Trent brings turbulent London to life in By The King’s Design. There is plenty of conspiracy, revolution, and trend following. It is a good thing Belle does not act like a normal woman of the time, of course if she did she wouldn’t be in most of the situations she finds herself in. But where would the fun be in that?
Royal court is painted to be everything you expect, deceit and brown nosing run rampant. Belle has help navigating the shark infested waters in the form of Mr. Nash. He is only one of the many well rounded characters that affect Belle’s world. Her brother Wesley could be said to have the strongest impact with his poor decisions that may all be fueled by his closet addiction to opium. Even the Prince Regent is caught under Belle’s spell and grants her his favor, though she keeps her backbone and deny his physical advances. Out of all of them the one man she should place her trust in is the one man she can’t let her guard down around, Put. Put is a talented cabinetmaker and he may just be what saves her.
This is a true historical fiction, very descriptive and accurate. Though all of that made the beginning part of the book drag, the prince turned out to be an overweight spoiled man and Belle’s interactions with him were tedious. Once you reach the middle the action kicks up a notch and holds onto it till the end, making it a pleasurable read.