THE UGLY DUCHESS
With the latest in her fabulous fairy-tale series, James’ twist on the Ugly Ducking sweeps readers into an uplifting love story with just the right amount of poignancy, tenderness, sensuality and pure romance to make readers sigh. The underlying lesson is that, with confidence and belief in yourself, any woman can conquer the world and, if she wants, win the man she desires. Kudos to James for encouraging us all to be ourselves and grab what life has to offer.
Theodora “Theo” Saxby only felt truly special once: the summer her best friend, James Ryburn, became ill and lost his sight. It was Daisy, as only he calls her, who kept him company until he was well. When James’ father gambles away Theo’s fortune, James must marry her to cover up the embezzlement. James would marry Theo for no reason other than he loves her, and he prays she never uncovers the truth. But she does and scandalizes the ton by separating from James, who forges his own future by going to sea. When James comes back seven years later to reclaim his Daisy, can a woman of grace, popularity and style love the pirate who has returned? (AVON, Sep., 400 pp., $7.99)