Review: The Passion of the Purple Plumeria by Lauren Willig

Description (from cover):

‘Lauren Willig’s Pink Carnation novels have been hailed as ‘sheer fun’ and ‘charming.’ Now she takes readers on an adventure filled with hidden treasure and a devilishly handsome English colonel…
Colonel William Reid has returned home from India to retire near his children, who are safely stowed at an academy in Bath. Upon his return to the Isles, however, he finds that one of his daughters has vanished, along with one of her classmates.
Because she served as second-in-command to the Pink Carnation, one of England’s most intrepid spies, it would be impossible for Gwendolyn Meadows to give up the intrigue of Paris for a quiet life in the English countryside–especially when she’s just overheard news of an alliance forming between Napoleon and an Ottoman Sultan. But when the Pink Carnation’s little sister goes missing from her English boarding school, Gwen reluctantly returns home to investigate the girl’s disappearance.
Thrown together by circumstances, Gwen and William must cooperate to track down the young ladies before others with nefarious intent get their hands on them. But Gwen’s partnership with quick-tongued, roguish William may prove to be even more of an adventure for her than finding the lost girls…’

My thoughts:

Every once in a while, a reader likes to enjoy a ‘fluff’ read just for the heck of it. This is my guilty pleasure. I absolutely adore the Pink Carnation series by Lauren Willig and while it’s not considered by any means to be great literature, it hits the spot. I enjoy this series because of the characters and the way the author weaves stories together featuring many previous characters from previous novels. While this one was most definitely not my favorite or by far the best in the series, it still was fun reading. I know that when I read a Lauren Willig book, I will be amused to no end. 
This book features the impervious Miss Gwen and while it’s hard to imagine Miss Gwen being a romantic, it was an interesting read. This one does not feature the cloak and dagger plot that the previous books incorporate and that was a little disappointing. This one focuses more on the romance of Miss Gwen and Colonel Reid. While it was fun to see Miss Gwen in a different light, this book fell a little flat compared to its predecessors. No edge of the seat plot twists or scrumptious spy activities in this one, so if you’re looking for that, prepare to be disappointed. There was one little surprise in this book that caught me off guard a little.
Definitely, a fun and engaging read if you’re not looking for something overly stimulating and want to read something light for leisure. I think that lovers of this series will appreciate this novel so much more than others because it features Miss Gwen. If you haven’t read the previous books in this series or been invested since book one, it will probably be hard for you to find this one amusing. I did love the little interviews at the end of this book between the author and Miss Gwen and found those to be more amusing than the book itself. I love Miss Gwen’s personality and sure fire wit. The teaser for Pink XI looks to be promising and of course I can’t wait to indulge my guilty reading pleasure when it comes out in the Summer of 2014.

Overall Rating: 3

Title:  The Passion of the Purple Plumeria
Author:  Lauren Willig
Series:  Pink Carnation #10
Publisher:  NAL Trade
Publication Date:  August 6, 2013
Pages:  480
Genre:  Historical Fiction
Get It:  Amazon; Barnes & Noble

Disclaimer: This book was purchased by myself and I reviewed this book without compensation of any kind. All thoughts and opinions are solely mine.

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