Friday, September 8, 2017

Book Review: Refuge for Masterminds by Kathleen Baldwin

Refuge for Masterminds 
Author: Kathleen Baldwin
Series: Stranje House (Book 3)
Publication: Tor Teen (May 23, 2017)

Description: It’s 1814. Napoleon has escaped his imprisonment on Elba. Britain is at war on four fronts. And at Stranje House, a School for Unusual Girls, five young ladies are secretly being trained for a world of spies, diplomacy, and war….

Napoleon’s invasion of England is underway and someone at Stranje House is sneaking information to his spies. Lady Jane Moore is determined to find out who it is. If anyone can discover the traitor, it is Janefor, according to headmistress Emma Stranje, Lady Jane is a mastermind.

Jane doesn’t consider herself a mastermind. It’s just that she tends to grasp the facts of a situation quickly, and by so doing, she’s able to devise and implement a sensible course of action. Is Jane enough of a mastermind to save the brash young American inventor Alexander Sinclair, her friends at Stranje House, and possibly England itself?

Fans of genre-blending, romance, and action will love this Regency-era alternate history novel filled with spunky heroines, handsome young lords, and dastardly villains―the third in the Stranje House series. Don’t miss the first two books: A School for Unusual Girls and Exile for Dreamers.

My Thoughts: This is Lady Jane's story. Lady Jane was sent to Stranje house by her older brothers after her parents' deaths. She thinks of herself as plain and average and can't figure out why her friends love her. However, she is being groomed to be a mastermind since she has a strong ability to plan and think three or four steps ahead of everyone. This comes in quite handy since the young ladies of Stranje House and the patronesses of British society are all spies trying to keep Napoleon from conquering England in this alternate history story.

Lady Jane also has a secret that she has been keeping since just before her parents died. This secret makes her believe that she needs to stay away from London and society or face changes she doesn't want in her life.

Lady Jane is also falling in love with inventor Alexander Sinclair who is a brash American who has developed a working steam boat which could alter the course of the war but only if they can get the prototype to London and the Navy before it is captured by the evil Lady Daneska and her partner the Ghost.

The banter between Jane and Alexander was entertaining as the two sparred. I liked the relationships between the girls at Stranje House. They have become the family that Jane never had since hers were dissolute gamesters who never valued her.

Fans of alternate history and intrepid young women will enjoy this third book in the Stranje House series.

Favorite Quote:
Lady Castlereagh laces her hands across her broad middle and taps one finger. "I suppose you think it's a trifle too soon?"

"I thought it best you meet her first." Miss Stranje joins them as they close ranks around me, speaking of me as if I'm not staring straight into their faces.
I bought this one. You can buy your copy here.


  1. Ooh this is a fun series. I liked this one too. I liked the banter as well and the Patronesses were kinda fun. :)

    Good stuff.

  2. This sounds like a series I would like. I will check it out. Thanks for sharing.


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