cover image The Counterfeit Mistress

The Counterfeit Mistress

Madeline Hunter. Jove, $7.99 mass market (368p) ISBN 978-0-515-15138-1

Bestseller Hunter (The Conquest of Lady Cassandra) stumbles with this passionless historical tale of an English spy-hunter and a young woman who’s determined to rescue her father from French revolutionaries and bring his nemesis to justice. Former soldier Gavin Norwood, Viscount Kendale, has been following Marielle Lyon for over a year, trying to gather proof that she’s a French spy. When she’s attacked in an alley, he comes to her rescue and is forced to admit his interest is personal as well as professional. Marielle isn’t above using his obvious lust against him, especially if it will help her bring down the evil Antoine Lamberte, who had her father arrested and is still hunting her in France. The plot drags and the story offers few surprises, as all loose ends are eventually wrapped up with minimal effort. Despite the attention to period detail, even Hunter’s most ardent fans may have trouble staying awake through this lackluster story. Agent: Pam Hopkins, Hopkins Literary Associates. (Oct.)