“Counterfeit Love” by Crystal Caudill
Book One in the Hidden Hearts of the Gilded Age Series
About the Book:
Can this undercover agent save the woman he loves–or is her heart as counterfeit as the money he’s been sent to track down?
After all that Grandfather has sacrificed to raise her, Theresa Plane owes it to him to save the family name–and that means clearing their debt with creditors before she marries Edward Greystone. But when one of the creditors’ threats leads her to stumble across a midnight meeting, she discovers that the money he owes isn’t all Grandfather was hiding. And the secrets he kept have now trapped Theresa in a life-threatening fight for her home–and the truth.
After months of undercover work, Secret Service operative Broderick Cosgrove is finally about to uncover the identity of the leader of a notorious counterfeiting ring. That moment of triumph turns to horror, however, when he finds undeniable proof that his former fiancée is connected. Can he really believe the woman he loved is a willing participant? Protecting Theresa and proving her innocence may destroy his career–but that’s better than failing her twice in one lifetime.
They must form a partnership, tentative though it is. But there’s no question they’re both still keeping secrets–and that lack of trust, along with the dangerous criminals out for their blood, threatens their hearts, their faith, and their very survival.
Combining rich history, danger, suspense, and romance, Crystal Caudill’s debut novel launches this new historical series with a bang. Fans of Elizabeth Camden, Michelle Griep, and Joanna Davidson Politano will be thrilled to find another author to follow!
This book was so good. Upon first seeing it, I was intrigued by the cover and title, and saw that Kregal would be publishing it, and so all those things combined were enough for me to want to give it a try. I’m so glad I did!
Counterfeit Love is the debut novel of Crystal Caudill and the author started out with quite a winner. The writing was wonderful, the plot captivating, the characters were fantastic, and the faith theme was brilliant. All checked boxes for me!
From the first page, main character Theresa Plane came to life, her personality vividly painted by the well-written words. The novel is told through two point-of-views, Theresa’s and Secret Service operative Broderick Cosgrove’s. Who is also a smashing character, by the way. ;) He was a wonderful hero, and I eagerly gathered him into the fold of book boyfriends, haha.Truly though, these characters were so alive and fun to follow, and I loved the relationships displayed throughout. The romance was so real, and deep, and sweet. The plot was engaging – there were many twists and turns, and while I had my suspicions of who the villain was (and yay I was right XD I love guessing), the dangers and mystery kept me turning the pages to find out for sure who all were involved in the counterfeit ring. What really made this book shine all the brighter for me though, was the beautiful faith strand. The message of trusting God even if – even if He doesn’t do what we want, or rescue us in the way we hoped. It was really timely for me, and blessed me deeply with the wonderful reminder. I also loved the hymn that was included – How Firm a Foundation. That is one of my favorite hymns, one I cling to frequently, so I loved seeing the characters gain hope and encouragement from it as well. I greatly look forward to the next book in the series, as well as anything this author may write. :)
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I received a copy of the novel from the publishers. I was not required to write a positive review.
About the Author:
Crystal Caudill is the author of “dangerously good historical romance,” with her work garnering awards from Romance Writers of America and ACFW.
She is a stay-at-home mom and caregiver, and when she isn’t writing, Caudill can be found playing board games with her family, drinking hot tea, or reading other great books at her home outside Cincinnati, Ohio.
Learn more at crystalcaudill.com. You can also find her on Facebook and Instagram.