Scarlet by Jen Geigle Johnson (Review & #Giveaway)

I love the original story this one is based off of, so when I saw that, I jumped
at the chance to review. Read my thoughts and enter the tour giveaway below...

By Jen Geigle Johnson
Adult Historical Romance
Paperback & ebook, 256 Pages
May 1st 2018 by Covenant Communications Inc.


The roads in and out of Paris are heavily guarded, but the dead have easy passage out of the city. A ragged old woman transports the coffins of the most recent victims of the guillotine and is waved on unimpeded. Later, the same crone watches five French aristocrats step out of their coffins unscathed. Not beheaded but spirited away to safety by that most elusive of spies: the Pimpernel. Or, as she’s known in polite society, Lady Scarlet Cavendish.

When not assuming her secret identity as a hero of the French Revolution, Scarlet presents herself as a fashionable, featherbrained young widow flitting about London. In truth, this fa├žade is merely a diversion designed to conceal her clandestine work in France. Among members of the doomed French aristocracy, the Pimpernel is renowned for her bravery and cunning. But when tasked with rescuing handsome Comte Matteo Durand, she faces an unprecedented challenge: she is falling in love with the man. If ever there were a time to keep her head, it is now— because in a world brimming with intrigue, she is not the only one harboring secrets. And if Scarlet doesn’t take care, Madame la Guillotine may finally catch up with the Pimpernel.

Praise for the Book

“Jen handled her adaptation beautifully, she makes the history of this tumultuous era come alive. Those familiar with The fictional world of The Pimpernel will appreciate her salute to the original and lovers of history will applaud how she makes the French Revolution personal, and intimate.

“She has a beautiful grasp on our innate desire for freedom and infuses that into her story. The plot is heart rending and suspenseful. The romance is toe tingling and the characters are so realistic, for the first time in my life, I felt emotionally connected to Marie Antoinette. With a strong female character you can root for this is one of my new favorite Pimpernel adaptations.”

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My Review

SCARLET is a unique twist on the classic, THE SCARLET PIMPERNEL. The author did a fantastic job in staying true to the ideals of the original, but making this very much her own story. With delightful characters, intriguing espionage, plenty of danger, strong villains, and a sweet romance, this story is engaging from beginning to end.

I loved Scarlet from the start! I loved her intelligence and wit, her ability to manipulate, her kindness, and her loyalties. She was a very fun character. I also really liked Matteo. His character wasn't quite as strong, but he still was easy to cheer on. He brought a nice balance to Scarlet and some lovely banter. There were some fun side characters as well, and definitely some villains that were easy to hate.

What I loved most about this story was all the subterfuge and plotting. The disguises were marvelous, as were the plans. The story definitely moved at a good pace. I also enjoyed the romance. It moved a little fast, but I could feel the chemistry from the start. It's also nice that you don't have to be familiar at all with THE SCARLET PIMPERNEL to read this story. In fact, I hope if you haven't read the classic that this story will temp you to do so. The author also included some historical details at the back of the book that I enjoyed reading through.

In the end, was it what I wished for? I really enjoyed this one! It's full of adventure, witty banter, danger, romance, and tugged on my heart. A highly enjoyable read!

Content: Some gruesome violence during the French Revolution and some innuendo.
Source: I received a complimentary copy from the publisher, which did not require a positive review nor affect it in any way.

About the Author

Jen Geigle Johnson once greeted an ancient turtle under the water by grabbing her fin. Other vital things to know: the sound a water-ski makes on glassy water and how to fall down steep moguls with grace. No mountain is too steep for her to climb, yet. During a study break date in college, she sat on top of a jeep’s roll bars up in the mountains and fell in love. She discovered her passion for England while kayaking on the Thames near London as a young teenager.

Now an award-winning author and mother of six, she loves to share bits of history that might otherwise be forgotten. Whether in Regency England, the French Revolution, or Colonial America, her romance novels are much like life is supposed to be: full of adventure. She is a member of the RWA, the SCBWI, and LDStorymakers. She is also the chair of the Lonestar.Ink writing conference.

Tour-Wide Giveaway

If you'd like to read an excerpt for the book, you can find one here.

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