Historical Heartbeats welcomes Author Jessie Clever introducing her new release, The Duke and the Wallflower. Jessie will giveaway an ebook copy of Once Upon a Page, the first book in the Shadowing London series to a commentor on the day of the post!
Shunned by a society that puts attractiveness above all else, Lady Eliza Darby’s wallflower status keeps her from getting the one thing she wants most, namely, to be a mother. But when her scorned older sister returns home to see all of her sisters wed in happy matches, it may be Eliza’s only chance to secure a husband and have the children she so desires.
Jilted in a publicly humiliating display, Dax Kane, the Duke of Ashbourne, has sworn off love forever and has no wish to wed. But when the title demands it, he selects the most perfect candidate for the position: Lady Eliza Darby, a wallflower so unattractive he won’t be in danger of falling in love with her. But the Jilted Duke will soon discover looks have nothing to do with love.
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Enjoy an Excerpt of The Duke and the Wallflower
Lady Eliza Darby, daughter of the sixth Duke of Ravenwood, sister to the now seventh Duke of Ravenwood, was determined not to upset her stomach in the middle of the Duchess of Sudsbury’s ball.
It would just be rude.
“I’m certain Viv will be considerate in her machinations,” Louisa said from Eliza’s left.
Johanna scoffed to her right. “When has Viv ever been considerate of anything that affected one of us?”
Louisa frowned. “Do be kind, Jo. You know Viv is only trying to protect us.”
This roused Eliza from her determination to not upset her stomach across the ballroom floor.
“Protect us?” She shook her head. “She’s not so much protecting us as hoping to keep us from finding our husbands abed with an opera singer like she did.”
The words came out more forcefully than she had intended, her rattled nerves driving her usual cutting wit toward unsavory sarcasm. She pressed a hand to her stomach, willing it to settle.
Jo snorted in her lemonade and peered around sheepishly as if hoping no one spied her unladylike behavior. But as was the case with all of the Duchess of Sudsbury’s events, the night was a crush, and no one was paying particular attention to the forgotten Darby sisters.
“Is that really something one can prevent another person from experiencing?” Louisa posed.
“Surely not,” Jo responded, having recovered from her lemonade dousing. “I think that only serves to illustrate the futility of what she is trying to do.”
Louisa shrugged. “I must commend her. After all, there’s nothing to compel her to help us now that Andrew is the duke. It’s rather perceptive of her to think he may not want three unwed sisters underfoot when searching for a wife.”
Johanna lifted her chin. “I see nothing wrong with the matter. We are family after all. Andrew’s duchess should accept us.”
Eliza gave her younger sister a sharp look. “Are you mad? Even I find it difficult to accept us.”
She didn’t miss the soft laugh Louisa attempted to hide.
Jo frowned and rolled her glass of lemonade between her hands. “Still. I see nothing wrong with the current situation.”
The current situation was three unwed sisters living in the home of their unattached brother, the Duke of Ravenwood now that Father had passed the previous year. With Mother succumbing to the influenza when Johanna was only two, it had left far too many females in the hands of an absentminded father to see them safely off and into society. That was why Viv was the only one of the Darby sisters to wed, and then only because Aunt Phyllis had been alive to sponsor her. Aunt Phyllis had promptly died before the next season, leaving Eliza without proper guidance. Father had tried, of course. Each girl had gotten…well, it resembled a season at least.
But as all three were still unwed, it was obvious their father’s attempt had rather lacked in ambition.
About the Author
Jessie decided to be a writer because the job of Indiana Jones was already filled.
Taking her history degree dangerously, Jessie tells the stories of courageous heroines, the men who dared to love them, and the world that tried to defeat them.
Jessie lives in New Hampshire with her husband and two overly opinionated Basset hounds