Gracie (His Captive Lady) charms and entices with this launch of the Regency-era Chance Sisters series. Orphaned governess Abigail Chantry receives the astonishing news that her younger sister, Jane, has been abducted and is captive in a brothel. Abby rescues Jane with the assistance of housemaid Daisy and fellow captive Damaris; the four bond together but struggle to make ends meet. Desperate, Abby breaks into a house—and meets ailing, charming Lady Beatrice Davenham, who has nothing worth stealing but could use some company. She takes in the four “Chance” sisters as her purported nieces, but the deception falters upon the return from overseas of her handsome nephew, Max. Abby’s warmth and caring nature shine from the first moment, and Max’s dedication to his family and friends make him worthy of her love. Layers of secrets and deft characterization make for a deep, rich story that will leave readers starry-eyed. (Feb.)
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It's the perfect situation, until Lady Beatrice's dashing and arrogant nephew, Max, Lord Davenham, returns from the Orient-and discovers an impostor running his household . . .
A romantic entanglement was never the plan for these stubborn, passionate opponents-but falling in love may be as inevitable as the falling of autumn leaves . . .
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"Narrator Alison Larkin's diverse English accents set the mood for this warm story of love, friendship, and class in English society." ---AudioFile
"Narrator Alison Larkin's diverse English accents set the mood for this warm story of love, friendship, and class in English society." AudioFile
Abigail Chantry sprints across London rooftops and into the window of an abandoned mansion in search of something to sell in order to save her sister and friends from a life on the streets. What she doesn't expect is to be greeted by an elderly lady asking, "Have you come to kill me?" and then being taken in by the woman. But Lady Beatrice Davenham needs support, and becoming Lady Beatrice's nieces improves things remarkably for Abby and her "sisters"—until the annoying Lord Davenham comes to call. Delightful Jane Austen quotes introduce each chapter and add to the fun. VERDICT With a pair of beautifully matched protagonists and some particularly despicable villains, this funny, dangerously addictive page-turner is a hands-down Regency winner; the rest of the series can't come fast enough. Gracie (Bride by Mistake) lives in Melbourne, Australia.
After governess Abigail Chantry saves her sister and two friends from abduction and ruin, the four women determine to survive together, finding a surprising champion in an elderly baroness--much to the chagrin of her handsome nephew. When Abigail Chantry receives a mysterious message that her beautiful sister has been abducted and taken to a brothel, she races to save her and ends up with three young women to look out for. Bringing them to her home gets her sacked, so they rent a tiny room and look for work, hoping for some miracle that will keep them off the streets. Instead, they meet Lady Beatrice, an ill, elderly baroness who is practically imprisoned by the criminally neglectful servants living off her. Abby takes charge of Lady Bea's household, running off the servants and hiring a small crew of new ones, and the four young women--who call themselves the Chance sisters--begin to nurse the invalid back to health. At the same time, Lady Bea's nephew, Max, who has been out of the country rebuilding his fortune, comes home to find his aunt thin and sick and blames the mysterious Abby Chance, who seems to have an alarming sway over his aunt. Confronting her with his suspicions, he is astonished when the woman counterattacks, admonishing him for abandoning his aunt and placing the blame for Lady Bea's condition squarely at his feet. Max investigates and learns the truth of his aunt's troubles and how the young women--whom Lady Bea has taken to calling her nieces--saved her. It doesn't answer the question of where they came from or what their motives are, but soon Max is convinced Abby Chance is the woman he's waited for all of his life. Unfortunately, he's betrothed to another, and danger lurks from the girls' past, so Max and Abby must fight for their chance at happiness. Historical romance author Gracie is known for her nuanced, unconventional characters and rich, original plot lines. This book, first of a planned quartet, doesn't disappoint. A complex, charming heartwarmer that celebrates love, brave heroines and the miracle of second chances.