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Book Review: A Dangerous Collaboration

A Dangerous Collaboration by Deanna Raybourn
Genre: mystery, historical, thriller
Publisher: Berkley
Date: March 12, 2019

Veronica Speedwell is rarely confused and she’s never, ever unsure of her next move. She’s a woman who can size up the undercurrents in a room immediately and she is always keenly aware of the part she plays in any particular situation. As such, she keeps her emotions on tight lockdown.

But when it comes to Stoker Templeton-Vane, that all tends to go out the window. As their friendship has deepened, so have Veronica’s feelings and she isn’t quite sure what to do with them. This tends to mess with her control more than just a little bit. Now throw in yet another distraction in the form of Stoker’s brother, Lord Templeton-Vane, and Veronica is in quite the dilemma.

Struggling with her feelings for Stoker, Veronica decides that she needs to get away.  So when Stoker’s brother arrives with an invitation to join him on a visit to an old college chum, it’s a perfect chance to break away for a little bit. They will need to playact a bit as this friend, Malcolm Romilly, is quite conservative. So Veronica agrees to pretend to be his fiancée, a deception she fully intended to keep from Stoker.

Unfortunately, upon arrival on the island, the entire plan is thrown into disarray as Stoker shocks them with his presence. Not willing to be left behind while the two of them ventured off without them, Stoker wasted no time in setting up his surprise trip.  This, of course, levels up the tension between the three of them to previously unknown heights.

When Veronica discovers this isn’t just a casual visit to an old friend, she finds a way to put the tensions and feelings aside and dives full force into the mystery. Romilly, it seems, is looking for the key to what happened to his bride. She disappeared without a trace on their wedding day.

This mystery, like the others in the series, is full of danger, intrigue, lies, deception and always contains a tightly constrained level of passion between Stoker and Speedwell. However in this book, it’s not nearly as contained and it steps into the spotlight to take a starring role. This doesn’t mean that it takes anything away from the mystery, but it ups the level of engagement significantly.  I love Speedwell anyway and adding this dynamic in really made it a lot more fun to read.

I loved this outing. I mean I really loved it. I devoured it nearly overnight and when I was done, I found myself in the midst of a book hangover of epic proportions. I was eagerly researching when the next book would come out, only to remember I’d gotten this one PRIOR to release. Talk about frustration!

If you love mysteries, history, and intrigue, you definitely need to give these books a try!