Roseanna M. White’s writing soars to new heights in her latest release, A Beautiful Disguise, the first installment of The Imposters series.
This dazzling book transports readers to Edwardian England, blending acrobats, circuses, spying, romance, fashion, and faith into a mesmerizing tale that is impossible to put down.
“Just like a lion, they could put on a show of docility and domesticity, but threaten one’s family and the roar would spring forth.” ~ Roseanna M. White
Synopsis: In Edwardian London, not all that glitters is gold as a lady and an intelligence officer’s secret mission take them from the city’s dazzling ballrooms to its covert intelligence offices.
Sir Merritt Livingstone has spent a decade serving the monarch in the field, but when pneumonia lands him behind a desk in the War Office Intelligence Division just as they’re creating a new secret intelligence branch, he’s intent on showing his worth. He suspects an aristocrat of leaking information to Germany as tensions mount between the two countries, but he needs someone to help him prove it, so he turns to The Imposters, Ltd. No one knows who they are, but their results are beyond compare.
Left with an estate on the brink of bankruptcy after their father’s death, Lady Marigold Fairfax and her brother open a private investigation firm for the elite to spy on the elite. Dubbed The Imposters, Ltd., their anonymous group soon becomes the go-to for the crème of society who want answers delivered surreptitiously. But the many secrets Marigold learns about her peers pale in comparison to her shock when she and her brother are hired to investigate her best friend’s father as a potential traitor.
Lady Marigold is determined to discover the truth for her friend’s sake, and she’s more determined still to keep her heart from getting involved with this enigmatic new client … who can’t possibly be as noble as he seems.
“The truth isn’t always pretty. But I like to think it’s always beautiful.” ~ Roseanna M. White
A Beautiful Disguise was — for lack of a better word — a beautiful surprise! From the moment I opened this novel until I flipped to the last page, its unique premise held me captive. I loved how Roseanna M. White incorporated elements that wouldn’t usually go together to create the perfect balance. From lions as pets to a thrilling mission, there was so much happening in this story, but in all the right ways!
The characters were a true delight. Marigold, Yates, and Merritt were wonderfully crafted, each with individual qualities and captivating perspectives. Reading their point of view allowed me to get to know who they were and appreciate their sincerity, talents, faith, and innovative thinking. The chemistry between Merritt and Marigold was palpable, and Yate’s perspective added a layer of intrigue and depth I look forward to exploring throughout this series.
“Maybe we’d all be wiser, maybe fewer people would be hurt, if we questioned more. If we didn’t think that closing our eyes to darkness meant it didn’t exist. As if by closing them, we didn’t just create more darkness.” ~ Roseanna M. White
Roseanna M. White’s storytelling prowess was fully displayed in A Beautiful Disguise. Her vivid and realistic narrative brought Edwardian England to life, effortlessly weaving fact and fiction in a glimpse of the early days of espionage before MI5 and MI6 were established.
While the ending leaves you craving more, with tantalizing cliffhangers and hints of tension among the other Imposter members, I wish the last two chapters weren’t so rushed after the final reveal. Nonetheless, A Beautiful Disguise is an excellent summer read that will transport you to the beach or seaside, evoking the desire to savor a good book while breathing in the salty air.
*Thank you, NetGalley and the publisher, for providing me with a pre-release copy of this novel. All thoughts and opinions are entirely my own.*
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