An Edwardian-era duke and duchess are torn apart by the expectations of their families and the death of their child.
Seraphina Bevingstoke, Duchess of Haven fully admits that she trapped her husband into marriage. But that was only because she loved him so much and was sure he would never offer for a social mushroom like her. Unfortunately, her husband, Malcolm, was still having a hard time forgiving her when their baby daughter died at birth. Overwhelmed with the pain of losing Malcolm’s love and their child, Sera ran away to America. Now, nearly three years later, she’s back in London, seeking a divorce on the floor of Parliament, determined to put her disastrous marriage behind her. She needs the divorce so she can own property in her own name. She wants to be the sole proprietor and most cherished entertainer at the Singing Sparrow, a tavern in Covent Garden where she sings on stage in disguise. What Sera doesn’t know is that Malcolm has never stopped searching for her and has no intention of giving her a divorce. He plays along, though, forcing her to help him find a replacement bride at his country estate. Sera sees no choice but to bring reinforcements in the form of her scandalous sisters. MacLean (A Scot in the Dark, 2016, etc.) delivers a dense, richly woven tale of betrayal and grief and family loyalty. The main characters lack self-confidence, believing themselves unlovable and therefore not trusting each other’s love. But they are lovable, to each other and to the reader. The only disappointment is that MacLean misses an opportunity to depict a meaningful marriage in spite of infertility. Children, it turns out, are still central to a successful fictional marriage.
A thrilling story of love reborn.