Rosemary Gresham has no family beyond the band of former urchins who helped her survive as a girl in the mean streets of London. Grown now, they are no longer pickpockets–instead they focus on high value items and have learned how to blend into upper-class society. Rosemary is beginning to question whether she can continue in this life when she’s offered the challenge of a lifetime–determine whether a certain wealthy gentleman is loyal to Britain or to Germany. After all how does one steal a family’s history, their very name?
(excerpt from back of book)
Roseanna M. White is one of those authors that makes my eyes light up when I see a new release. While I'm still relatively new to her works, they have yet to disappoint and in the case of A Name Unknown continue to reach new heights.
First and foremost plot (we'll get to characters later). I love how White builds and weaves her plot lines. This book has spunk and managed to keep me guessing until the very end (the plot twist, oh the wonderful plot twists). White doesn't skip on the adventure in this novel as readers are taken through spies and intrigue, village distrust, and spiritual questioning as her characters attempt to navigate a world on the brink of change and war. White's ability to bring trivia to life in her plots is a wonderful device that certainly helped bring this reader along as the plot does establish itself rather slowly in the early chapters. In hindsight, for those who push through the slower chapters, they'll find themselves rewarded with a well paced novel the speed reflecting the slow build and wait of the political events surrounding our characters with very personal trials.
Which brings us to our characters, I loved the main duo White brings to life here. Peter is an amazing hero in his unassuming ways. The fact that White chooses to highlight a character with a speech impediment was pretty exciting as representation is awesome. That said, I just loved how instead of the swashbuckling hero we find in Peter's imagination readers see the less often championed strength of quiet courage and moral strength.
Adding to this delightful change, instead of a whimsical or demure heroine we get spunky Rosemary, a thief on the road to a different life either through the next score or spiritual journeying. Her honest frustrations, willingness to throw a punch, and genuine love for those who were granted entrance into her heart made for a refreshing and energizing counterbalance to Peter.
It goes without saying Shadows of England is definitely a series to be watching and A Name Unknown brings a solid foundation and high expectations for book 2.
4.5 out of 5 stars
"Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc."