About the Book
Book: Reclaiming the Spy
Author: Lorri Dudley
Genre: Christian Historical Romance
Release Date: August 29, 2023
How can he protect her from himself when she keeps winding up in his arms?
She never gave up hope. After ten years of prayers for her husband, presumed dead in the Peninsula Wars, Abigail Emerson is shocked to discover him alive. Yet what should be the happily ever after of fairy tales becomes a nightmare when he coldly instructs her to forget she’d ever seen him. Abigail refuses to let her beloved slip through her fingers again, and she’s willing to battle for his love, despite the walls he’s created to barricade his heart.
Nicholas Emerson’s time as a spy for the War Office has left physical and mental battle wounds. He can never be the charming, carefree man he once was—the man his wife deserves—but when a threat to Abby’s life returns him to their small Midland village, keeping her safe proves more challenging than expected. If only Abby would forget him and remarry, then he wouldn’t have to face the torment of all the tender, buried feelings she evokes. The consequence of his life as a spy means he can never have her again…
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After reading the first book in the series, Revealing the Truth, I needed to know more about Abby’s story and her husband, proclaimed dead, but she believed was still alive. I was incredibly excited when this book came out and just had to read it.
While there was much about this book I liked, I was left with mixed emotions. I loved being able to learn more about Abby and Nick’s love story, to be able to meet Nick and journey with the both of them through their reunion and the trials that followed. The author does a great job pulling on the reader’s emotions, ensuring that he or she keeps turning the pages. I also appreciated how Dudley did not sugarcoat the hardship of war and the effects it can leave on a person. Nick is damaged, both physically and mentally, and it’s what makes it difficult for him to stay in Abby’s life.
I’m going to be honest, however, there are a few aspects of the novel that keep it from being my favorite Lorri Dudley book that I have read. First and foremost, there were a couple subplots within the book that I felt were resolved too quickly. I would have loved to see them unfold more. I think it would’ve made the story that much more interesting. There is one especially that I can’t say because it would spoil the story, but there were big issues that one of the main characters struggled with that I felt Dudley just put a band-aid over and it disappointed me.
Overall, however, I recommend this novel to those who enjoy historical romance.
I had received a copy of the book as part of the Celebrate Lit Blogging Team and was required to give an honest review.
About the Author
Lorri Dudley has been a finalist in numerous writing contests and has a master’s degree in Psychology. She lives in Ashland, Massachusetts with her husband and three teenage sons, where writing romance allows her an escape from her testosterone filled household. Find her online at www.lorridudley.com.
More from Lorri
When writing stories, I delve into research to provide the best experience for my readers, hoping to transport them to another time and setting, in this case, the lush green rolling hills of England’s Cotswolds at the end of the Napoleonic Wars. However, God had an alternative plan for me during my research and writing of Reclaiming the Spy. To prepare for the beginning scene with Mama Em, I read Glimpses of Heaven by Trudy Harris, RN. Trudy Harris was a hospice nurse and wrote about her clients in their final days. I’ve never sobbed through every book chapter quite like I had this one. At the same time, I was encouraged to hear how many of her patients heard glorious music, observed beautiful scenes, had visions of past friends or family members, witnessed angels, or even saw their Savior, Jesus Christ.
I didn’t realize that God was preparing me through my research for my dad to go into hospice care. In his final stages, my dad spoke of seeing his parents in vivid dreams, and thanks to reading about similar situations in Glimpses of Heaven, I know they were waiting to welcome him into heaven. I’m so grateful for how God readied my heart, and I was able to draw comfort in seeing how He blurs the lines of this realm and the next to make for an easier transition. God is good all the time, and I felt his presence beside me the entire way.
I’d initially titled my manuscript Love Never Fails because Abby and Nicholas struggle to learn the qualities of love from 1 Corinthians 13, “Love is patient, love is kind… love believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.” Nicholas’s debilitating spells and nightmares after serving as a spy in the Napoleonic Wars cause him to fear Bedlam and that he may hurt Abby. Post-traumatic stress disorder wasn’t a mental health diagnosis of the early 1800s, but it did exist. Mental hospitals (or madhouses) were frightening places where inmates were often treated like zoo animals. Spectators would come for enjoyment to stare and laugh at the men and women housed there.
While my parents didn’t have a wartime story like Abby and Nicholas, they shared a love that endured through good and bad times and celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary this past year. The last few days my dad was alive, he sang Amazing Grace and to my mom a Doris Day song, I Love You a Bushel and a Peck. They shared a love that never failed, and that is the love I hoped to convey through Abby and Nicholas’s story.
Alena Mentink, August 30
lalkesidelivingsite, August 30
Melissa’s Bookshelf, August 31
Connie’s History Classroom, August 31
Betti Mace, September 1
Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, September 2
Happily Managing a Household of Boys, September 2
She Lives To Read, September 3
Texas Book-aholic, September 4
Sylvan Musings, September 4
Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, September 5
Locks, Hooks and Books, September 6
The Book Club Network, September 7
Becca Hope: Book Obsessed, September 7
Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, September 8
Books You Can Feel Good About, September 8
For Him and My Family, September 9
Lily’s Book Reviews, September 10
Christina’s Corner, September 10
Book Looks by Lisa, September 11
Cover Lover Book Review, September 11
Gina Holder, Author and Blogger, September 12 (Author Interview)
Pause for Tales, September 12
Holly’s Book Corner, September 13
To celebrate her tour, Lorri is giving away the grand prize of a $50 Amazon Gift Card!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.