Monday, October 15, 2012

Book Review - Love in Disguise by Carol Cox

Can she solve the crime before they uncover her true identity?

Jobless and down to her last dime, Ellie Moore hears about a position with the Pinkerton Detective Agency and believes it's the perfect chance to put her acting skills and costumes to use. Reluctantly, the agency agrees to give her one assignment, one chance to prove herself. Disguised as Lavinia Stewart, a middle-aged widow, Ellie travels to Arizona to begin her investigation. When the need arises, she also transforms into the dazzling Jessie Monroe, whose vivacious personality encourages people to talk.

Mine owner Steven Pierce is going to lose his business if he can't figure out who's stealing his silver shipments. In his wildest dreams, he never expected to receive help from a gray-haired widow...or to fall in love with her beautiful niece.

Then the thieves come after Lavinia and Jessie. Ellie isn't safe no matter which character she plays! Should she give up and reveal her true identity? What will Steven do when he realizes the woman he's falling in love with doesn't really exist?

Spunky, Feisty, Determined.  Three good adjectives to describe main character, Ellie Moore.  Insecure, Stubborn, Desperate.  Also three good adjectives to describe Ellie.

Author, Carol Cox, did an excellent job in creating the character, Ellie Moore.  Ellie is someone who desperately wants to be acknowledged for being good at something.  She has always been in the background, but desperately wants to stand out.  Some people are comfortable being in the background and never being noticed.  Ellie is comfortable in the background, but longs to be able to come forward and have someone say she has something, but she doesn't think she has anything worth noticing.

The story, itself, was somewhat slow for me; however, I did enjoy the book. The story is solid.  The descriptions are quite good, and I did like the characters.  It was easy to figure out the plot and the twists in the story, so I focused more on the main character.  It was fascinating to see her adapt from a large city like Chicago to a small town in Arizona where everyone is usually in everyone's business.  I also liked the side character of little Billy Taylor, the boy who would be a spy.  I think we now know how James West the character from "Wild, Wild West" might have gotten his start.

Although this is not a two-reader for me, it is definitely a book I will pass along to my friends and recommend.  I look forward to more novels from Carol Cox.

Thank you to Bethany House Publishers' Book Review Program for providing me this book free of charge.

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