Lord Rupert Carrington, heir apparent to the Marquess of Lansdowne and former captain in His Majesty’s Royal Navy, cannot forget the girl he loved in his youth, who died when he left her to fight in the war against Napoleon. Guilt-ridden, Rupert buries his regret by helping the detectives of Bow Street take down criminals. But when Rupert ferrets out a ring of smugglers and is marked for death, the prince regent banishes him from London until the villains are arrested and brought to court.
On the first day of Rupert’s exile to the “wilds of Devon,” he meets Alexandra Dancy, whose beauty, extraordinary courage, and unaccountable oneriness stir in him a degree of affection and admiration he has never before felt for any lady. As fate or Providence would have it, Alexandra and her family, whose property backs his on the other side of a canal, have been hired to provide Rupert’s meals and to care for his house and stables.
When Rupert’s friendship and warm attentions awaken Alexandra’s heart, she suffers the torment of loving a man she believes is of a higher social class than he pretends, and therefore beyond her reach. The impoverished Dancys hide their own aristocratic origins to protect a dark secret known to only one man—Cecil Bedford, a blackguard of the first order, who wields a cruel power over Alexandra and her family. Can Rupert save her from Bedford’s clutches and topple the seemingly insurmountable barriers to winning her love and her hand?
At six and twenty, the impoverished Lydia Hathaway has endured bleak years of heartbreak, longing for a love that never came. Her deceased father's foolhardiness has left her family bankrupt, and Lydia is eventually left no alternative but to take a position as the companion and governess to Susan Ashcroft of Danbury Park in Surrey. During the first days at her post, Lydia pines bitterly for a life she believes forever lost. Anxious for peace, she rambles one morning across the muddy wilds of the Ashcroft estate where she has a most unimaginable encounter with the notorious Lord Connor Denton. As their paths continue to cross, Lydia falls ever deeper in love with the charming rogue while battling against his growing assault on her heart.
ENGLISH HISTORICAL FICTION AUTHORS
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