'But if modern manhood had let me down, at least the past boasted brighter specimens. To wit, the Scarlet Pimpernel, the Purple Gentian and the Pink Carnation, that dashing trio of spies who kept Napoleon in a froth of rage and the feminine population of England in another sort of froth entirely'. Modern-day student Eloise Kelly has achieved a ...
'But if modern manhood had let me down, at least the past boasted brighter specimens. To wit, the Scarlet Pimpernel, the Purple Gentian and the Pink Carnation, that dashing trio of spies who kept Napoleon in a froth of rage and the feminine population of England in another sort of froth entirely'. Modern-day student Eloise Kelly has achieved a great academic coup by unmasking the elusive spy the Pink Carnation, who saved England from Napoleon. But now she has a million questions about the Carnation's deadly nemesis, the Black Tulip. And she's pretty sure that her handsome on-again, off-again crush Colin Selwick has the answers somewhere in his family's archives. While searching through Lady Henrietta's old letters and diaries from 1803, Eloise stumbles across an old codebook and discovers something more exciting than she ever imagined: Henrietta and her old friend Miles Dorrington were on the trail of the Black Tulip and had every intention of stopping him in his endeavour to kill the Pink Carnation. But what they didn't know was that while they were trying to find the Tulip - and trying not to fall in love in the process - the Black Tulip was watching them.
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Publishers Weekly, 2005-10-31 Willig picks up where she left readers breathlessly hanging with 2005's The Secret History of the Pink Carnation. After discovering the identity of the Pink Carnation, one of England's most successful spies during the Napoleonic wars, modern-day graduate student Eloise Kelly is hot on the trail of the Black Tulip, the Pink Carnation's French counterpart. While researching the archives of dashing-but-grumpy Colin Selwick (a descendant of the Selwick spy family), Eloise learns that spy Purple Gentian (Richard Selwick) safely retired to the countryside; meanwhile, the Pink Carnation continues her mission with the help of Richard's younger sister. Spirited Henrietta Selwick discovers that the Black Tulip has resurfaced after a 10-year silence with the intent of eliminating the Pink Carnation. Miles Dorrington (Richard's best friend) works for the War Office and is directed to unearth the deadly spy. As he and Henrietta investigate, they try to deny their attraction for each other-and avoid becoming the Black Tulip's next victims. Hero and heroine can be quite silly, and there are overlong ballroom shenanigans aplenty; like last time, Eloise and Colin's will-they-won't-they dance isn't nearly as interesting as what takes place in 1803. No matter. Willig knows her audience; Regency purists may gnash their teeth in frustration, but many more will delight in this easy-to-read romp and line up for the next installment. (Jan.) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
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