of daily life and extraordinary events that were entirely believable. No one is a modern super-character dressed in Regency clothing, thank you Ms. Andersen! The hero and heroine are consistent with the era that produced them and are surrounded by family, friends, obligations, and anxieties that have produced their unique story.

John Haldane, Earl of Strathairn and Lady Sibella Winborne have known each other for years but not, for a refreshing change, as an excuse to rush the romance. Sibella has observed changes the battlefields of Spain left on Strathairn and resolved to enjoy nothing more than his friendship ... until he kissed her. Strathairn admits he cares for her but insists nothing will come of his feelings. He's a spy and though the war is over, there is still a need for his unique talents. So, her family discourages him from courting Sibella while warning her against hoping for Strathairn to change professions. Being cruel to be kind, he advises her to dismiss the thoughts his kiss stirred. Everyone is sensible and doing just as they ought, which is not producing the happy result expected.

Of course, romance readers will not be surprised by this.

Bemused, courted by a gentleman her family approves of, she first tries to convince Strathairn they're perfectly suited. However, she is no femme fatale and he is nobly determined. Sibella reluctantly accepts his decision and convinces herself it's better to accept the offer she has rather than waiting for an offer that will never come. Strathairn applauds her decision, even goes so far as to encourage Sibella to put aside doubts about her fiancé.

This story could have devolved in to a farce, or worse, angst ridden depression. Instead, it stayed the course; the characters developed well-enough to carry the tale.

Strathairn had valid reasons to deny himself wife and hearth. Besides facing his partner's widow, he had firsthand experience of how loved ones could be used as sources of information and pawns of revenge. Suffering from survivor's guilt, his rest was seldom undisturbed. He was haunted by the loss of comrades that received no recognition for their sacrifice, just as he has and will not. Strathairn was not able to be anyone's perfect anything while performing perfectly for his King and Country. I admired his recognition of what was inevitable even as I wanted to whisper in his ear, maybe you'll be one of the lucky ones. Wisely, he ignored me, demonstrating his depth of care for Sibella that went beyond what he wanted for the moment to what he wanted for her. His reasoning sold him as both an agent of the crown and a genuine hero. Further, the fact his love for Sibellla was only a part of the motivation to confront both his past and future instead of using her as a magik wand endeared him (and the author) to me. That he allowed Sibella time to heal, just as she had given him that same gift, made me want to sing hallelujah!

Likewise, Sibella was a woman confronting her twenty-sixth year. Considering the life expectancy of the time, she wasn't out of line feeling pressured to fish or cut bait, and yet, she hesitated because her heart insisted her desires mattered. She wanted not only a husband, but a mate - a partner, children and a family that reflected all she knew and hoped to be. Her love for her family that was so earnestly reciprocated, the way she made a place for herself while maintaining her own identity in a large family was a precious depiction of a (real) Regency woman. I was proud of her for giving Strathairn more than a couple chances to realize how excellently they would row together. I equally understood when she let those dreams go; there was only so much a woman could do - without jumping the shark. Her conflict over her doubts regarding the menace - uh fiancé were believable precisely because she knew settling for the image of her dreams would never be as wonderful as having them. Her fears that her family would dismiss her doubts wasn't a trite misunderstanding or villainy on the part of her family, it made sense in context of the situation and mores of the time.

Best of all, the secondary characters were wonderful, in their own right, in this story, as they stood. They didn't overwhelm the hero or heroine but they weren't passive, two-dimensional cut outs either. I especially adore when a mother is depicted as a genuinely caring person, foibles and all. The pacing allowed time for the characters to evolve, for the romance to mature, and the need for healing to be more than a hand wave. In the end, you have no doubt this couple will ever settle for the image of romance.

My only complaint is the book cover that I didn't see until after I wrote this review. I know sex sells, but for this book it's misleading as far as the contents within. Thank goodness for e-readers where the only thing exposed is the Scooby Doo band-aid on the scratched surface.

Reviewed for Romance Reviews Magazine - I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An Author You Do Not Want to Miss 19 Dec 2013
By ElyLibrarySec - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition
Rating: 4 1/2 stars

I received this book for review from Book Trailer Showcase and from the author. I was not compensated nor was I required to write a positive review.

In the second chapter, our author has Strathairn reading some poetry. It always makes me wonder if the author loves poetry or how they go about finding just the right quote. And Maggi is so descriptive with her scenes that she makes me feel as if I were there. But I’m also glad that I live in this century. I don’t think that I would like being prodded toward marriage to a gentleman that I didn’t love.

Maggi doesn’t make this book a straight forward historical romance either. She gives her readers some suspense and adventure to keep their attention. I’m always in awe of those authors that can write in the historical genre. While weaving their story, they also have to be historically accurate. But they also don’t want the reader to get lost in the history because they may lose interest in the real story. And this author will keep her readers in suspense almost to the very end.

She gives the reader the perfect HEA ending that will have them smiling. And it’s all done with no sex until the end. Which is perfect because I enjoyed the book without its pages being filled with sex. It would take away from the adventure of finding out what our spy is up to and will Lady Sibella find her heart match. This is the second book that I have read by this author and I can’t wait to read more.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Review by KyBunnies 13 Dec 2013
By Suzie Welker - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition
This book started off slow for me. I had to push myself to read until around 30%. After that it was easy to read and I did not want to stop.

Not fond of the book cover. Just does not seem to fit my picture of the characters or anything in the book.

I read the first book in this series and enjoyed it. I am glad I was not let down like some series.

I look forward to reading additional books by Maggi Andersen.

Thanks for an enjoyable read

The bunnies and I give this book 4 carrots.

I was given this book in exchange for an honest review. All views are my own and do not reflect those of the author, my clients or tour companies I work with. This is not a paid review. To form your own opinion please support the author and acquire your own legal copy of the book.
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