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The Spice King

(Hope and Glory #1)

4.19  ·  Rating details ·  1,419 ratings  ·  377 reviews
Gray Delacroix has dedicated his life to building an acclaimed global spice empire, but it has come at a cost. Resolved to salvage his family before they spiral out of control, he returns to his ancestral home for good after years of traveling the world.

As a junior botanist for the Smithsonian, Annabelle Larkin has been charged with the impossible task of gaining access to
Paperback, 348 pages
Published September 3rd 2019 by Bethany House Publishers
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Sarah Grace Grzy
Camden is my new favorite historical fiction author! No matter how many I read, I just can't find one I don't like! Camden is a master of this genre.

Annabelle Larkin is an adorably naive and innocent character, but that's not to say she doesn't have a backbone. She is passionate, tender-hearted, and nearly always optimistic, as well as patriotic with strong morals. I quickly fell in love with her sweet character. Grey Delacroix is quite the opposite. Embittered against the government for having
Deanne Patterson
Oct 14, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Deanne by:
No matter what subject matter the author writes on her research is thorough and exquisite. It's without question! I would have to imagine the author enjoys researching her books as that's how she writes.
For me what sets her books apart from the pack is the originality of the subject matter!
Yes, there is romance but it's not the story lead. I love these historical books which I can learn so much from. The cover is stunning and it's exciting to see the shift from females all the time gracing our c
Sep 08, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-in-2019
Lovely start to a new series! Gray is the oldest sibling and feels responsible for the success of his company and the well being of his younger twin brother and sister. Gray's world revolves around spices from around the globe.

Annabelle brings her blind sister Elaine from a Kansas farm to Washington DC. She made this move to give her sister the opportunity to be at the Library of Congress. Meanwhile, Annabelle is trying to secure a permanent position at the Smithsonian.

The details about the van
Jen. (JenGalaxy4 Christian Book Reviews)
What a well researched story!  The details were very unique!  You can clearly see Elizabeth Camden’s love for history by the attention to detail she shares with her readers.

I really enjoyed the characters.  I look forward to reading more about the Delacroix siblings!

This was my first time reading this author and I absolutely will read more by Elizabeth Camden in the future!

The Spice King is available NOW – visit for purchase details!

I received a complimentary copy of this b
Rachel McMillan
Sep 18, 2019 rated it really liked it
With her always detailed and immersive research and her glorious turns of phrase, Camden excels at spotlighting interesting and little known aspects of American history in her highly readable books. Her heroines are always intelligent and more than matches for their equally bright heroes. Gray and Annabelle are no exception.

The fact that Camden finds ways to extol the agency women did have as they worked up in a man's world is fascinating to me and she always draws out nuances in the threads of
Aug 31, 2019 rated it it was amazing
"I hope to the bottom of my soul that I never have to see you again."

Scorching words. Unfortunately for Annabelle Larkin they were understandable, if not deserved, for she had just made an excruciating, possibly unforgivable choice.

Hired as a temporary junior botanist for the Smithsonian, Annabelle and her sister arrive in Washington from Kansas with one mission in mind; to gain full-time employment that would pay Annabelle in valuable agricultural information, and enough monetary funds to save
Heidi Robbins (Heidi Reads...)
I'm always impressed by the amount of historical detail and circumstances the author weaves into the story that I had never considered, especially at a time when more women are making their way into the workforce. It makes me excited to think about these pioneers and how they contributed to our nation. Washington D.C. is a fascinating setting and I loved seeing the city through the eyes of Annabelle. She is driven with such purpose, whether it be analyzing grain samples or persuading someone to ...more
Lisa  (Bookworm Lisa)
**4.5 stars**

The title of the book was the first thing that intrigued me. I wanted to know who the spice king was? Did he live in another country? There were so many possibilities.

What I found was a great book set during the McKinley Presidency. This was a time of agricultural upheaval. It appears that food wasn't regulated and that cheap imitations and fillers could be sold to unsuspecting consumers. I was fascinated with the political intrigue, bribery, and the struggle to change packaging and
Elizabeth Camden is one of my autobuy authors. I see a new book, I click “add to cart” and then patiently wait 6 months for it to be released. This time I got extremely lucky as I was able ro read an advance e-copy and the waiting was cut short! And I’m so glad it was... because The Spice King is AMAZING. It’s the best christian historical fiction I read this year. I’m gonna tell you why.

First, I couldn’t stop reading. I read so much my ereader actually overheated. Did I wait for it to cool dow
Sep 30, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Heartwarming is the word that is buzzing around in my head still hours after finishing it. As usual, the writing was engaging and pulled me in from the beginning. I really liked the character of Gray Delacroix, he knew who he was and who he wasn't. He loved his younger siblings even though in the beginning, he clashed with them, he didn't give up on them and they knew that he loved them. It took me less than 24 hours to read this book and I wish the story of Gray, Annabelle, Elaine, Caroline, Lu ...more
Sarah Monzon
Sep 24, 2019 rated it really liked it
The history and look into food quality was really interesting!
I've given this a C+ for narration and a B for content at AudioGals - so that's somewhere between 3.5 and 4 stars, rounded up.

I haven’t read or listened to anything by Elizabeth Camden before, but one of my fellow reviewers at All About Romance is a big fan of her work, and after reading the synopsis of the author’s latest release, The Spice King, I decided to give it a try. It proved to be an entertaining listen; the writing is smooth and flows beautifully, the story has obviously been very wel
Oct 15, 2019 rated it liked it
‘The Spice King’ by Elizabeth Camden: A Historical Novel Sure to be an Experience | Book Review

STORY | For his entire life, Gray Delacroix has worked hard. The result of which is a successful generational family company that proudly sells the finest gourmet spices. But now, as a wealthy distinguished gentleman, the one thing he doesn’t have, a family, seems very important.

When he meets with Annabel Larkin, Gray is both agitated and impressed by her determination. Working as a botanist in D.C.,
Oct 13, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: reads-2019
This was a compelling and unusual read. Gray and Annabelle had a very unusual relationship, I definitely enjoyed their banter but did they have some major things to overcome to find happily ever after! This story line was very interesting and kept me invested throughout. There are elements that will carry over to the rest of the series and I am looking forward to finding out all those secrets!

I received this book as a member of the launch team and was not required to post a positive review. All
Jun 01, 2020 rated it really liked it
Elizabeth Camden can always be trusted to deliver riveting fiction from fascinating, lesser known bits of history. I mean, I've never even thought about the politics of the food industry from a historical perspective and yet this author has woven a complex tale of intrigue and betrayal and impossible choices around that very topic.

Annabelle is smart and gutsy and driven! She has to be if she wants to succeed in her male dominated field. Love her strength and determination, anchored in the roots
Jul 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Originally posted on Inkwell Inspirations

“At the end of her life, she wanted to know that she had made a difference for the better.”

In The Spice King, the first installment of her Hope and Glory series, award winning author Elizabeth Camden has created an intriguing historical fiction novel filled with faith, romance, betrayal, and treason. Elizabeth Camden is a master at taking relatively unknown parts of history, such as the lack of regulation in the U.S. food industry and the use of adulterat
Paula Shreckhise
The Spice King is book number one in the series Hope and Glory by historical author Elizabeth Camden.
An avid fan of history, I relished this setting of 1900 in Washington D.C. and surrounding areas. I learned about the early days of regulating the food industry and the beginning of the Good Housekeeping Seal of Approval. The glimpse into the Smithsonian and The Department Of Agriculture was fascinating. The explanations of the process involved in spice making were especially interesting.
Ms. Ca
A Dangerous Legacy (Empire St #1) 3 stars
A Desperate Hope (Empire State#3) DNF.
The Spice King (Hope + Glory #1) 4 stars.

Had romance, mystery & spirituality. Washington
DC & trips to Cuba, May 1900, going forward.

Wealthy Gray traveled the world to find, process
& sell spices. His trade rival was the Magruder fam.
who employed dishonest means. The Smithsonian
gave Annabelle, a college grad, a 6 mo. assignment
as a junior botanist. Later, she enjoyed a promotion
to the US Dept. of Agriculture. U
Bookish Ally
Oct 25, 2020 rated it really liked it
I don’t know why I’m always so embarrassed to say when I’ve read a romance. It’s like a little guilty secret of mine. Here’s the thing - they comfort me because I KNOW they’ll end happily, and that I will feel good, probably several times,while reading, as I place myself in the position of the lovely young protagonist and fall in love for the first time (as opposed to being a 50 something and somewhat love-jaded in the middle of a pandemic blah blah)

But WHY did I like this romance ?

1. Squeaky
Victoria Lynn
Sep 29, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This book blew me out of the water. Quite honestly, I didn’t know what to expect having never read a book by Camden before. But wow. The historical emphasis really inspired me and I had a fantastic time learning about the origin of food laws and requirements, before the FDA was ever invented.

Set amidst one of the sweetest romances I think I’ve ever read, this book was pure perfection. I haven’t really been into romance lately as the traditional sense of the word has been overrun in recent times
Aug 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing
The Spice King is a soaring and tantalizing tale about two very different persons from both sides of the fence who made choice to help their kin and the consequences they face afterward.

I do know this novel does not classify as an historical romance but the blurb told me there was a hint of it inside this historical fiction.
Now, I do think this is my first historical read set this late in history, right at the end of the gilded age. so yes, there is no sizzling scenes but Gray and Annabelle’s fe
Lynda Edwards
Oct 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: keeper-shelf
Elizabeth Camden has long been an author I enjoy, but The Spice King marks the first of a family-based series that is well-written, exciting, mysterious, and one for which the next installment cannot come soon enough! She has created a troubled family empire with characters to root for, even when they make some cringe-worthy decisions, and placed them within a setting that is unique yet accessible.

Camden’s characters are three dimensional and often one of the best parts about her books, but she
Lisa Johnson
Oct 22, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Title: The Spice King (Hope and Glory #1)
Author: Elizabeth Camden
Pages: 352
Year: 2019
Publisher: Bethany
My rating is 5 out of 5 stars.
Annabelle Larkin has a new job as a botanist with the Smithsonian Institute. Her first big assignment is a near impossible task…get an interview with the reclusive Gray Delacroix, the spice king. Gray has spent most of his life up until now traveling the globe in search of new and the best of spices to cement his family’s company as the premier supplier of superio
Oct 15, 2019 rated it really liked it
Set in Washington DC in 1900, Annabelle Larkin is a college grad from Kansas who lands a temporary job as a junior botanist for the Smithsonian. In order to secure a permanent position, she must gain access to the private Delacroix plant collection. Gray Delacroix has worked for two decades traveling the globe for exotic plants and spices to rebuild his family’s business. There are a few twists and turns and I loved how Annabelle and Gray are constantly thrown together. There is a satisfying end ...more
Lou Allen
The Spice King is set in Washington DC, in 1900, which is a setting and time period in American history that I knew nothing about.

I liked both Gray and Annabelle from the start. They were both strong, feisty and determined to succeed in their own spheres of life.

I liked that they both have close family ties and wanted to help and support the people that mattered to them the most. I particularly enjoyed seeing the way they sparked off each other.

I definitely felt for Annabelle who was caught up i
Sep 21, 2019 rated it really liked it
Alright alright, I have to admit this one's pretty good. xD I'm normally not a huge fan of Elizabeth Camden because her books just aren't the most realistic in the romance category (which this one wasn't exactly either but still a lot better).

Can I start off by saying the jobs of main characters are COOL? Come on, a botanist and spice empire founder? It can't really get cooler than that in my opinion. xD I also applaud Camden for the unique plot of this book -- it's definitely unlike anything I'
Sep 11, 2019 rated it really liked it
Another fantastic read from Camden! Peel back the cover (cleverly designed with vanilla coloring) and enter a gilded world flavored with the spices of romance, heartache, and political intrigue. The characters are loveable and relatable, and the story one to devour - leaving you grateful for the promise of more to come! Definitely one to add to your historical fiction collection.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. All op
Dec 06, 2019 rated it it was ok
I normally love Camden for her unique historic perspective, her thorough research and attention to detail, and her vibrant characters that are larger than life. This book seemed to be missing the last element and I was disappointed. I never developed a real interest in either character and their relationship seemed tepid.
Kellyn Roth
Oct 14, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: review-to-come
This was an excellent book!

My own annoyances? Annabelle's parents rubbed me wrong, and the whole plotline with Elaine just seemed ... weird. Out of place. The ending was also a little rushed.

But I enjoyed the book so much overall that I couldn't give it less than five stars! Gray and Annabelle were both awesome, and I loved seeing their story unfold!
Randi Annie Framnes
Secrecy and scandal all the way to the top

This new series, set in Washington DC 1900, brings a brand new perspective to the genre, as it focuses on spices and food production. We get to know young Smithsonian botanist Annabelle who tries to get access to the Delacroix private plant collection and to the owner himself, the reclusive Gray Delacroix.
The plot progressed in an unusual way which I enjoyed. I thought the main theme would be the spice trade and food production issues. That ended up bei
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