Monday, January 13, 2020

Book Review: Dangerous Alliance by Jennieke Cohen

Pages: 448
Genre: YA Historical Fiction
Pub. Date: December 3, 2019
Publisher: HarperTeen
Source: Publisher for review
My Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars

Goodreads says, "Lady Victoria Aston has everything she could want: an older sister happily wed, the future of her family estate secure, and ample opportunity to while her time away in the fields around her home.  But now Vicky must marry—or find herself and her family destitute. Armed only with the wisdom she has gained from her beloved novels by Jane Austen, she enters society’s treacherous season.  Sadly, Miss Austen has little to say about Vicky’s exactcircumstances: whether the roguish Mr. Carmichael is indeed a scoundrel, if her former best friend, Tom Sherborne, is out for her dowry or for her heart, or even how to fend off the attentions of the foppish Mr. Silby, he of the unfortunate fashion sensibility.  Most unfortunately of all, Vicky’s books are silent on the topic of the mysterious accidents cropping up around her…ones that could prevent her from surviving until her wedding day."

Lady Victoria's life is turned upside down when her sister, Althea, leaves her Viscount husband and returns home.  Apparently, he isn't the nice guy the family thought he was. He is an abusive monster and she narrowly escaped his claws.  Now the pressure is on Victoria, also known as Vicky, to marry well, because if something happens to Vicky's father, Althea's dreadful husband will inherit it all.  Althea has plans to legally separate from her husband, but it's a tricky undertaking, especially for the Regency time period.  Things aren't simple for Vicky though. Strange things have been happening at her family's estate. Not only did a stranger attack her, there was also a serious accident, but thankfully, her neighbor and former friend, Tom Sherborne, helped her in both cases.  Tom has returned home after a long time overseas and now has his father's title.  Vicky's past with Tom is a complex one as he up and left their friendship five years ago without so much as a word.  Much is in store for Vicky and her family during this tumultuous time not to mention they have Viscount Dain breathing down their necks.  Dangerous Alliance by Jennieke Cohen is a charming historical read that fans of Austen will especially appreciate it.

I really liked the character of Vicky in Dangerous Alliance. She definitely was channeling an Austen heroine, such as Elizabeth Bennet, and was most definitely before her time. It's up to Vicky to save her family and I appreciated her gumption.  Her sister is in a bad place when she returns home, but Vicky definitely takes control and helps Althea get her life back together. Also, readers also some narration from Tom's point of view and this is especially helpful in understanding where Tom is coming from.  He has his own issues regarding his father's estate and inheritance. I was slow to warm up to Tom, but as the story progressed, I really liked them together.

Fans of Austen will especially appreciate Vicky's allusions to the classic novels in Dangerous Alliance.   Vicky often refers to the Austen novels to provide some guidance, which is fun, but these references might be over readers' heads unless they are quite familiar with the texts.

I couldn't quite figure out if Dangerous Alliance was a mystery, a thriller, or a historical romance. It definitely has aspects of all three genres.  The violence and the attacks just weren't thrilling enough to keep me on the edge of my seat though, but it was perfect if you are looking for something that isn't going to make you too tense.  Fans of Austen-inspired novels can add Dangerous Alliances to their list of books to read this winter.

Do you enjoy Austen-inspired stories?  What do you think of this one? Let me know in the comments below.


  1. This sounds really cute and like it has some fun twists on the genre!

    1. Absolutely! I was happy to read it over the holidays -- perfect wintertime book! Thanks for visiting, Angela!


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