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The Passion of the Purple Plumeria (Pink Carnation #10)

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3.96 of 5 stars 3.96  ·  rating details  ·  1,753 ratings  ·  305 reviews
Colonel William Reid has returned home from India to retire near his children, who are safely stowed in an academy in Bath. Upon his return to the Isles, however, he finds that one of his daughters has vanished, along with one of her classmates.

Having served as second-in-command to the Pink Carnation, one of England’s most intrepid spies, it would be impossible for Gwendol
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Paperback, 468 pages
Published August 6th 2013 by NAL Trade (first published August 6th 2011)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Jeffrey
Purple. The color of royalty. The hot color of red mingled with the cold color of blue. So appropriately the favored color of Miss Gwendolyn Meadows, middle-aged spinster, chaperone and assistant spy to Miss Jane Wooliston, AKA the Pink Carnation. She’ll never be mistaken for a queen but she is just that to a loveable rogue of a career officer, Colonel William Reid. Finally, in “Pink X,” we are introduced to a heroine and hero who prove you don’t always have to be young to experience the thrill ...more
Caz
I absolutely loved this book . I’m woefully behind on the Pink Carnation series, but I jumped at the chance to review this one, not least because it has rather a USP (Unique Selling Point) in the genre – namely that the hero and heroine are of more mature years (he’s fifty-four, she’s forty-five). That certainly wasn’t the only reason, however. Ms. Willig’s writing is intelligent and frequently humorous, her characters leap off the page and she spins a superb yarn.

For anyone not familiar with th
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Laura (Kyahgirl)
2/5; 2 stars; DNF

Usually I'll give a 'DNF' a 1 star but I think this author really deserves credit for having an older couple as the main love interest. You don't see that very often and I really enjoyed that aspect of the book. Ms. Willig is clearly an accomplished writer and it shows in the dialogue and descriptions.
I also loved Kate Reading as the narrator of the story,she is fabulous.

Unfortunately, those positives were not enough to make up for a loose and meandering plot, tedious scenes t
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Em
The Passion of the Purple Plumeria is the penultimate book in the Pink Carnation mystery series. While I enjoyed the previous two books in the series, I felt there was an odd disconnect between them and the earlier books. I think this is partly because 1) the historical mystery stories were set in France and 2) the main couples in the historical stories were brand new characters (except for Augustus Whittlesby, who was previously a very minor character). The Passion of the Purple Plumeria (I'm g ...more
Gretchen
Yay, Miss Gwen gets a book! One thing I have enjoyed about this series is seeing minor characters develop into major ones. This installation is a great example as Miss Gwen, fearsome chaperone and wielder of a vicious parasol, steps onto the main stage.

I liked the way Willig approached this story. Miss Gwen is past 40, not the early 20s of Jane and her friends. So there was some backstory that needed to be explained, as well as an opportunity to comment on social options for spinsters in Regenc
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MB
Found both of these characters to be too heavy handed on the buffoonery side. Author seemed to intend them too much as figures of fun, and personally that grated on me the reader. Felt like Willig was treating them as clowns-- due to their 'advanced age' perhaps? Just a feeling--I felt they were disrespected.

Miss Jane's sad backstory meant to make readers feel for her but then author goes back to using her as the comic element. Would much rather have seen this story handled touchingly with real
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Elizabeth (Miss Eliza)
Colonel William Reid is retiring to England to live out his life in leisure with his two daughters, Kat and Lizzy, leaving behind three very different, one very difficult, sons in India. Little does he know that the school in Bath that Lizzy has been attending, Miss Climpson's Academy, seems to be the epicenter of spies in the battle between the French and the English. For two years Miss Gwendolyn Meadows has been at the center of that fight, or slightly next to the center wielding a dangerous p ...more
Christine
I was fortunate enough to get my hands on an ARC of this book and it's fantastic. Pink Carnation fans will be delighted by it. We learn so much about Miss Gwen and why she is the way she is. While Purple Plumeria has all of the elements of a great Willig book (humor, romance, swashbuckling spies), what sets this book apart from the others is that it's told from a more mature perspective and highlights the fact that priorities are different for people in their 40s and 50 (as are Miss Gwen and Col ...more
Lori McD
3.5-4 stars

Miss Gwen has always been the starched, staunch, sharp-tongued and sharp-witted chaperone to Jane. She's been in the shadows of Jane and the "younger" set so far in the Pink Carnation series.

Well, in this book, Miss Gwen has her day and meets her match! And I have to say that I ADORE that Miss Gwen's match is a Scot! Jane's younger sister is missing from her young ladies' finishing school, and with the Gardiner (the latest French spymaster) breathing down Jane's neck, it's time to pu
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Jess
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Angie
I have long been a Pink Carnation series fan...and hearing the next in the series was going to be about Miss Gwen, I'll admit I had reservations. I just didn't know how she'd work her magic. Boy was I WROnG!! This is now one of my favorites in the series!

This tale involving primarily Miss Gwen, Jane, & Colonel Reid is enchanting. I loved hearing Miss Gwen's story and seeing her bloom. There are many revelations involving multiple characters you won't want to miss!! I'm already looking forwar
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Holly
Nov 30, 2014 Holly rated it 5 of 5 stars
Shelves: 2014
No surprise...I knew I would love Miss Gwen's story:)
Sharlene
I loved this book. It was a fun read with plenty of suspense and humor and a delightful love story intertwined.
Ubalstecha
Gwendolyn Meadows has been the second-in-command to the Pink Carnation since the day Amy and Jane hatched the idea over two years before. Since then by day she has been Miss Gwen, the chaperon possessed of a keen aim with her parasol. By night, she has been a spy. But now, Jane's sister has disappeared from her boarding school, along with a friend. Gwen has no choice but to return to England with Jane in order to help with the search. This throws her into the path of Colonel William Reid, who fa ...more
Jay
After being less than impressed with THE GARDEN INTRIGUE, I wondered if, after so many books in this series, Willig wasn't losing some steam. THE PASSION OF THE PURPLE PLUMERIA laid to rest all of my fears. I thoroughly enjoyed this, and what I enjoyed most was how different it was from the previous books in the series. In PASSION, we get to see an older couple fall in love, and we also get to see how Jane and Miss Gwen make the Pink Carnation work.

I didn't really understand some of the plot wit
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Jessica
Wow, I knew this one was going to be a great historical read, but I had no idea there would be mystery and secret spies involved. Instead of the same old historical romance, this book had much more intrigue, secrets, and, of course, a steamy romance.

Colonel William Reid has returned from India in hopes of settling down with his children, but he doesn't expect to find his youngest daughter missing with one of her classmates. Lucky for William, the classmate just so happens to be the sister of th
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Hannah Spaar
I would encourage anyone considering this series to read the first three novels and stop.

I have a weakness for this series, it's true. But in the past few books, I've started to feel that weakness be abused. I find myself clutching on for any sign of Amy Balcourt, Richard Selwick, Miles Dorrington or Henrietta Dorrington (and having absolutely no sign of poor Letty and Geoff) despite being showered instead with countless new women who all think and speak the way Gilmore Girls sounds and go throu
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Angelc
3.5 Stars

Lauren Willig's books are always great, so even though this one wasn't my favorite of hers, it was still a good, entertaining read. I think my biggest hurdle with the book was William. Usually, Willig makes me fall head over heels for her love interests, even though her books aren't truly "romances." However, this time, the romantic lead just didn't work for me. I didn't see many redeeming characteristics in him. He was kind of an oaf, for lack of a better word. I'm all for strong heroi
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Olivia
I have been following the Pink Carnation series since its very beginning and I have to say that this was among my favourites! I enjoyed getting to learn more about Miss Gwen from her own perspective (and from Col. Reid who found her trademark prickliness to be endearing.) I'll be honest and say that while I adore Ms. Willig and her series, I struggled to get into "The Garden Intrigue" and so I'm thrilled to once again find that spark in her books.

Plumeria was the type that before I was aware of
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Chelsey
This is one of the better Pink novels. That's not to say I haven't enjoyed the other's, but, this one is nice because it brought the story back to the core characters, Jane and Miss Gwen. I felt I was more connected to the story because we already know who the characters are. The only 'new' character was Col. Reid but even then we knew of him from Blood Lily. There was also more action and it wasn't as formulaic as The Orchid Affair or The Garden of Intrigue. This made the novel a faster read. I ...more
Carolyn Thomas
Another light, bright, breezy and fun read from Ms. Willig. No spoiler alert here - the girl always gets her guy, so in this case Miss Gwen gets Colonel Reid. Unfortunately Miss Gwen does not seem like the same character we have encountered in the other books of the series. She acts more like her much younger counterparts, no doubt as an excuse for the return of the somewhat torrid scenes that were present in the first couple of books and which might serve to add to the number of pages but do no ...more
Sandra
Disappointing instalment in the Pink Carnation series. I didn't mind that the hero and heroine were older ( indeed Gwen is actually closer to my age than the usual heroine). Unfortunately I found neither of them particularly likeable. And unusually for Lauren Willig I just wasn't that interested in their story. In previous instalments she has made me care about some rather unlikeable heroines ( Penelope & Mary spring to mind). Also Gwen seemed almost like a different character, and Jane who ...more
Phyllis Laatsch
I really enjoyed this. I glommed on the series back when I first discovered it and burned out, but coming at this a bit fresher, I liked it better. Hooray for Miss Gwen!

Still, the modern day stuff isn't my favorite part. There are also so many characters who pop up from earlier books that I get confused.
Sbuchler
Genre: Regency Romance

I enjoyed this novel quite a bit -- having an older hero and heroine was a nice change of pace, although it did suffer slightly from a problem Willig had before in The Betrayal of the Blood Lily - that when she takes a minor character who's something of a caricature in the other books (the no-nonsense duenna Gwendolyn Meadows in this book, the licentious Penelope Deveraux in The Betrayal of the Blood Lilly) and makes them the heroine of their own book, they don't seem quite
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Keilani Ludlow
This is another one of those "3 star or 4 star?" books. More than three, less than 4.

This series is a past/present historical romance mystery adventure. Wow, does that cover it all? All it needs is a robot and a dragon to cover every genre.

Seriously though, great writing. Enjoyable plot. Likeable characters. The juxtaposition between the contemporary characters and their little dramas, and the historical characters and their stories, is quite enjoyable. The main character in the past, Gwen, is
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CMac G
My first one. I should have read #1. You can tell it is a later effort - very forced. The three pronged story telling is far too much with the fake novel, the past and the present.As an example, it seems she used fever dream just to make her page quota. And I was also dismayed to discover it was a romance novel. ugh. Maybe I won't read #1.

Synopsis: Modern Day: On assignment in London, an American professor's research finds her dating/living with a local whose family home is the object of her res
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Katie
I was a little bored during some aspects of this, but was ultimately into it. Just a few notes, I guess.

(view spoiler)
Kalendra Dee
Miss Gwen is featured in this delightful installment of the Pink Carnation series. Miss Gwen is thrown together by circumstances with Colonel William Reid, recently returned from service in India. Colonel Reid has come to collect his youngest daughter, Lizzie, from her boarding school only to discover that she is missing along with Pink Carnation’s younger sister. Thinking that the girl’s disappearance might be connected with Miss Gwen’s and the Purple Carnation’s espionage activities in the cou ...more
Laura
I discovered earlier this summer that I had not yet read the 10th book in Lauren Willig's Pink Carnation series, which surprisingly had been published last summer. When I realized that the main character in this book was Ms. Gwen, the Pink Carnation's second-in-command, I raced to the library to get it and happily immersed myself in this fun, easy read. In the past storyline, Ms. Gwen and Col. William Reid are searching for the Lost Jewels of Behar, which in the present day storyline Colin and E ...more
Caz
A really fabulous listen - Kate Reading is an excellent narrator. It was great to read a story with an older hero and heroine (54 and 45 respectively).

Review to follow.
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Lauren Willig is the New York Times bestselling author of thirteen works of historical fiction. Her books have been translated into over a dozen languages, awarded the RITA, Booksellers Best and Golden Leaf awards, and chosen for the American Library Association's annual list of the best genre fiction. After graduating from Yale University, she embarked on a PhD in English History at Harvard befor ...more
More about Lauren Willig...
The Secret History of the Pink Carnation (Pink Carnation, #1) The Masque of the Black Tulip (Pink Carnation, #2) The Deception of the Emerald Ring (Pink Carnation, #3) The Seduction of the Crimson Rose (Pink Carnation, #4) The Temptation of the Night Jasmine (Pink Carnation, #5)

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