Susanna and the Spy is an engaging historical novel that combines two of my favorite themes – mystery and romance. Like my recent favorite The Secret Life of Miss Anna Marsh, this book is thrilling and comforting at the same time, with just enough suspense to keep you from dozing off into dreamland.
Susanna Ward is living a hard life. raised in luxury by her noble father, she has faced the shock of finding herself penniless and all alone after his untimely death. Now she is reduced to working as a governess, and is looking for a new post. On her way back to London, a chance encounter brings her face to face with an old gardener from her father’s family estate. The gardener insists that her grandfather was murdered and implores her to set things right. Intrigued and at a loose end, Susanna decides to stop in the small village near her grandfather’s estate. Estranged from her father’s family, Susanna has no idea if they will even agree to see her, but she takes the chance.
Before Susanna can meet her family, she comes face to face with an injured stranger who rushes into her room. Unwittingly, she protects him from the men who are looking for him. The next day brings shocking news that the old gardener is found murdered, strengthening Susuanna’s resolve to get to the bottom of the mystery. An eager invitation from her uncle sees Susanna living amidst her family. Some gossip with the maid makes her realize that she had met none other than Captain Clark, the ring leader of a local gang of smugglers who the English Army is trying hard to capture. A portly uncle, sour faced cousin, amorous aunt, vicar uncle – Susanna is trying to get acquainted with her new found family. She also runs into the mysterious Captain Clark who continues to evade capture.
Does Susanna manage to solve the mystery surrounding her grandfather’s death? Is Captain Clark guilty, or is her family involved in some sinister plot? You will have to read Susanna and the Spy to find out more.