‘The Spice King’: A Historical Novel Sure to be an Experience


Author: Elizabeth Camden 
Publication Date: 2019
Publisher: Bethany House
Genre: Fiction; Historical Romance
Source: Publisher Provided –thank you, Bethany House!
Rating: ★★★½ the spice king

The Spice King by Elizabeth Camden | Book Review

STORY | For his entire life, Gray Delacroix has worked hard. The result of which is a successful generational family company that proudly sells the finest gourmet spices. But now, as a wealthy distinguished gentleman, the one thing he doesn’t have, a family, seems very important.

When he meets with Annabel Larkin, Gray is both agitated and impressed by her determination. Working as a botanist in D.C., Annabel has a mission: she is tasked with obtaining a rare orchid clipping that Gray may have in his possession. If she succeeds, a full time position may be on the line. But what she doesn’t know is that there may be someone who needs more than a plant from the impressive Gray Delacroix.

the spice king

REVIEW | The last time I read a novel by Elizabeth Camden escapes me. It’s been quite some time, but back when she released her debut, The Lady of Bolton Hill, I remember it having similarities to BBC’s North & South. Since then, I added Camden’s name to my short list of favorite historical fiction authors. In The Spice King, she weaves an entirely new tale that is no less enticing.

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What makes this historical novel stand apart is its unique setting or rather the elements that are Gray’s business. As someone who loves to use spices, and I do like to use cinnamon and nutmeg frequently, reading about all of the spices and the historical tracing of them is interesting. The way Gray talks about his work, and the first experience Annabel has in using something like pure vanilla adds a great deal of texture to the story, like discovering the layers of a fresh out of the oven vanilla cake.

I don’t think this is my favorite Camden novel (although to be fair, it has been a long time since I read anything by her), but it’s still a quality, expressive historical novel. There’s conflict, angst, history, interesting era specific presidential history, and of course, just a bit of romance to tie everything together.

Historical fiction aficionados will be pulled into this story, expertly told by one of the inspirational genres most talented, through their senses and the “aroma” of this world. Plus, can we just appreciate the hero on the cover? It’s an experience to be sure; one of flavor, of more than one faucet, you’re sure to savor.

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Sincere thanks to the publisher for kindly sending me a copy of this novel in consideration of review; all opinions are my own.

About Rissi JC

amateur graphic designer. confirmed bookaholic. bubbl’r enthusiast. critical thinker. miswesterner. social media coordinator. writer.


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