The Traitor

Written by Grace Burrowes

In the second book of her interconnected Captive Hearts Regency series, the author undertakes a daunting challenge: to transform a traitor to his country into a sympathetic romance hero, worthy of a good woman’s love. In part the author accomplishes this by making Sebastian more admirable than his antagonists: a corrupt French intelligence agent and a group of aristocratic English officers (always an easy target); the heroine’s family is not very nice either. But Sebastian not only served as an interrogator in the French army, but used harsh methods on his victims. When she observes his remorse and learns the circumstances that placed him in this situation, Milly offers a thoughtful defense of his conduct, and since she really does deserve our admiration (and Sebastian’s) for her courage and resourcefulness in coping with a learning disability, this does help. The rather convenient resolution dodges the more serious implications, and an uneasy disconnect remains between Sebastian’s dark past and his present considerate behavior. Despite flaws, however, this is a thought-provoking romance, and the author displays her customary skill in the use of subtle irony in the dialogue. Recommended.