London, 1790: Lizbeth isn’t like all the other middle-class girls her age, she doesn’t want to get married just to ensure her future and then depend on a man; so, during a ball where her aunt hopes to find a suitable young man for her, she escapes and goes to the library instead – where she meets a man who impresses her with his knowledge on philosophy and literature! She still insists that she doesn’t intend to get married; though, which amuses the handsome young man who calls himself ‘Roddam’.
At a masked ball a few days later, she is introduced to the Duke of Annick, who resembles Roddam a lot – and then Roddam himself turns up! The mystery about the resemblance is resolved very soon: Sebastian, the Earl of Roddam, is the Duke’s cousin. They start flirting during the evening, but then a misunderstanding occurs, and they split.
Weeks later, they meet again and the misunderstanding is resolved; despite the attraction they feel towards each other, they drift apart again, though, while Lizbeth’s sister Charlotte gets engaged and married to the Duke.
Lizbeth spends some time in Cornwall with her father, while Sebastian in Northumberland can’t forget her; they start exchanging letters. Then, Charlotte writes to her saying she’s unhappy with her husband and begs her to come, and at the Duke’s estate, she meets Sebastian again. Finally, she agrees to marry him – but he’s still burdened by a dark secret from his past…
An uplifting read, romantic and heart-warming, with a nice feel for the period and sympathetic protagonists. Every fan of historical romance will surely enjoy this!