London's social season is in full swing, and Victorian aristocracy is atwitter over a certain gentleman who claims to be the direct descendant of Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette. Adding to their fascination with all things French, an audacious cat burglar is systematically stealing valuable items that once belonged to the ill–fated queen.
But things take a dark turn. The owner of one of the pilfered treasures is found murdered after the theft is reported in the newspapers, and the mysterious thief develops a twisted obsession with Lady Emily Ashton. It takes all of Lady Emily's wit and perseverance to unmask her stalker and ferret out the murderer, while faced with a brewing scandal that threatens both her reputation and her romance with the dashing Colin Hargreaves.
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The daughter of two philosophy professors, I grew up surrounded by books. I was convinced from an early age that I was born in the wrong century and spent much of my childhood under the dining room table pretending it was a covered wagon. Even there, I was never without a book in hand and loved reading and history more than anything. I studied English Literature and Medieval History at the University of Notre Dame. Writing is a natural offshoot of reading, and my first novel, And Only to Deceive, was published in 2005. I'm the New York Times Bestselling author of the long-running Lady Emily Series as well as the novel Elizabeth: The Golden Age. One of the best parts of being an author is seeing your books translated, and I'm currently in love with the Japanese editions of the Emily books.
I played nomad for a long time, living in Indiana, Amsterdam, London, Wyoming, Vermont, Connecticut, and Tennessee before settling down. My husband, the brilliant British novelist Andrew Grant (I may be biased but that doesn't mean I'm wrong) and I now divide our time between Chicago and Wyoming. He makes sure I get my English characters right, and I make sure his American ones sound American.
Blending romance and historical mystery, Alexander has delightful fun with both genres. Rich, young widow Lady Emily Ashton occasionally has tea with the queen, but she isn't exactly a perfect Victorian lady. Pretty and poised though she may be, her preference for port and cigars, her devotion to both "popular" novels and classic Greek literature (which she reads in Greek), and her involvement in solving the mystery of her husband's death (And Only to Deceive, 2005) have made her the subject of plenty of gossip. Her forthright opinions stir up chitchat once again when she becomes curious about the theft of several items once owned by Marie Antoinette and about a new gentleman on the social scene, who claims to be an heir to the throne of France. Alexander's witty treatment of the trivial pursuits of the aristocracy, coupled with an engaging mystery and a deliciously flirtatious romance between Emily and handsome Colin Hargreaves, makes for entertaining reading for those who like historical mysteries that don't take themselves all that seriously. Stephanie Zvirin
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Book Description William Morrow, 2007. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # DADAX0061174149
Book Description William Morrow, 2007. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # 0061174149
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