Review/Giveaway: Maid of Secrets by Jennifer McGowan
Today I am excited to be a stop on the Maid of Secrets tour hosted by Sel @ Bookcase to Heaven. Enjoy my review and author spotlight and be sure and enter to win a copy for yourself!
Maid of Secrets
by Jennifer McGowan
Series: Maids of Honor #1
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Publication date: May 7, 2013
Genre: YA Historical
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ARC provided in exchange for unbiased review
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In this breathtaking start to a series, a secret society of young women make up Elizabeth I’s most trusted royal guard. God Save the Queen—or the Maids will. Orphan Meg Fellowes makes her living picking pockets—until she steals from the wrong nobleman. Instead of rotting in prison like she expected, she’s whisked away to the court of Queen Elizabeth and pressed into royal service, where she joins four other remarkable girls in the Maids of Honor, the Queen’s secret society of protectors. Meg’s natural abilities as a spy prove useful in this time of unrest. The Spanish Court is visiting, and with them come devious plots and hidden political motives. As threats to the kingdom begin to mount, Meg can’t deny her growing attraction to one of the dashing Spanish courtiers. But it’s hard to trust her heart in a place where royal formalities and masked balls hide the truth: Not everyone is who they appear to be. With danger lurking around every corner, can she stay alive—and protect the crown?I have always been intrigued by Elizabeth’s court and her maids of honor and ladies in waiting. Mix in spies, orphans, intrigued and suspense and I could not wait to start Maid of Secrets the first book in Jennifer McGowan’s Maid of Honor series. I quickly became swept up in this exciting tale with its fleshed out characters.
When we first meet Meg, she is confident and sure of herself and ambitious to improve her places within the traveling troupe, she is also very protective of them. I really took a liking to Meg, she is bright, intuitive, and despite obstacles she does not whine and looks for ways to improve her position. The Queen accuses her of not knowing who she is and watching Meg transform and find herself was fascinating. The other maids of honor are Beatrice, Jane, Sophia and Anna. They have unique personalities, and desires. They nickname Meg the “rat” and she finds herself without friends. Slowly they become friends and watching all of the bickering, back stabbing and jockeying for position within the court had me both giggling and annoyed. Meg refers to them as; The Seer, The Scholar, the Belle and the Blade. The queen’s men in charge of the maids Cecil and Walsingham like their positions and manipulate the girls. I loathed them and also questioned their loyalties which kept things suspenseful. Rafe is smexy and a courtier to the Spanish court. The interaction between Rafe and Meg was exciting. Their banter and the complicated tango they danced felt genuine. From the beginning there is an attraction but Meg is set to spy on him and ooh-la-la I loved the thread they shared. Elizabeth was portrayed as strong, intelligent and suspicious. The men think her a fool because she is a woman, but I think they are sadly mistaken.
Jennifer McGowan writes Young Adult romance full of swash and buckle. Her first novel, MAID OF SECRETS, debuts in Spring, 2013 from Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers.About the Author