Book Review: The Spice King by Elizabeth Camden

About the Book

Gray Delacroix has dedicated his life to building his very successful global spice empire, but it has come at a cost. Resolved to salvage his family before it spirals out of control, he returns to his ancestral home to save his brother and sister before it’s too late.

As a junior botanist for the Smithsonian, Annabelle Larkin has been charged with the impossible task of gaining access to the notoriously private Delacroix plant collection. If she fails, she will be out of a job and the family farm in Kansas will go under. She has no idea that in gaining entrance to the Delacroix world, she will unwittingly step into a web of dangerous political intrigue far beyond her experience.

Unable to deny her attraction to the reclusive business tycoon, Annabelle will be forced to choose between her heart and loyalty to her country. Can Gray and Annabelle find a way through the storm of scandal without destroying the family Gray is fighting to save?

My Review

I’ve been excited to read this book since I knew of it even though I don’t have time help me because it’s by Elizabeth Camden and I loVe her books!! (See my review of her other books here and here). This was a part of a new series (Hope and Glory, versus the Empire State series), so I was excited to meet new characters and get into a new setting.

Overall, I still like the Empire State series more than this series (at least so far), but my favorite part of Camden’s books, the STEM focused young women who are also feminine and have emotion, was still present!

I really enjoyed the historical setting of this book: in the very early 1900s, which was when America was really coming into its own; corporations were booming and inventions were coming out left and right. Although I don’t know much about it, that period of history is FASCINATING to me! I loved reading about that time period and seeing where everything came from. 🙂 As someone who doesn’t know a ton about the food industry, this book was also really interesting and a good way to learn more about it, and its origins.

In terms of the story, it was a good story and I really enjoyed it: it was action packed, but never boring, but which made it feel a little long at times. There were SO MANY twists and turns that it was never dull, and all of it was interesting to read about! The chemistry between Annabelle and Gray was AMAZING: I don’t think I’ve read a book where the two main characters connected so well! Annabelle is smart and witty and resilient, and Gray is thoughtful and smart and calculating but also sweet. Their siblings were also so fun to read about (and there are hints of Caroline and Luke having their own books!!! eeek!!), and Annabelle’s parents are a joy. 🙂

Overall, I really enjoyed this story! It was a joy to read (even though it felt a bit long at times) and I loved the setting and the characters!

My Rating

4/5

Thank you to the publisher (Bethany House Fiction) and Netgalley for providing me with a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review; I was not required to write a positive review.

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