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Customer Reviews for Harvest House Publishers Circle of Spies, Culper Ring Series #3

Harvest House Publishers Circle of Spies, Culper Ring Series #3

Baltimore, 1865-Marietta Hughes never wanted to be a spy.but espionage is thrust upon her as the War Between the States rolls on. Unbeknownst to her, a Confederate secret society bent on destroying the Union she loves has been meeting in her basement. When she discovers the plots and papers covering her walls, she feels as though she is losing her world.

Shade Osborne, an undercover Pinkerton agent, is determined to do whatever is necessary to help end the conflict between the North and the South. When he infiltrates this secret cell, it isn't just their inner workings that baffle him-it's the beautiful woman who seems to be a puppet for the new leader and yet.somehow not an enemy of the Union.

Average Customer Rating:
4.875 out of 5
4.9
 out of 
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8 out of 8100%customers would recommend this product to a friend.
Customer Reviews for Circle of Spies, Culper Ring Series #3
Review 1 for Circle of Spies, Culper Ring Series #3
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Civil War, Spies, and Romance. A great mix!

Date:June 21, 2014
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Kate
Age:25-34
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
I've probably have mention this a time or two before, but I'll say it again, I love books based around the Civil War. I love that era. There is so much that happened during that time. So, it is safe to say that if there is a book set in that time, I'm going to do my level headed best to read it!
Circle of Spies did no disappoint. This book brings your right into the story with out any preamble. Gettysburg is over but the nation still battles, families all over the nation are in mourning, and our heroine, Mari is brought into her families business when she discovers something about her deceased husband and his brother, who is trying to court her, from her grandfather that is dark and disturbing.
Intriguing right?
I enjoyed this story right from the start. Mari is handed some staggering information, and in her stubborn style, she has to verify the information herself. In doing so reveals to everyone the secret underground society in the northern boarder states, that her deceased husband was in charge of and now her brother-in-law has taken over, for southern sympathizers who want to find a way to win for the South through spying. However, the Culper Ring isn't the only agency on to this group, the Pinkerton agents have infiltrated with a mole. A cool and closed off individual, Slade, who knows he has to walk a fine line showing is support for the group, while gaining the information he needs.
The setting was fantastic, each of the characters were unique and played off of each other well. I also enjoyed seeing Mari's grandparents in this story, they were the focus in Whispers from the Shadows, Thad and Gwyn. They were spunkier in this story and offered a bit of a laugh.
The nation collides it seems in this story not only on the battlefield but in the homes as each group of spies is doing their best to help their side in secret. The story also makes you question, how well do you really know the people around you? Mari is surrounded by people she believes thinks the same way she does, but that isn't the case. It's interesting how material possessions and connections can play such a big role in perception, especially in Mari's case.
Thank you to Harvest House, I received a copy of this book for free in exchange for an honest review.
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Review 2 for Circle of Spies, Culper Ring Series #3
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Maybe the Best one yet!

Date:May 5, 2014
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Anonymous
Location:TN
Age:35-44
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
American history is one of my favorite subjects; so obviously, I would enjoy a book like this, especially from this author, whom I have grown to appreciate. She is very talented!
Circle of Spies is once again a mystery comprising espionage by the Lane family and their descendants. This book can stand alone if you have not been following the series from the beginning, but takes on a much deeper meaning if you have followed from the start.
This book is based in the Civil War time period. Marietta is Thad Lane’s granddaughter and unbeknownst to her, just happens to have inherited a home from her late husband, which is secret quarters to the KGC (Knights of the Golden Circle). She has a memory like Detective Monk (if you are familiar with that TV series) As he calls it – a blessing and a curse, hers is as well. But to the benefit of the spy ring, her memory can be used for good.
When she discovers her late husband and future husband have been involved in a sabotage plan against the Union, things get down and dirty. Hr family asks her to join the Culper Ring and use her advantages to uncover important information that could save the president. She will be subtly working along side Pinkerton agent Slade Osborne to bring down the KGC. But if her soon to be fiance finds out what she is doing. She could be in grave danger.
Another aspect of the book, I loved, was Mari’s change of heart. She becomes a new creature in Christ. Instead of self-serving she begins serving others and looking out for their best interests. The change that comes over her is incredible, and yet, in its own way brings her added troubles. She has to learn to forgive herself for the mistakes she made in her past and her string of bad choices. Can God redeem her past and give her hope for her future? Or is she bound to pay for the path she has chosen?
This is a book you don’t want to miss!
I was privileged to receive this book from Harvest House in exchange for my honest opinion. I am not required to give a positive one.
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Review 3 for Circle of Spies, Culper Ring Series #3
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:May 2, 2014
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lcjohnson1988
Location:Indiana
Age:45-54
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
The books in this series keep getting better and better! This third installment in the Culper Ring Series is my favorite one. This story is set in 1865 near the end of the Civil War in Baltimore, Maryland. The Lane and Arnaud families are still involved in the spy game and have brought their children into the game too.
Slade Osborne is a Pinkerton agent sent to the Confederate sympathizing group known as the Knights of the Golden Circle. This group is bent on raising havoc against the North and keeping the South’s way of life alive and well despite what President Lincoln has decreed as law. The head of one of the subgroups is Slade’s target. Slade is a Unionist, but is working undercover to infiltrate the KGC. They are planning something big, but Slade must discover what it is and stop it before it is too late. The man in charge of this group is courting Marietta Hughes, a woman who attracts a lot of male attention, including Slade’s. At first he isn’t sure which side of the war she is on. She has an understanding with Devereaux Hughes, who owns slaves, but her family is staunchly Unionist. Is she more than the flirt and manipulator she shows to society? Is there more to this woman underneath the surface? What exactly is the KGC up to?
Marietta Hughes is a young widow who has previously only concerned herself with…herself. However, she begins to question if Devereaux really loves her or is just using her. She has a photographic memory and puts it to good use spying. As Slade begins searching for evidence of what the KGC is up to, he and Marietta spend more and more time together. Their romance blooms in secret, but neither thinks they are worthy of the other and that their probably is no together forever in their future. Marietta realizes what a shrew she has been and embraces the faith she has been taught by her parents. Is it too little too late? Can she right the wrongs in her life?
I thought watching Marietta struggle with the shame of her past was very realistically portrayed. She has seeks forgiveness from God and believes He has forgiven her, but hasn’t been able to grasp the freedom that goes with the forgiveness until she listens to the wise counsel of her friend. Once she understands, she blazes with her faith, compassion and mercy. Slade spent his young adulthood gambling, drinking and rebelling against his preacher father. However, he came to realize the value of his father’s teaching, how he was wasting his life and turned his life around to become a strong man of God. I liked both main characters for their wit and intelligence as well as their faith. This story just flew by as I quickly kept the pages turning to discover what was going to happen next. I thoroughly enjoyed all three novels in this series and am looking forward to what this author puts forth next.
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Review 4 for Circle of Spies, Culper Ring Series #3
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Best book of the series!

Date:April 27, 2014
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crtnybc
Location:British Columbia, Canada
Age:35-44
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
I've enjoyed all three of the books in this series, but this is the best. It got my attention at the very first chapter and kept it all the way through. Fantastic writing, suspense, danger, intrigue, romance, this story has it all. The main character, Marietta, goes through a metamorphosis from a spoiled, shallow, self centered woman to one with a completely different outlook on life but it feels very natural and real.
The characters from Whispers From the Shadows, the book before this, are Marietta's grandparents and Thad Lane has a role in the story and his character is a fun addition. With this series I would recommend starting with the first book, Ring of Secrets to fully understand what the Culper Ring is all about but you certainly could read each of the three books in any order without any trouble.
Oh, and I love this book trailer. Make sure you watch it. :o)
This book was provided to me by Harvest House Publishers for the purpose of an honest review. My opinion is my own. Thank you Harvest House.
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Review 5 for Circle of Spies, Culper Ring Series #3
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Outstanding

Date:April 3, 2014
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Iola
Location:New Zealand
Age:35-44
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
bluebonnet brideIt is 1865, and young widow Marietta Arnaud Hughes will shortly come out of mourning, and it is expected she will then marry her brother-in-law, Deveraux, who has been in love with her since they first met. Marietta is an odd combination of believable and fantastic. Her foibles and weaknesses are both familiar and relatable, but she has a gift, a photographic memory, and can remember every conversation she has ever had and every page of every book she has ever read.
A visit from her grandfather reveals a long-standing secret: that the family is a network of spies, and they need her help, both because of her special gift, and because they believe Deveraux is a leader in a secret organisation trying to undermine the government. But help is at hand, in the form of Slade Osbourne, a Pinkerton agent working for the family rail business. Unfortunately, he’s also too attractive for his own good, and Deveraux is a jealous suitor …
I really enjoyed Circle of Spies. The one fault is I thought there was too much male point of view—we got scenes from the viewpoints of Deveraux, Slade and Walker. While each character and scene did add to the overall plot, it just felt a little male-dominated at times (although that was probably a fair representation of the times!).
This is the fifth book in the Culper Ring series, following two novels and two free novellas, all following the Lane family and the activities of the Culpers at different times in American history. All have been good, but this was excellent. The research is excellent (but doesn’t overpower the characters and the story), the story is well-plotted with plenty of twists and turns, the characters are strong yet fallible, and there is a solid Christian message without being preachy. Recommended.
Thanks to Harvest House and NetGalley for providing a free ebook for review.
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Review 6 for Circle of Spies, Culper Ring Series #3
This review is fromCircle of Spies - eBook.
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Excellent

Date:April 18, 2014
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Kaelme
Age:25-34
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Another one I've thoroughly enjoyed by Roseanna White. Circle of Spies is another intriguing addition to her Culper Ring espionage series. I felt the characterizations were the strongest part of the novel, breathing life into people struggling with taking hold of redemption and all it entails. The intrigue was also very good, blending history and fiction well and keeping me waiting to see how everything would pan out. I remain a big fan of Roseanna White's fiction thus far.
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Review 7 for Circle of Spies, Culper Ring Series #3
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Different and intriguing Culper spy!

Date:February 6, 2014
Circle of Spies by Roseanna M. White is the third book in the Culper Ring series. If you are new to this series, it won't hurt anything to read them out of order. I know because I did by accident with the second book! haha I have since read the first book and the free e-book set in between the first and second stories. Plus, there's also a free e-book between the second and third books, too! I love that you can know more about the characters between each full length novel. :-)
Marietta Hughes has been a widow for the past 15 months, and even though she feels sorrow over her husband's death more than anything she feels guilty and ashamed for using him. Not loving him. And worse of all, for all her flirtatious looks to her husband's brother, Dev. But then her grandfather shows her something. Something that shakes her to her core and makes her reevaluate who she is and where she is going. Finally broken and defeated, she humbles herself before God and prays for the strength she needs to face the truth.... Devereaux Hughes, the man she thought she knew and loved is not only a member of the KGC, but he is a prominent leader with his headquarters below her house.
Her grandfather asks her to protect Slade Osborne, a Pinkerton agent who is infiltrating the Knights of the Golden Circle to garner information to aid the Union. Marietta reluctantly agrees and begins to aid Slade whenever the opportunity arises. With her gifted memory, she is able to do much for their cause, but along the way she starts becoming attracted to Slade. With her past, how can anyone good and kind possibly love her?
To me, one of the best parts of this story is the main character. It's not often that you read of a character struggling to be good even when she gets saved so she was a breath of fresh air even though she irritated me to no end at times with her flirtatious ways! lol Seeing how she changed and matured was written very well, and you couldn't help but root for her. I loved the message that our guilt from sin is one of our biggest detriments to growth because we are so bound by shame we can't move forward. Who hasn't experienced that? It's a wonderful story of grace, forgiveness, and love.
I enjoyed the story a lot, but I didn't like the spy plot. It just wasn't as good as the first two. It just kind of plodded along with hardly any suspense which in turn didn't leave me at the edge of my seat. Probably because we already know the ending to the plot the author chose. The characters and their lives were what really brought this story alive. So it's a great regular story just not the best if you are looking for a lot of suspense like the first two.
I was given this book free from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
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Review 8 for Circle of Spies, Culper Ring Series #3
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Sparks, spies, and secret societies

Date:December 15, 2013
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An Old Fashioned Girl
Location:Minnesota
Age:25-34
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
In the final installment of her series about the Culper Spy Ring, Roseanna M. White explores the ring's activities during the Civil War. By this time the ring is down to just family, but they are still vigilant in protecting the interests of their country. Marietta gets dragged into it when she finds out her in-laws are not the supporters of the Union she thought they were, but rather are involved in a dangerous secret society, and it becomes her job to help Pinkerton agent Slade Osbourne where she can without letting him know of her involvement. Slade, however, is not sure if Marietta is a southern sympathizer with her dead husband's family, if she is pro-Union with her own family, or if she is playing a game all her own.
Though there are three spy groups operating - the Knights of the Golden Circle, the Pinkertons, and the Culpers, White does a good job at keeping them distinct. Devereaux Hughes is a leader of the secret Confederate society the KGC (a solid bad guy that one can joyfully hate, in an evil and mildly creepy society). Slade is a Pinkerton agent who is pretending to be a Pinkerton double agent for the KGC, when he is really spying on them to take them down. Marietta, the Culper, is keeping an eye on both parties, to help Slade where she can and make sure the KGC does not succeed, while keeping her role unknown to the both of them. I had no trouble keeping track of which party was doing what, which is testament to the author's excellent ability to tell a story.
Marietta surprised me; it is not often the heroine of Christian fiction is an accomplished coquette. She can flirt, tease, and seduce with the best of them, but really she is operating under an oppressive burden of guilt for her fickleness with men, even if she has never broken the letter of the law. She is the sadder but wiser girl - surrounded by wealth, but poor in spirit; free to do as she pleases, but imprisoned by guilt.
A major point the author makes - one pointed at Marietta - is that while forgiveness does not eliminate the consequences of one's sins, that responsibility should not be a prison to one's soul. She writes, "You have prayed for forgiveness from your sins. Have you prayed for freedom from their bonds? . . . Never once in the bible does God speak either for or against physical slavery. But spiritual slavery - that is a topic He addresses time and again. Over and over Paul pleads with the early church to embrace the freedom of the soul that Christ offers. You must do that, Mari. You must cling, not just to cleansing, but to freedom." (228).
Circle of Spies is an excellent novel and I enjoyed immensely, but I wish it were not the conclusion to the series. The author hit on a marvelous theme for the books, and it is sad to see them end. However, she finishes it with a flourish! 5 out of 5 stars!
Thank you Harvest House and NetGalley for providing a free e-copy for the purpose of review; I was not required to make it positive, and all opinions are my own.
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