“We each play several roles in life – that doesn’t make them all lies.”
Synopsis: Strong-willed Sage Fowler does not want to be married to someone she doesn’t love and has other plans about the way her life will go. When her uncle sets up an interview with the matchmaker in hopes of marrying her off to a wealthy family, it goes horrendously wrong and Sage is deemed unfit to marry, which is quite alright with her. Deciding to take Sage under her wing and make her an apprentice, the matchmaker, Mistress Rodelle, tasks Sage with the responsibility of setting up other young ladies into marriages for political alliances.
Alexander Quinn is a newly promoted Captain and after a failed scouting mission, Quinn’s father, the General, sees the perfect opportunity in teaching Alexander patience by tasking him with escorting a handful of ladies to the politically important matchmaking summit of the year. When Alexander learns of his new mission, he feels it is not a good use of his time but takes his new mission seriously in hopes of pleasing his father. Intent on learning all he can about who he is traveling with, Captain Quinn sends Ash Carter to spy on the girls whilst pretending to be a carriage driver so as to remain under the radar. Sage is also being used by Mistress Rodelle to spy on the ladies and to spy on the soldiers accompanying them in hopes of learning any pertinent information for future matchmaking.
When the Captain finds out about Sage’s role with the ladies and her uncanny ability at deciphering truths, he decides to use her role among the women as an opportunity to gain information. With a political unrest growing, Sage finds herself right in the middle of a dangerous balancing act that will determine the fate of her kingdom.
What a great book! (And what a great cover!) I loved Sage and her feisty, witty, temperamental character and the slow-build relationship between her and Ash. And Oh. My. God. That plot twist got me good! I was sitting there thinking “wow why do I feel like I keep missing something important here?” and then BOOM! Plot twist slapped me right in the face and I felt pretty dumb for not catching it sooner. I love a good plot twist🤷 All the characters and the world they live in are built up so intricately it feels like you personally know each and every one and are right there with them. There is a great villain who you can’t help but truly hate (especially at the end, grrrrr ☹) I am eagerly awaiting the second book to get here so I can find out what happens next in our heroine’s journey!