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I’m in the middle of An Extraordinary Union by Alyssa Cole. Set in the south during the Civil War, it’s the story and romance of two pro-Union agents, one black and one white, attempting to thwart southern war efforts.

It’s an okay read so far, and the Civil War setting is interesting and refreshingly different from my usual Regency London fare. But I regularly get yanked out of the story by the use of modern language. For example, the hero sees Elle’s smile “morph into a grimace of terror.” At another point, one of Susie’s suitors says something bluntly, “the art of subtlety apparently not in his wheelhouse.” Also, the hero, looking at the heroine, notes that “no show girl decked out in sequins and lace had ever been sexier.”

Pretty sure “morph,” the phrase “in one’s wheelhouse,” and this use of “sexier” are anachronistic for this 19th century setting.

Also, there are some minor editing issues, mostly no big deal, but this had me scratching my head: “…If there’s the slightest suspicion I’m from the North, we could be killed. I’ve had some very close calls for far less innocuous things.” Shouldn’t that be far more innocuous?