Published by Putnam on April 21, 2015
Genres: Historical Mystery, Romantic suspense
Source: the library
Also by this author: Crystal Gardens, The Mystery Woman, Otherwise Engaged, 'Til Death Do Us Part, The Girl Who Knew Too Much, With This Ring, Rendezvous, Affair, Tightrope
The Kern Secretarial Agency provides reliable professional services to its wealthy clientele, and Anne Clifton was one of the finest women in Ursula Kern’s employ. But Miss Clifton has met an untimely end—and Ursula is convinced it was not due to natural causes.
Archaeologist and adventurer Slater Roxton thinks Mrs. Kern is off her head to meddle in such dangerous business. Nevertheless, he seems sensible enough to Ursula, though she does find herself unnerved by his self-possession and unreadable green-gold eyes…
If this mysterious widowed beauty insists on stirring the pot, Slater intends to remain close by as they venture into the dark side of polite society. Together they must reveal the identity of a killer—and to achieve their goal they may need to reveal their deepest secrets to each other as well…
Amanda Quick’s books are like candy bars for me – delicious, irresistible, and quickly devoured. Garden of Lies is no exception. The main characters, Slater Roxton and Ursula Kern, are enjoyable, but also familiar to anyone who has read many of Krentz/Quick’s books: Slater is strong, decisive, protective, even a bit overbearing; Ursula is independent, determined, and fully capable of standing up to him.
The plot of this book seemed a little… I’m not sure how to describe it. Not quite as tight and well-laid-out as usual, perhaps? Both Slater and Ursula have secrets in their pasts, but in the end, those secrets don’t have much to do with the present mystery. And while the various pieces of the actual mystery tie together in the end, the flow and fit don’t feel quite as natural or compelling as in most of Quick’s books. Don’t get me wrong — I thoroughly enjoyed reading it, but it’s not a book that lingers in my mind. Call it a fluffy Three Musketeers bar, rather than a rich, deep Ghiradelli.