STORY: A runaway countess finds love when she least expects it…but she can’t hide from her past forever.
Elizabeth, Lady Beauchamp, fears for her life. When she discovers her dissolute and long-estranged husband has syphilis—and he wants to beget an heir no matter the cost—she flees to a remote part of Scotland to begin a new life as the widowed governess, Mrs. Beth Eliott at Eilean Tor Castle.
When Mrs. Eliott unexpectedly arrives on his doorstep, the reclusive and recently widowed Marquess of Rothsburgh is both irritated and intrigued. No longer in need of a governess—his young daughter now resides with his sister’s family in Edinburgh—he proposes the beautiful widow fill a position of a different kind…
Torn between staying true to her marriage vows and her wanton attraction to the devilishly handsome marquess, Elizabeth struggles against the temptation to become his mistress. But living a lie is not easy when you have fallen in love. And secrets always have a way of coming out…
REVIEW: Harcourt House, London – September 1815
Lady Elizabeth Harcourt, is preparing to flee from her husband, Hugh de Lancey Harcourt, the Earl of Beauchamp. During the few years that they have been married, Hugh has treated Elizabeth with complete disdain and has ignored her. Elizabeth has just received a letter from Hugh’s lover warning her that Hugh has the pox, or syphilis, and he has given it to her. Then, Hugh tells her he wants to make a rare visit to her to get an heir upon her. She realizes she must run away immediately. As she has worked with an organization that helps to find employment for the widows of the war, she knows that a position is available as a governess. With a few clothes packed, she manages to escapes the house.
Two weeks later. Aberdeenshire Scotland
Lady Elizabeth now calls herself Mrs. Beth Eliott, a widow, traveling to apply for the position of governess at Eileen Tor Castle in the town of Torhaven. After battling severe rains and a treacherous route to the Castle, she arrives soaked to find a huge, unwelcoming looking Castle. James Huntly, the Sixth Marquess of Rothsburgh, lives in his home with a small staff and his two deerhounds, Rosencrantz and Guildenstern. Beth soon finds that Isabelle, wife of the Marquess has recently passed away, leaving him with a small daughter, Annabelle. Beth is dismayed to find that Annabelle has been sent to stay with her aunt as most everyone at the Castle is down with the ague. After her long and exhausting journey, Beth soon succumbs to the illness as well.
The only person to have escaped the illness is The Marquess, so he is the only one to care for her when she lies unconscious for days with a raging fever. When she finally regains consciousness again, she is weak but determined to leave the castle as his daughter is not there for her to care for. But, she is still too ill to do so. After she slowly regains her strength, she gets to know James fairly well. He does not want her to go so he offers her the position of Housekeeper which she gratefully accepts. However, their daily closeness begins to kindle other feelings between them that sparks a fire.
But what of Hugh? Beth is still a married woman. How long can she hide from him before her whereabouts are discovered?
There is lots more to this story and I have given enough away. Suffice to say that the reader will truly enjoy this story of love, passion, and longing. I enjoyed the book very much and am delighted to have found another really good author!
Connie for b2b