Message From The Author

Author's Message

In one of his most lyrical poems, Lord Byron compared a beautiful, enigmatic woman to the darkness of night. It's an apt analogy, isn't it? For many men, feminine beauty is mysterious and haunting. To the forbidding Camden Rutledge, Earl of Treyhern, it's also ephemeral, since the most beautiful thing in his life long ago slipped from his grasp.

Welcome to the picturesque English village of Cheston-on-the-Water. Meet the outrageous Rutledges of Chalcote Court, where scandal is served up like a soup course and dangerous secrets lurk everywhere.

Helene de Severs is one of their secrets. The daughter of London's most outrageous widow, Helene has spent the last ten years struggling to make a respectable life for herself on the Continent. Now she is renowned among European psychiatrists for her gift for healing children. She is no longer an impetuous young girl, but when fate sends her back to England, the country she left in disgrace, both she and her new employer are in for a shock.

By sheer force of will, the implacable Earl of Treyhern has hauled his profligate family back from the brink of ruin. But his is no easy life. A disastrous marriage has left him with a traumatized child, and his young hellion of a brother is just one step ahead of the bailiffs. But when Treyhern's dissolute father drops dead while cavorting in bed with the governess, the earl's infamous temper is truly tested.

Still, Treyhern is confident he can bend everyone to his will, yet the moment his new governess steps from his carriage, Treyhern's reserve is shattered by a wave of longing he'd long thought dead. This bold, beautiful woman is not who he had expected. Or is she?

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