by Julia Quinn
When Olivia Bevelstoke is told that her new neighbor may have killed his fiancée, she doesn't believe it for a second, but still, how can she help spying on him, just to be sure? So she stakes out a spot near her bedroom window, cleverly concealed by curtains, watches, and waits... and discovers a most intriguing man, who is definitely up to something.
Sir Harry Valentine works for the boring branch of the War Office, translating documents vital to national security. He's not a spy, but he's had all the training, and when a gorgeous blonde begins to watch him from her window, he is instantly suspicious. But just when he decides that she's nothing more than a nosy debutante, he discovers that she might be engaged to a foreign prince, who might be plotting against England. And when Harry is roped into spying on Olivia, he discovers that he might be falling for her himself...
Ms. Quinn is brilliant at writing flawed/scarred characters. They are sympathetic without being pathetic. Sir Harry is he son of an alcoholic father, and a dead in the eyes mother. His overbearing grandmother takes over his upbringing and education. His older sister rebels and his younger brother is left to fend for himself when Harry leaves home. His cousin Sebastian is in many ways his polar opposite, but also his best friend.
Miss, Olivia Bevelstoke is Harry's new next door neighbor. She is spunky, and fun, and prone to making mental lists. Especially when she's bored with a conversation. She has a married brother and a sister-in-law who is her best friend. Her twin brother Winston is a hoot. (Can't wait to read his story)
Enter a Russian prince, intrigue, a silly hat, facing windows and a Lurid, Gothic Novel, and you've got great fun. I recommend this book for sure. It gets a 4.5 stars for sure.