Book Review: The Secret of the India Orchid by Nancy Campbell Allen

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This book was rich with history, intrigue, and sweet romance! It's interesting as a Christian novel, because I think it's one that touches on another religion with so much feeling and knowledge that you get to see perspectives that aren't typically acknowledged in the average inspirational romance. Being the first book I have read with the setting in India during the British occupation, I found myself engaged not just with my heart but also with my history-loving mind. Anthony Blake, the Earl of Wilshire, is on a mission to recover stolen documents which endanger the security of government operatives and their families. Two years ago, he was forced to say goodbye to his love, Sophia Elliot, who he was going to begin formally courting on the evening he was assigned his mission. Now they both find themselves in India - one to find a thief and the other to escape the heartbreak in England. Sophia has been desperately trying to get over Anthony for two years, but she has been unable to get past the letter he sent her dissolving their friendship. Both angry and sad, she has no idea what to make of Anthony's sudden reappearance in her life, let alone the mixed signals she gets whenever they are in the same room together. When Anthony's mission collides with Sophia's safety, they join forces to find the thief before he escapes again. I loved every aspect of this book! From the richness of life in India during that time to the interactions between the characters, I was thoroughly engaged the entire time. The author does a splendid job of not only making sure the reader understands the cultural differences between Indians and the British, but she also creates empathy in the reader and a genuine eagerness to learn more. Sophia and Anthony were amazing as well. Anthony was a romantic who had to battle his desire to be with Sophia in order to keep her safe, and Sophia was torn between making him pay for the heartbreak he caused and learning what caused the spark in his eye whenever she mentioned their past friendship. I especially enjoyed the art of flower language that the author introduced to the story, which enriched their relationship further. I highly recommend this book to anyone who loves history and suspenseful romantic novels! I look forward to reading more books by this author soon. She has a true talent for drawing a reader in and never letting go. **I received a free copy via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.**

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