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Blackhawk (Spymasters #4)

4.13  ·  Rating Details ·  2,326 Ratings  ·  274 Reviews
Hawker is her enemy, lover, and only hope.

Someone stalks shopkeeper Justine through London's gray streets, stabs her under cover of the rain. She staggers to the door of the one man who can save her, lover in their youth now Head of British Secret Service, Sir Adrian Hawkhurst.

Adrian wanted beautiful "Owl" back in his bed, but not wounded and clinging to life. Now, as he d
ebook, 327 pages
Published November 28th 2011 by Berkeley Sensation (first published November 1st 2011)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Oct 16, 2011 Katie(babs) rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The Black Hawk is one of my most anticipated reads this year because the hero, Hawker, aka Adrian Hawkhurst, former thief, master pickpocket from the rookies of St. Giles, Head of the British Intelligence Service in 1818 Post-Napoleonic War England, has made a lasting impression based on the past three books from Joanna Bourne. The one before this, The Forbidden Rose, was a prequel set during the French Revolution, which featured Hawker as a thirteen year old grubby street boy, but one who becom ...more
Oct 20, 2011 Melanie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I reviewed this novel on my blog

'The Black Hawk’ by Joanna Bourne is a tale that had to be told. I have a feeling that if Ms. Bourne never intended for it, she would have been literally mobbed by every fan of her earlier tales, until she ‘put it out there’.

How can I relate to you my emotions while reading this tender love story?! Reading it I felt like Julia Roberts in that scene with Richard Gere where he dolls her all up and takes her to see her first Opera
Wicked Incognito Now
Sweet utter perfection.

My crystal ball tells me.....Nothing will live up to this for many many months.
I decided to let myself sit on this one for a couple of days before I wrote a review. Sometimes I get swept up in a book and wind up realizing a few hours after the fact that it really wasn’t all that amazing. And for all my excitement after reading this one there were still so many niggling issues:

1.) Despite the book starting with the heroine being stabbed by a poisoned knife, the first eight chapters or so were pretty dull.

2.) On this same note, save for the lovely final scene, the final eig
Jul 03, 2012 Felicia rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I mean, I really like this author's writing style in everything she does. It's vaguely flowery and antiquated, so be warned I like that and it makes some people furious, so it might not be for you. It makes the book feel more "significant" than others in the genre, more Outlander light than frothy stuff. ANYWAY I enjoyed this book, but I think there was some tension lost in the plot construction. I mean, there was no tension because you pretty much knew the two were DEFINITELY gonna get together ...more
Megan Winget
You think I loved "The Forbidden Rose"?! I love this book so much that I want to start a family with this book. I want to get married and live happily ever after with this book. This book and I are meant for each other. I love this book so much it's depressing. HOW am I going to read other books?!

The story, the plot and writing - fantastic. The characterizations: spot on. Like I said in the Forbidden Rose review, these characters are SPIES. Their emotions are HIDDEN. They don't go around expres
Anna (Bobs Her Hair)
Nov 04, 2011 Anna (Bobs Her Hair) rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Romance Readers
Joanna Bourne is an author who elevates historical romance to another level. She’s a master at fusing historic events with action, intrigue, danger, and romance. In The Black Hawk, Ms. Bourne’s produces a gripping love story between French spy Justine “ Owl” DeCabrillac and English spy Adrian “Hawker” Hawkhurst.

”It has always been you.”

Justine and Hawker - Their Background
Justine DeCabrillic is the daughter of French aristos who died during the French Revolution. At the age of eleven, she w
I've given this an A for narration and A+ for content at All About Romance.

In All About Romance’s review of The Black Hawk in November 2011, Jean Wan wrote,

“Once in a while, during every reader's literary life, you encounter a book that reminds you why you are a reader. It renews your faith, if faith was lost; it rekindles your interest, if interest waned; and every word, every page, is a wonder. Adrian and Justine's story is not only such a book and it confirms Joanna Bourne is one of the best
3.5 stars. I have a hard time articulating my thoughts on this one, because it's not really romance novel shaped. Most of the relationship drama occurs in flashback, and the bits in the present of the novel are what would normally be a crisis and denouement. However, there's a mystery in the present that has a whole arc, with roots in some of the flashback bits but mostly taking place in the present. If that makes any sense whatsoever. So this book didn't read like the typical romance novel, whi ...more
Bloody brilliant, quite frankly. I'm always reluctant to read romances where the protagonists have the on-again-off-again thing going on for years. It never seems to convince. But this time, it's perfect, and I love the way we get to see their relationship develop when they were little more than children. Can't wait for the next one.
**3.5 stars**

It's clear that Ms. Bourne likes Hawker as a secondary character and maybe didn't have something in mind for him but felt obliged to write his story. This book was very disjointed with lots of flashbacks from the French Revolution - while the Napoleonic Wars were just glossed over - with some part in the present, which was 24 years after Hawker and Justine had met.

I got why Justine was originally for Napoleon but it was glossed over why she still kept with him when he showed up his
Mandi Schreiner
Finally we get Hawker’s book and it has been a long time in the making. Adrian Hawker, former thief, now mastermind spy, having trained under William Doyle. At the start of The Black Hawk, we see Adrian in his mid-30’s, and Head of the British Intelligence Service. And as goes his life, he gets drama on his doorstep. His former lover, (always his love) Justine, shows up stabbed and bleeding. Justine is a french spy, and although meeting when they were very young and cementing their union, they h ...more
Zumbagirl - (I had to attach this link, I was thinking about this song almost the entire time I read this book, "For Your Eyes Only")
To say I Love This Book would be an understatement. There are no words to say how much I enjoyed this book - Adrian's story - finally!!! This is the last in the series, and I loved the first one (The Spymaster's Lady) but this one takes the cake - oh, my goodness, it is so delicious...
Adrian aka The Black Hawk has been my favorite character all a
Sep 06, 2015 Beth rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: reviewed
Reread this this morning, and it is even more fabulous than I remembered. And I think it's because there are real stakes: no manufactured drama, but two very smart people on different sides. They both do a lot of growing, and they both stay absolutely recognizable, and there's something very wish-fulfillmenty and charming about them carrying a torch for each other through everything. It's a foregone conclusion, and the structure only adds to that - but what romance isn't?
Oh maybe 4 and 1/2, just because I wanted more more more, especially at the end. It was achingly romantic. It is simply the best redemption/healing/sensual first encounter I've ever read and I'm wondering if it's because 'Awker and Owl knew each other so well. Both so courageous and loyal and patriotic, yet always with a care to the other. I loved it.

Now when's Pax's story and have we met Camille before?
Nov 02, 2011 Dls rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a truly wonderful book. As soon as I finished it I went back to the beginning and started it all over again. The characters have taken up residence in my brain and I think will be there for a long time to come.

Readers have been demanding Adrian's book ever since we met him in Bourne's first book, Spymaster's Lady, and this truly is his book. A lot of it is written from his point of view, for one thing. But more importantly, Bourne manages to have us watch Adrian grow up from 12 to 19 to
Oct 04, 2011 Deniz rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Adrian's both mysterious and alluring. It's exciting to watch him and Justine at odds, through no fault of their own; they're both sharp and quick-witted, intense and dedicated, yet find themselves on opposite sides of The Game of spying.

Everything I want to say about this book gives away spoilers for what happens between Adrian and Justine. If I say the scene in the storm was sweet and exciting, you won't know what I mean unless I tell you just what they got up to under the rain - and why. If I
Brandy Painter
Wow I hate this cover.



As I have said in every review I've done for this series so far, I just couldn't wait until I got to this story. Adrian was my favorite part of each of the first three books and I adored Justine in The Forbidden Rose. I was a little concerned because often when there is a much beloved character in a romance series who gets to be the hero of his own book, I end up being disappointed. I was also nervous because I wasn't thrill
Jeannie Lin
Aug 24, 2011 Jeannie Lin rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: keeper
I just finished reading an ARC of this book and I have that happy, afterglow feeling you get when you finish a rich and satisfying story. It's Joanna Bourne's best book yet. Adrian Hawker is just an absolutely fascinating character, one of the best in romance, and he's matched with Justine who is totally his equal in complexity.
Margaret Mallory
I should not have started this when I'm close to deadline for my next book. I am LOVING it!!!! Bad me, I was up until 3:00 a.m. reading.
Amanda Ryan
Redonk Nutshell: The story of two rival spies and how they went from enemies, to friends to lovers

The long awaited book in Joanna Bourne's Spymaster series has finally arrived! I rejoiced at getting my hands on Adrian Hawker's story. I've read three of four of Bourne's series, and I've been somewhat enamored of Adrian from the start. I was really, really excited to read this and get more quality time with Adrian.

The book starts out with Justine DeCabrillan, a former French spy, being attacked wh
Matthias Vannieuwenhuyze
Oct 30, 2014 Matthias Vannieuwenhuyze rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: dutch
Slechte vertaling, banale link met een historische achtergrond, stereotiepe en naïeve personages, typefouten, gratuite en vreemde naaktscènes, een snuifje pedofilie...
Heb dankzij dit boek voor eeuwig een degout van de woordcombinaties 'haar intieme plekje' en 'iemand naar de andere wereld helpen'.

(Vertaling in NL. 'Nog steeds in jouw hart')
3.5 stars.Very enjoyable book! I couldn't wait to read Hawk's story after getting to know him in The Spymaster's Lady. This book came very close to living up to the expectation, but didn't quite reach my 4-5 stars quota. It wasn't as good as The Spymaster's Lady IMO, but it was entertaining nonetheless. Espionage storyline isn't my favorite theme (and there were lots of it) and I kind of felt like Hawk was a little more in love with Justine than she was with him. When your woman threathens to ki ...more
Dec 12, 2011 Jennifer rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: romance
This book was great! Joanna Bourne is a wonderful writer. She slowly releases information, leading you along with crumbs until you are completely wrapped up in the story. I loved the equality between the hero and heroine and how they understood that their love for each and their love for their country could conflict, but not ruin the other.
Jun 02, 2014 Smileegirll rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I am surprised that this author's work is not more prominently featured. It is a shame as the characters and stories are so well developed that many are missing out on a well crafted read. I can only think of a handful of books that I have enjoyed enough that I would read them again as soon as I finished them.

This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Sandy Williams
Gawd, it's ridiculous how much I love this author. I think I should just re-read all of her books over and over and over again, and maybe I'll absorb just a tiny bit of her writing talent. She writes beautiful prose and captures a character's emotion just perfectly.

I'll admit, when we flashed back to when Hawk and Justine were kids, I was disappointed. I didn't want to read about KIDS falling in love. I wanted to read about these two awesome spies falling for each other. But somewhere around 20
Nov 11, 2012 Rebecca rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is less the stereotypical romance plot than a spy novel with a strong romantic element. It's a fairly common subgenre at the moment (I blame The Scarlet Pimpernel), but Bourne's series is one of the better executed.

The main plot involves a plot against Justine's life that just may be an attack on Hawker, too. But the majority of the novel is actually flashbacks to various missions they have run together, and how their affair began and reached its current stage.

One of the big problems in ma
Aly is so frigging bored
A book worth reading. I have wanted to read Adrian's story from the first time I met him in the 1st book, The Spymaster's Lady. He is a fascinating character, one you can't predict what he'll do next.

Quotes I love:
“Join us. Cummings is about to reveal why he’s graced me with his presence today. I’m . . . what’s the word I want?”
“Exactly. I knew you would have the mot juste in your pocket. I am intrigued.”

He drank again. “Last time you gave me brandy was outside Zurich.”
“When you came
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Sinopsis en Español // Synopsis in Spanish 1 2 Mar 14, 2015 10:34AM  
WHY are books not all published simultaneously in the US and the UK? 2 20 Nov 03, 2011 04:27PM  
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Joanna lives in the foothills of the Blue Ridge with her family, a medium-sized mutt and a faux Himalayan cat.

She writes Historical Romances set in England and France during the Napoleonic Wars. She's fascinated by that time and place - such passionate conviction and burning idealism ... and really sexy clothes.
More about Joanna Bourne...

Other Books in the Series

Spymasters (6 books)
  • The Spymaster's Lady (Spymasters, #1)
  • My Lord and Spymaster (Spymasters, #2)
  • The Forbidden Rose (Spymasters, #3)
  • Rogue Spy (Spymasters #5)
  • Untitled (Spymasters, # 6)

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“You know every alley in my mind, every broken bottle and rat scuttling in there.” 3 likes
“The good news was, she probably hadn't brought him here to gut him. If she wanted him dead, she'd be sensible about it and stab him in the street. She was complex, not perverse.” 2 likes
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