The Emperor’s Conspiracy by Michelle Diener

November 19th, 2012 Kimberly Review 36 Comments

19th Nov
The Emperor’s Conspiracy by Michelle Diener
The Emperor's Conspiracy
by Michelle Diener
Series: Regency London #1
Genres: Historical Romance
Source: Publisher
Purchase*: Amazon *affiliate
Rating: One StarOne StarOne StarOne StarHalf a Star

Set in early nineteenth-century England, this vivid and romantic historical novel goes from the most elegant ballrooms of London to the city’s most tawdry slums, as a spirited young woman helps unravel a plot by Napoleon to bleed England of all its gold. Through good fortune, Charlotte Raven escaped the poverty of the London slums and is now an educated, wealthy Society lady. But she lives between two worlds, unable to completely turn her back on her old life—specifically Luke, her childhood protector and now a ruthless London crime lord. When Lord Edward Durnham is asked to investigate the alarming movement of gold out of England, his search leads him to London, and his recent acquaintance with Charlotte affords him access to a dark world he barely knew existed. As they delve deeper into the underbelly of London, danger lurks at every turn, and Charlotte must navigate between her two worlds to save England. And soon she faces a defining choice: to continue in the familiar limbo she’s lived in for years, or to take a painful and risky leap toward happiness she never thought possible

The cover drew me to The Emperor’s Conspiracy, the synopsis had me grab it and the novel captivated me. Michelle Diener’s novel has elements I love in a good book; suspense, mystery and a side dish of romance all set in nineteenth century London. I adored the unique characters and the plot against the crown. I was captivated by this tale and could not put it down.

Our heroine Charlotte Raven’s by all appearances looks to be the perfect lady with an impeccable reputation. Charlotte has many secrets and her past is one of them. Chance has her reveal her true self and befriend the sister of Lord Edward Durnham. When he begins searching for gold disappearing from England’s coiffures, he finds himself looking to Charlotte for aid. The tale that unfolds is suspenseful and mystery. I became completely immersed in this tale and its characters.

Charlotte Raven is a curious creature; she is beautiful, snarky and graceful. She is head-strong, witty, bright and very protective of those she loves. Resigned to never share her life, she is taken aback by her feelings for Lord Durnham. We see growth in her as a character throughout the novel and I really liked this complex woman. Edward is a serious bloke, burdened by family responsibilities and a diligent agent to the crown; he has little time for the social circles of the ton. He is brave, noble and smexy in his attempt to protect Charlotte. I loved how she completely unnerved him and made him lose his senses. That fact that it completely shocked him, made me giggle. Luke the local crime king-pin was an interesting and complex character. While I admired his loyalty to Charlotte, I also hated the price she paid for that loyalty. Diener provides quite a cast of side characters and each one was interesting and unique.

I love when a novel hooks you in the first few pages and that is exactly what happened with The Emperor’s Conspiracy. The fast pace, twists and fleshed out characters immediately swept me up and kept me entranced. This is one of those novels where I just had to read “one more chapter” despite the late hour and found myself up till three am! It was worth the lack of sleep as I found the mystery and tale to be delightful. Diener took true historical facts about Napoleon and his plans to take down England’s economy and wove them into this tale. At times it was very dark and gritty and the suspense was unnerving as the author blurred the lines of fiction and reality. I love when a tale and its characters become real to me. The romance was sweet, complex and totally takes a back-burner to the intense plot. The ending allows the reader to draw their own conclusions and I closed the book with a smile.

I so recommend The Emperor’s Conspiracy to fans of mystery and suspense in a historical setting. Not sure you like historical fiction, but love mysteries, crime novels and suspense? I recommend you try this since the pacing is riveting. I look forward to reading more from this talented author. You can find all of Michelle Diener’s works listed here.

Copyright (c) 2011-2013 Caffeinated Book Reviewer
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About Kimberly
Kimberly is a coffee loving book addict who reads and listens to fictional stories in all genres. Whovian, Ravenclaw, Howler and proud Nonna. She owns and manages Caffeinated PR. The coffee is always on and she is ready to chat. Twitter | Facebook | Instagram

36 Responses to “The Emperor’s Conspiracy by Michelle Diener”

  1. Jenny

    Ooooo yes! I too love when a book has me repeating a mantra of “just one more chapter” – I keep saying that right up until it’s about 3am and I physically can’t keep my eyes open any longer:) The cover of this book is stunning, I’m so glad the story behind it is equally brilliant. Beautiful review!

  2. thegeekyblogger

    DUDE! I just finished a book that kept me up to late—those are the freaking best kind of books. I am so glad that this one was one of those for you 🙂 Also I want that dress on the cover for a costume ball–wouldn’t it be epic!

  3. Christa

    I love really fast paced historical fiction! Can’t wait to read The Emperor’s Conspiracy!

  4. Maja (The Nocturnal Library)

    Color me intrigued! I’m one of those people who usually run the other way when someone mentions historical romance, but like you, I could never resist such a beautiful cover. Plus, if it HAS to be historical, 19th century London sounds like the best choice. Mystery, suspense, romance, what’s not to like?
    Great review!

  5. kindlemom1

    Being the cover whore that I seem to be, I love the cover on this! It sounds like something I would really love. It has been awhile since I read a really good historical.

    I am glad you enjoyed this one so much.

  6. Dar(Peeking Between the Pages)

    I’m going to be starting this one this week so I really just wanted to see if you liked it and I’m glad to see you did. That cover really is gorgeous and I’m anxious to get started on the book now!

  7. Heidi

    I was just looking at this book yesterday when I was putting together Friday Forecast and I thought you had it. I think it sounds wonderful, I love the cover and that it is a good historical mystery! I love a good mystery no matter the period!

  8. Christy (Love of Books)

    I really do love this cover. And Charlotte sounds like the kind of character I love. I think this will be high on my list for when I finally squeeze in a historical romance.

  9. Andrea

    What a stunning cover. Just gorgeous. I love a good historical fiction and this one seems perfect. Thank you for the lovely review!

  10. Diana Leigh

    I’m so glad to hear you enjoyed this book! I’m reading it for a book tour next month. The history/mystery combo is one of my favorites!

  11. Amber Elise

    This sounds like everything I would LOVE. I’m a sucker for historical fiction mysteries. Also, that cover…so pretty! Thanks for bringing this book to my attention, I’m happy you really enjoyed it!

    Amber Elise @ Du Livre

  12. Jennifer Bielman

    You know it’s a great book when you stay up late and just can’t it down. I love 19th century London books. They are my guilty pleasure.

  13. Michelle

    I love a good mystery and suspense. The cover of this one is so pretty too. I’m not sure why I like it so much, it just seems to work. This book is def going on my tbr.

    Great review!

    Michelle @ Book Briefs