The title The Orchid Affair may have you believing that this is a lurid romance novel like the infamous Harlequin romances. Fortunately for me I found it to be a fun mystery with a touch of romance thrown in for good measure.
This is the first book by Lauren Willig that I have read so I wasn't sure what to expect. This is a series she is writing called The Pink Carnation series. The flowers are actually based on the names given to a group of secret spies during Napoleon's reign in France.
In The Orchid Affair we find newly annointed spy, Laura Grey (The Silver Orchid) on her first mission posing as the governess for the deputy minister of police. Her job is to find out if the plot to get a prince of royal blood back on the throne has been discovered. Little does she know that the deputy minister is also working to do the same thing! As he is forced to show his hand sooner than he wanted, Laura must decide if she can trust him enough to help him.
She decides he is on her side and they are forced to flee the country with the prince and the deputy minister's family. Since his wife has died Laura and deputy minister Andre Jaouen pose as husband and wife with a traveling theatre troupe. During their journey out of France they find they have feelings for each other and romance ensues.
If you are looking for a fun book with a good story, interesting characters and page turning action you will enjoy reading The Orchid Affair. You can safely give this book as a gift to Mom, Grandma, Aunts, Teachers, etc. without having to worry about the content. No steamy pages, definitely a PG-13 rating!