The Passion of the Purple Plumeria (Paperback)

A Pink Carnation Novel

By Lauren Willig

Berkley, 9780451414724, 480pp.

Publication Date: August 6, 2013

Other Editions of This Title:
Digital Audiobook (8/5/2013)

List Price: 16.00*
* Individual store prices may vary.



Lauren Willig’s Pink Carnation novels have been hailed as “sheer fun”* and “charming.”** Now she takes readers on an adventure filled with hidden treasure and a devilishly handsome English colonel....

Colonel William Reid has returned home from India to retire near his children, who are safely stowed at 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.

Because she served as second-in-command to the Pink Carnation, one of England’s most intrepid spies, it would be impossible for Gwendolyn Meadows to give up the intrigue of Paris for a quiet life in the English countryside—especially when she’s just overheard news of an alliance forming between Napoleon and an Ottoman Sultan. But, when the Pink Carnation’s little sister goes missing from her English boarding school, Gwen reluctantly returns home to investigate the girl’s disappearance.

Thrown together by circumstance, Gwen and William must cooperate to track down the young ladies before others with nefarious intent get their hands on them. But Gwen’s partnership with quick-tongued, roguish William may prove to be even more of an adventure for her than finding the lost girls….


*New York Times Bestselling Author Christina Dodd
**Kirkus Reviews

About the Author

The author of nine previous Pink Carnation novels, Lauren Willig received a graduate degree in English history from Harvard University and a J.D. from Harvard Law School, though she now writes full-time. Willig Lives in New York City.

Praise For The Passion of the Purple Plumeria: A Pink Carnation Novel

“[An] enchanting, exciting, and clever story.” — Romance Reviews Today on THE GARDEN INTRIGUE

“[A] supremely nerve-wracking, sit-on-the-edge-of-your-seat, can’t-sleep-until-everyone-is-safe-read…fabulous…Charming three-dimensional characters, lively action, witty dialogue, and a continuous contemporary story line that enhances the events happening the past.” — Library Journal (starred review) on THE ORCHID AFFAIR

“Willig’s sparkling series continues to elevate the Regency romance genre.” — Kirkus on THE ORCHID AFFAIR

Pride and Prejudice lives on in the pages of Lauren Willig’s Pink Carnation romance-spy series.”
USA Today

“History textbook meets Bridget Jones.” — Marie Claire

“Jane Austen for the modern girl…Sheer fun!” — Christina Dodd

Praise for the Novels of Lauren Willig

“Jane Austen for the modern girl.”—New York Times Bestselling Author Christina Dodd

Pride and Prejudice lives on.”—USA Today

"History textbook meets Bridget Jones."—Marie Claire

“Willig’s series gets better with each addition.”—Booklist

“[This] sparkling series continues to elevate the Regency romance genre.”—Kirkus Reviews


Conversation Starters from

  1. What was your initial opinion of Gwen when she was introduced at the beginning of the novel? Did your feelings about her change as the novel progressed? Did you have any revelations about her that surprised you?
  2. What did you think of the relationship between Colonel Reid and Gwen? What about each of them made them perfectly suited for each another?
  3. What did you think about Gwen’s novel, The Convent of Orsino? Is this a book you would be interested in reading? Do you think it would have been well received by readers at that time?
  4. What are some of the parallels that can be drawn between the historical and modern-day storylines in Passion of the Purple Plumeria? Do the modern and historical characters play off one another? What are the similarities between the couples? What are the differences?
  5. Why do you think Eloise and Colin have put off revealing their true feelings for one another for so long? What do you think is in store for them? Do you think their relationship will survive?
  6. Before he makes off with the fake Jewels of Berar, the Chevalier tells Jane: “I am sure I do not need to tell you how very much I wish the circumstances might have been otherwise.” Do you think they could have had something romantic together if they did not play for opposite teams?
  7. Towards the end of the novel, Jane makes the following proclamation: “Wherever I go next, I go alone.” Do you think her decision to dissolve the League of the Pink Carnation and work alone is a wise one? Why or why not?
  8. What is the significance of the Moon of Berar being a mirror instead of jewels?
  9. Did you think Gwen’s more audacious methods made her an effective spy? Why or why not?
  10. Do you think Jeremy is as villainous as he appears to be? Do you think the relationship between Colin and Jeremy will be repaired for the sake of their great-aunt?
  11. Did you find Gwen’s revelation about her ex-lover and scandalous pregnancy to be surprising? How do you think that experience colored her relationship decisions from that point forward? Do you think she would have lost as much if she had been a man?
  12. How is the theme of passion addressed in the Passion of the Purple Plumeria?