A Change of Fortune (Ladies of Distinction Series #1) [NOOK Book]

Overview

Rollicking Debut from an Exciting New Author

Lady Eliza Sumner is on a mission. Her fortune was the last thing she had left after losing her father, her fiance, and her faith. Now, masquerading as Miss Eliza Sumner governess-at-large, she's determined to find the man who ran off with her fortune, reclaim the money, and head straight back to London.

Mr. Hamilton Beckett, ...
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A Change of Fortune (Ladies of Distinction Series #1)

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Overview

Rollicking Debut from an Exciting New Author

Lady Eliza Sumner is on a mission. Her fortune was the last thing she had left after losing her father, her fiance, and her faith. Now, masquerading as Miss Eliza Sumner governess-at-large, she's determined to find the man who ran off with her fortune, reclaim the money, and head straight back to London.

Mr. Hamilton Beckett, much to his chagrin, is the catch of the season, and all the eyes of New York society--all the female ones, at least--are on him. He has no plans to marry again, especially since his hands are full keeping his business afloat while raising his two children alone.

Eliza's hapless attempts to regain her fortune unexpectedly put her right in Hamilton's path. The discovery of a common nemesis causes them to join forces and, before she knows it, Eliza has a whole retinue of people helping her. Eliza's determination not to trust anyone weakens when everyone's antics and bumbling efforts to assist her make her wonder if there might be more important things than her fortune and independence.

When all of Hamilton's and Eliza's best-laid plans fall by the wayside, it will take a riot of complications for them to realize that God just might have had a better plan in mind all along.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781441260505
  • Publisher: Baker Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 11/1/2012
  • Series: Ladies of Distinction Series , #1
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 320
  • Sales rank: 11,789
  • File size: 918 KB

Meet the Author

Jen Turano, author of A Change of Fortune, A Most Peculiar Circumstance, and A Talent for Trouble, is a graduate of the University of Akron with a degree in Clothing and Textiles. She is a member of ACFW and lives in a suburb of Denver, Colorado. Visit her website at www.jenturano.com.
Jen Turano, author of A Change of Fortune, A Most Peculiar Circumstance, and A Talent for Trouble, is a graduate of the University of Akron with a degree in clothing and textiles. She is a member of ACFW and lives in a suburb of Denver, Colorado. Visit her website at www.jenturano.com.
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Read an Excerpt

A CHANGE of FORTUNE


By Jen Turano

Baker Publishing Group

Copyright © 2012 Jennifer L. Turano
All right reserved.

ISBN: 978-0-7642-1018-1


Chapter One

New York, 1880

Miss Eliza Sumner turned the page of the book she was reading aloud, glancing up and biting back a smile at the unusual sight of her two charges, Grace and Lily, listening attentively to her. She lowered her gaze and continued reading, raising her voice dramatically when she got to a riveting passage regarding a motley band of pirates.

"There you are, Miss Sumner," a voice exclaimed from the doorway.

Eliza set the book aside and hurried to her feet as her employer, Mrs. Cora Watson, advanced into the room.

"I've been searching everywhere for you," Mrs. Watson proclaimed.

As it was a normal occurrence for Eliza to spend her evenings in the schoolroom, she was a bit perplexed by Mrs. Watson's statement, but felt it best to keep that particular thought to herself.

"Here," Mrs. Watson said, thrusting a bundle of silk into Eliza's hands, "I need you to put this on immediately."

"I do beg your pardon, Mrs. Watson, but am I to understand you've taken issue with my gown?"

"Certainly not. Your gown is completely acceptable for the schoolroom, but I need your services at dinner."

"You wish me to serve the meal?"

"Don't be ridiculous," Mrs. Watson said.

Eliza eyed the massive amount of fabric in her hand and cautiously shook it out, unable to suppress a shudder as yard after yard of hideous color unfolded before her eyes. "Is this ... a dinner gown?"

"It is."

"Mother, surely you don't expect Miss Sumner to wear that," Grace said, scurrying to Eliza's side. "Why, it's the most revolting shade of ..." She paused and looked up at Eliza. "What color would you call that?"

"I believe the proper term would be puce," Eliza supplied.

"I think the proper term should be ugly," Lily piped up, joining her sister with her nose wrinkled. "It'll clash with her red hair, Mother."

"I know," Mrs. Watson said, "but it's the only gown I have on hand at the moment." She turned to Eliza. "Please don't take offense at this, Miss Sumner, but you're rather stout in build, and the only member of my family possessed of a similar figure is my aunt Mildred, who just happened to leave this gown the last time she visited."

As Eliza's "stoutness" was the result of layers of linen wrapped around her middle, she took no offense at all over Mrs. Watson's remark. Before she could formulate a suitable response, Grace let out a snort.

"Aunt Mildred only left that gown because she knew it was awful and not of the current fashion. Poor Miss Sumner will barely be able to walk, seeing as how the skirt is so long."

"She'll simply have to make the best of it unless she has a dinner gown of her own to wear."

Eliza bit her lip. While it was true she possessed more than her fair share of dinner gowns, they were currently back in England, and now was hardly the time to ponder that particular subject. She could not allow Mrs. Watson to discover the pesky little fact that she was in actuality Lady Eliza Sumner, not plain Miss, nor could she divulge the fact that her father had been the Earl of Sefton. She cleared her throat. "I'm sorry to say I have no formal attire at my disposal."

"Hmm, pity that," Mrs. Watson replied. "You'll have to wear Aunt Mildred's gown."

"May I be so bold as to ask what you require of me at your dinner?" Eliza asked.

"Oh, forgive me," Mrs. Watson said, wiping her brow absently with the back of her hand. "Agatha's developed spots. You need to take her place at the table."

Eliza stifled a groan. One of the main reasons she'd sought out employment as a governess was so she could remain inconspicuous, and attending a dinner party hosted by one of the upcoming social leaders of New York City was not exactly what she had had in mind when she accepted the position.

"But, Mrs. Watson," Eliza began, "surely you don't believe ..."

"I cannot have an uneven number at the table," Mrs. Watson interrupted. "I finally received an acceptance from the Trumans, and Mr. Watson would not be pleased if I did anything to embarrass him, such as sitting down to dinner with an odd number of guests."

"Father must want to sell Mr. Truman a huge vat of soap," Grace declared.

"It's hardly proper for a young lady, Grace, to discuss business," Mrs. Watson said before turning back to Eliza. "I expect you downstairs in thirty minutes."

"Don't you believe your guests will consider it bad form for me to attend your dinner party?" Eliza asked, wincing when she heard the clear note of desperation in her voice.

Mrs. Watson narrowed her eyes. "Did your letter of reference not state you were proficient in the subject of etiquette?"

"Well, yes, certainly, but ..."

"And did it not also state you are a distant relation of the aristocracy?"

Eliza nodded, knowing perfectly well her "distant relation" to the aristocracy was not very distant.

"Then I would have to assume you've attended a formal dinner in the past."

"I have not attended a formal dinner in quite some time."

"Has that caused you to forget your manners?" Mrs. Watson asked.

"Ahh ... I don't believe so."

"Then there is absolutely no reason for you to balk at my request. I would have to believe you are well equipped to handle the silver."

"I am the governess," Eliza muttered.

"No one needs to know that, dear."

"I would have to believe someone at the dinner table will ask me my name," Eliza said.

"I suggest you tell them you're Miss Sumner."

"What if they ask me more questions?"

Mrs. Watson released a sigh. "My dear, I don't wish to cause you distress, but quite frankly, you are not the type of woman with whom one wishes to enter into conversation at a dinner party."

Eliza swallowed a laugh. Apparently her attempt at disguising her appearance and her true identity could be deemed a success.

"I really must get back downstairs," Mrs. Watson continued, seemingly unaware of the fact that she'd delivered Eliza an insult and a compliment in the same breath. "I have numerous details left unresolved, and I want everything to be perfect." She sent Eliza a nod. "I'll try to find a maid to help you into that gown."

Eliza watched Mrs. Watson walk through the door before shifting her gaze to Grace and Lily. "Our story will have to wait for another day."

"We were just getting to the good part," Grace complained. "I'm sorry my mother is being so demanding. She used to be somewhat fun."

"I don't remember her being fun," Lily remarked.

"That's because you were born after Father's business became successful," Grace said. "Mother wasn't responsible for hosting so many parties, and I'm afraid it's given her a bit of an edge." She sighed. "Agatha remembers a time when even Father was fun."

"Speaking of Agatha," Eliza said, "what type of spots do you think she has at the moment? Should someone send for a physician?"

"She hardly needs a physician," Grace said with a grin. "Agatha is only suffering from rebellious spots because Mother invited gentlemen tonight who are known to be eligible bachelors."

"Am I to understand there's nothing wrong with her?" Eliza asked.

"She's a bit crazy, but honestly, Agatha's always been that way."

Eliza felt her lips twitch. "Maybe I should pay Agatha a visit and call her on her ruse so I won't have to don this gown and make a complete cake of myself."

"You talk funny sometimes," Lily said.

"I imagine it comes from being British."

"Your accent is charming," Grace said. "I bet if I spoke like you all the boys would fall in love with me."

"As you are too young to even contemplate boys, being all of eleven years old, I think we'll return to the subject at hand. Where is your sister?" Eliza asked.

"She's gone into hiding and won't turn up until after dinner," Grace said.

"Wonderful," Eliza muttered before she walked over to the discarded book, picked it up, and handed it to Grace. "You may continue reading this to your sister, and you'll have to fill me in on the story line when we meet again two days from now. Tomorrow is Sunday, my day off, but I'll be waiting with bated breath to discover what happens with the pirates."

She turned on her heel and strode into the hallway, making her way to her room. She closed the door and allowed her shoulders to slump as she gulped in deep breaths of air, the reality of her situation setting in.

This was a disaster.

She moved to her bed and dropped the dinner gown on top of the covers, spreading the fabric out even as her eyes narrowed. There was no way she would be able to fit into it, no matter how "stout" Mrs. Watson claimed her aunt to be, because the gown had a cinched waist, a waist that would balk if she tried to squeeze her stuffing into it.

She unbuttoned the front of her serviceable gown and shrugged out of it, her hands moving immediately to the front ties of her specially made corset. She made short shrift of unlacing the ribbons and began unwinding one of the strips of linen she'd used to pad her figure. She dropped the cloth to the ground, retied her corset, and then snagged the gown off the bed, wrestling it over her head. It got stuck halfway down her body.

She squirmed out of it, unlaced her corset, and unwound another strip of cloth, her fingers moving rapidly as she suddenly recalled that Mrs. Watson was supposed to send a maid to assist her. She squeezed into the gown and buttoned it up the best she could before she scooped the abandoned linen off the floor and stuffed it beneath her mattress. She struggled to button the last few buttons, but finally admitted defeat when she simply couldn't reach them.

She could only hope the maid didn't notice anything unusual. She grinned. Honestly, if she didn't look unusual at the moment, she'd eat this gown. She moved to the mirror, grabbing hold of a chest of drawers when she tripped on the hem. She twitched the fabric out of her way and straightened, her grin widening when she got a good look at her reflection.

She looked like an opera singer.

Large blue eyes stared back at her out of a pale face, which had a smattering of freckles marching along the bridge of her nose. Her grin turned into a smile, showing straight white teeth and causing a dimple to pop out on her right cheek. Her smile faded as her eyes lifted to her hair, which she had pulled tightly away from her face and secured in a matronly bun and which in no way resembled the intricate styles of her past. She shook herself. There was no time for reflection just now.

Her gaze traveled the length of her body, and her mouth dropped open. Although she'd managed to get the gown over her middle, it now gaped around the neckline and she was at a loss as to how to fix that little problem. She tugged the material up only to have it slide back down the moment she let go.

"Pins," she declared, spinning on her heel and stumbling over to a table, which held a battered jewelry box some former governess had apparently left behind. She rummaged around in it for a minute and managed to locate a few pins. She jabbed them into the fabric and moved back to the mirror.

"That's hardly better, but it will have to do," she told her reflection.

Would anyone be able to recognize her? Her gaze lingered on the dumpy and unusually shaped woman staring back at her. Who would ever believe she'd once been the most sought after woman in London? What would her friends think if they could see her now?

"You don't have any friends," she muttered, turning away from the mirror as a knock sounded on her door.

"Come in."

The door opened, and a maid by the name of Mary entered the room. "Mrs. Watson asked me to assist you, but it seems you managed nicely on your own."

"I still have a few buttons I can't reach."

Mary stepped to Eliza's side and quickly buttoned her up. "What an interesting color."

"Lily thinks it clashes with my hair," Eliza said.

"It does at that, but I must say, it's not all horrible. The color draws attention to your eyes."

"That will never do." Eliza moved back to the jewelry box and pushed the contents around, delighted when she located an old pair of spectacles. She shoved them on her face and then promptly lost her balance as the room swam out of focus.

"I didn't know you wore spectacles," Mary said.

Eliza thought Mary might be frowning in her direction, but as she couldn't clearly see her face, she wasn't sure. "I only wear them on very rare occasions, dinners mostly. Spectacles make it easier to see the silver."

"I've never heard of such a thing, but if you can't see the silver, I suppose you should keep them on," Mary said. "Pity though, seeing as you have such lovely eyes and Mr. Hamilton Beckett is expected tonight." Mary lowered her voice. "He's the most sought after gentleman in New York."

"Then I would have to believe it would be difficult for me to garner his attention with or without my spectacles," Eliza said wryly. "I am the governess, and the only reason I've been pressed into service is because Agatha has developed spots."

Mary made a tsking noise under her breath.

Eliza frowned. "Do you know about Agatha's spots?"

"The entire house knows about the spots."

"Does Agatha make a habit of refusing to attend her mother's dinners?" Eliza asked.

"No, but I believe the poor dear has finally had enough of her mother's schemes. I overheard them earlier today, and they were engaged in a bit of a tiff. I don't believe Miss Agatha appreciated the fact that Mrs. Watson was forcing her to sit next to Mr. Beckett at dinner."

"I thought you said Mr. Beckett was the most sought after gentleman in New York?"

"He is, but I think Miss Agatha finds him too old," Mary said.

"How old is he?"

"He might be thirty."

"Thirty is hardly old."

"Not to you."

Eliza stifled a laugh. Here was further proof her disguise was a success, seeing as how she was only twenty-one years old, not much older than Agatha. She sent Mary a smile and then headed for the door. "Thank you for your help, Mary."

"Maybe you should say some extra prayers to help you get though the evening," Mary suggested.

Since Eliza was less than pleased with God at the moment, seeing as how He had not helped her sort through the mess she currently found herself in, she ignored Mary's statement.

"Would you like me to help you down the stairs?" Mary asked as Eliza ran smack-dab into the doorframe.

"That won't be necessary," Eliza said as she sailed through the door, ruining the effect by tripping on the trailing fabric of her gown.

"I'll say those prayers for you," Mary called as Eliza straightened and slowly walked down the hall.

The steps proved to be quite the obstacle, and she finally had to push the spectacles down her nose in order to navigate them. She paused on the first landing to tug her hem out from under her feet, and as she did so, she saw a pair of eyes peering at her through a crack in a door.

"Agatha," she muttered.

The door shut with a snap.

Eliza considered marching over to the door and demanding Agatha take her rightful place at the table, but the arrival of another maid distracted her. She shoved the spectacles back up her nose.

"Miss Sumner, Mrs. Watson is asking about you," the maid said. "My, don't you look ... fetching."

Eliza released an unladylike snort. "I think hideous would be a more appropriate word."

"You might have a point," the maid said. "Do you need help getting down to the dining room, since you seem to be dragging a large amount of skirt behind you?"

"I'll be fine," Eliza said, sending the closed door one last look before she continued on her way, vowing to herself she would have a few words with Agatha if she survived the evening.

After what seemed like hours, but was only minutes, she finally managed to reach the end of the stairs and cautiously made her way to the dining room.

"Miss Sumner," Mrs. Watson exclaimed, appearing at Eliza's side. "What took you so long?"

"I apologize, Mrs. Watson, but I had a bit of difficulty maneuvering down the steps."

Eliza couldn't be certain, but she thought she saw Mrs. Watson's lips quiver.

"Oh dear, that gown is worse than I imagined," Mrs. Watson declared as she took Eliza by the arm and peered into her face. "I must say, those spectacles are the perfect accessory. They make you look eccentric, which will go far in explaining the gown."

As Eliza was trying for inconspicuous, the last thing she wanted to hear was that she'd managed "eccentric."

"This is a horrible idea," she mumbled.

"Nonsense," Mrs. Watson said, steering Eliza through a crowd of people and coming to a halt in front of an incredibly long table.

(Continues...)



Excerpted from A CHANGE of FORTUNE by Jen Turano Copyright © 2012 by Jennifer L. Turano. Excerpted by permission of Baker Publishing Group. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 53 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(26)

4 Star

(14)

3 Star

(7)

2 Star

(2)

1 Star

(4)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 53 Customer Reviews
  • Posted February 4, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    This novel is very eventful from beginning to end, and also funn

    This novel is very eventful from beginning to end, and also funny. Life can be chaotic as with Eliza’s life, nonetheless God’s plan will prevail. When we experience a stream of bad luck and seems as though nothing is going our way, rest and be assured God is working things out. God’s blessings can even surpass our expectations. As we see in this novel God aligns people, events and situations so that his will can be done. This an amazing story of learning to trust God, even when we don’t know the outcome. Trust God to have our best interest at heart even when times are dismal. It is during those times that we distance ourselves and we are not in accordance with God as Eliza did at the beginning of the novel. In the end, she realized he was at work. I admire the courage of both Eliza and Agatha. Eliza determined to find those responsible for stealing her fortune and ruining her family name and Agatha for being a good friend and sticking with her, regardless of what they encountered, even landing themselves in jail. Lawrence, well, he was honest about his feeling about Eliza and got exactly what he deserved. I am happy Eliza found true love and a gentleman. Thank you Bethany House for allowing me to share my opinion. Also for giving me the opportunity to select a great book and providing copy free of charge.

    8 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted December 31, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    A funny and lovely romance  I will admit that I read this book v

    A funny and lovely romance 
    I will admit that I read this book very fast, but I still managed to fall in love with it. From the moment she toppled over because of her extremely long/large/and ugly gown and commented on how well the floors were maintained to the very end I was laughing, smiling and my mind was working to figure everything out. I loved Hamilton and how he continues to rescue Eliza. I covered my eyes with the books when I felt embarrassed for her, and I sighed basically whenever Hamilton was around. I felt for the characters, and I fell in love with them. All of them. I also loved the mystery that surrounded the story and it kept my brain turning while giggles escaped my lips at the many funny things that both Eliza and other characters say. I was swept away into a world of humour, mystery and romance and I am completely thankful of the journey.
    Good:
    Eliza—You are pretty funny, and determined.
    Hamilton—I don’t know how to describe you other than awesome.
    Zayne—love your humour.
    Bad: 
    Sometimes the story line was a little slow for my liking but those moments were few and far in between.
    Overall (Writing style, story line, and general):
    Overall the writing style was very easy to follow, the story line was entertaining and the mystery did challenge my mind a bit. I never had to back track to read something over and there was just the right about of humour and romance.

    "Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc. 
    Available at your favourite bookseller from Bethany House, a division of Baker Publishing Group".  

    6 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 20, 2013

    Jen Turano has a gift for creating humorous characters with vibr

    Jen Turano has a gift for creating humorous characters with vibrant personalities. Eliza is a delightful protagonist that you can't help but fall in love with. Hamilton is a wonderful hero. I fell for him almost immediately. The plot was wildly entertaining and almost bordered on ridiculous at times (I mean this as a good thing).

    This is a really sweet story. It's squeaky clean and adorably funny. The only thing that I didn't like were the random religious discussions that popped up out of the blue. They felt forced and out of place. I love having good morals and Christian values included in the books I read, but this one was a bit awkward in that regard.

    5 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 23, 2013

    I love, love, loved this book! A Change of Fortune by Jen Tura

    I love, love, loved this book! A Change of Fortune by Jen Turano is an fun book that I could not put down. Lady Eliza Sumner and Mr. Hamilton Beckett instantly reached into my heart and did not let go even after I read the last page. The cover of this book totally captures the personality of Lady Eliza. I hope to see these character re-appear in a series, as well as future love stories for Mr. Zayne Beckett, Miss Agatha Watson, Grayson and Arabella. I have heard that Theodore Wilders story is due out in May 2013. I love these character so much that I hope Jen will also write love stories for the children of these families.

    I don't like to read spoilers, so therefore I do not write them, but I highly recommend this wonderful book by Jen Turano. I look forward to more great books from the pen of Jen Turano in the future and I am a now a lifetime fan. I give this one a 5++ out of 5 stars.


    I received this book from Bethany House for my honest review.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 8, 2013

    Saturday, June 8, 2013 A Change of Fortune by Jen Turano, ©2012

    Saturday, June 8, 2013
    A Change of Fortune by Jen Turano, ©2012
    Ladies of Distinction, book 1

    Mrs. Watson released a sigh. "My dear, I don't wish to cause you distress, but quite frankly, you are not the type of woman with whom one wishes to enter into conversation at a dinner party."
    Eliza swallowed a laugh. Apparently her attempt at disguising her appearance and her true identity could be deemed a success.
    --A Change of Fortune, 10-11

    Free eBook - Gentleman of Her Dreams, a Ladies of Distinction novella by Jen Turano, is free in the Kindle store, Nook Book, and from Kobo and ChristianBook, courtesy of Christian publisher Bethany House. This novella is a companion to A Change of Fortune, Jen Turano's full-length debut novel.

    In 1880 New York, Eliza Sumner has taken a position as governess to the Roger Watson family. She is called into service for the dinner, not serving, but rather as a substitute guest in place of Agatha, the Watsons' eldest indisposed daughter. Mrs. Watson has Eliza seated between Mr. and Mr. Beckett, two brothers who are the guests-of-honor, with the intent of turning the attention of the eldest Beckett to the honor and merit of Agatha. She tells them of the last minute switch, and that she is the family's governess. Instead of the mission she has been assigned, she is informed of other guests around the table, and becomes part of their discussion.

    Follow the escapades as Eliza and her new friend, Agatha, take off to retrieve Eliza's treasure and good name. The Mr. and Mr. Beckett are on a venture; will they too join in the intriguing entanglement to assist her in her situation? Speaking of situation, Eliza, through trying circumstances, loses her position. As a damsel in distress, now what will become of her?

    This is a delightful story with humor abounding, focusing on the retrieval of Eliza's rightful titled securities. But in the end will their quest become the same?

    Many are the plans in a person's heart, but it is the LORD's purpose that prevails.
    --Proverbs 19:21

    A Change of Fortune is the first in a four book series published by Bethany House.

    ***Thank you for sending me a copy of Jen Turano's A Change of Fortune: Ladies of Distinction, book 1, from Bethany House Publishers. This review is in my own words. No other compensation was received.***

    2 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 15, 2013

    What I liked: I liked how it read quickly for me and it was full

    What I liked: I liked how it read quickly for me and it was full of fun and engaging characters.
    What I didn’t like: That you have to wait for the rest of the series.
    Overall Impression: Jen Turano is a new author and I can say that I will be reading more of her books in the future. I enjoy reading the story from both Eliza’s and Hamilton’s points of view. To me this seemed to make the book read a little faster. If you are looking for a funny fast read with a little suspense thrown in then this is the book for you. I liked how Eliza who was a “Lady” took it upon herself to investigate who stole her inheritance and went to go find them. Along the way Eliza meets Agatha who becomes her partner in crime. I can’t imagine going from being a Lady to a Nanny and in a new country to boot. After Eliza meets Hamilton they decide to work together as they are looking for the same enemy. You will also see how they grow closer to each other while on their “journey”. I know a few of the people we have met along the way will be in the future books in The Lady of Distinction Series. 4 Stars for me.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 27, 2013

    Okay, not great

    I really wanted to like this one since I liked its main character right off, but the dialog was weak and the spiritual element felt tacked on. It may be that the books later in the series are better.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 11, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    Jen Turano in her new book, "A Change of Fortune" publ

    Jen Turano in her new book, "A Change of Fortune" published by Bethany House Publishers takes us into the life of Eliza Sumner.

    From the back cover: Lady Eliza Sumner is on a mission. After losing her family, her fiance, and her faith, the disappearance of her fortune is the last straw. Now, masquerading as Miss Eliza Sumner, governess-at-large, she's determined to find the man who ran off with her fortune, reclaim the money, and head straight back to London.

    Much to Mr. Hamilton Beckett's chagrin, all the eyes of New York society-all the female ones, at least-are on him. Unfortunately for all the matchmaking mothers and eligible daughters, he has no plans to marry again, especially with his hands full keeping his business afloat and raising his two children alone.

    When Eliza's hapless attempts to regain her fortune put her right in Hamilton's path, sparks instantly begin to fly. The discovery of a common nemesis causes them to join forces, but with all their plans falling by the wayside and their enemies getting the better of them, it will take a riot of complications for Hamilton and Eliza to realize that God just might have had a better plan in mind all along.

    Let me start out by saying that I think "A Change Of Fortune" should be made into a major motion picture. Jen Turano has given us one really fun book filled with some great characters and a rollicking plot. Lady Eliza Sumner is a Lady, that means she has never worked and on top of that she is a bit clumsy. So what happens? Her fortune is stolen so she has to come to New York to steal it back hiding in the role of a governess. Eliza is not a very good thief so, naturally, she winds up in jail and has to be bailed out by new friend, Hamilton Beckett. Now they must join forces to try to reclaim Eliza's fortune. Along the way romance develops and the book picks up from there. Eliza and Hamilton are extraordinary and well written. This is a just plain fun, exciting story that entertains while giving us an adventure. Ms.Turano has batted in a winner and I enjoyed it a lot. I am so looking forward to more from this very talented author.

    Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Bethany House Publishers. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 4, 2013

    On the heels of her father¿s death, Lady Eliza Sumner is jilted

    On the heels of her father’s death, Lady Eliza Sumner is jilted by her fiance when her fortune is stolen from her. Scandal surrounds the missing money, as many believe that her father lost the money through gambling, but Eliza knows better and refuses to believe the untruths being spread about her family. Instead she chooses to follow the man her father trusted most and whom she believes betrayed them.

    Lady Eliza travels from England and disguises herself as a governess, Miss Watson, so that she can keep an eye out for the thief in New York society. She desires her true identity to remain a secret, but when she is put in the path of Mr. Hamilton Beckett, everything changes.

    Hamilton is a widower with two small children who is suspicious that something is wrong in his business. As a wealthy widower, all of society is attempting to match him with anyone of the female persuasion ~ but he has no desire to be trapped by anyone of them. When he meets the governess, ‘Miss Watson’, he is strangely intrigued by her curious nature.

    The two discover that the person they are searching for is one and the same, so they work together to uncover the deception he has

    My Thoughts on A Change of Fortune

    Set in 1880 New York society, A Change of Fortune is the first in the Ladies of Distinction series - and a wonderful beginning. I am certain that we were introduced to a character {or two in this book that will be seen in future books, and I cannot wait until they are released – definitely ones I will be keeping an eye out for.

    A Change of Fortune isn’t a ‘light’ fluff novel, but rather shows a development of the characters both spiritually and relationally. The quirky friendships that grow between characters are enjoyable and the banter between others just makes you smile. There is humor, suspense, romance and more to keep you turning pages until the wee hours of the morning.

    If there is one book that you pick up this year {and a new author as well}, A Change of Fortune is one that you should add to your cart right away. Jen Turano’s debut novel, A Change of Fortune, is not only captivating, but one that you will want to pull out to read again and again.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 3, 2013

    The cover sold me on this book, but then I read a novella which

    The cover sold me on this book, but then I read a novella which had me laughing out loud as it introduced the characters in this novel. The novella had me racing to read the book...so much so that I almost went out and bought a second copy of the book because I couldn't wait to get home to start reading.




    The book did not disappoint. There is a strong thread of humor that runs through the book, from the main characters to the large supporting cast. Lady Eliza Sumner is hiding who she is in an attempt to find the man who stole her fortune. She ends up serving as a governess in NYC and is thrust into a comedy of errors when she is asked to fill in at an elegant dinner party. Hamilton Beckett is fortunate enough to sit beside this young woman who can't do anything right, and he is intrigued by the very fact she could care less about who he is. Add in a couple kids, a young woman who is determined to be part of every adventure, a jail, interfering mothers, and a white horse and you have a recipe for an absolutely delightful read.




    This book is a debut novel, and I truly cannot wait for the next book. Jen Turano has earned a place at the top of my TBR book with future novels.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 19, 2012

    Jen Turano weaves a delightful tale in A Change of Fortune. Lady

    Jen Turano weaves a delightful tale in A Change of Fortune. Lady Eliza Sumner has lost everything - her family, her fortune, her fiance, and her faith in God. She travels to America from England with one thought - to find the man who ran off with her fortune and regain her inheritance and return to her homeland.

    In New York City she must go under cover as a governess, so as not to reveal her true identity. At the insistence of her employer, she attends a dinner party and meets Mr. Hamilton Beckett. He is the much sought after bachelor in New York society. As Eliza seeks information about the thief who stole everything from her, she continues to bump into Hamilton Beckett.

    The duo undergo many twists and turns as they join forces. Will they choose to have more than a dwindling faith in God, or will they seek Him with their future?

    This book was provided free for review by the author and Bethany House Publishers.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 20, 2014

    An enjoyable read

    A mystery and romance combined. An enjoyable read.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 19, 2014

    Great Book

    Great book. Lots of action and a lot of fun. New York in the 1880s, the interaction of a couple of New York society families with an English transplant. Great book, lots of excitement, a real enjoyable read.

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  • Posted April 18, 2014

    A Change of Fortune Jen Turano Book Summary: Lady Eliza Sumn

    A Change of Fortune
    Jen Turano




    Book Summary: Lady Eliza Sumner is on a mission. After losing her family, her fiance, and her faith, the disappearance of her fortune is the last straw. Now, masquerading as Miss Eliza Sumner, governess-at-large, she's determined to find the man who ran off with her fortune, reclaim the money, and head straight back to London. Much to Mr. Hamilton Beckett's chagrin, all the eyes of New York society--all the female ones, at least--are on him. Unfortunately for all the matchmaking mothers and eligible daughters, he has no plans to marry again, especially with his hands full keeping his business afloat and raising his two children alone. When Eliza's hapless attempts to regain her fortune put her right in Hamilton's path, sparks instantly begin to fly. The discovery of a common nemesis causes them to join forces, but with all their plans falling by the wayside and their enemies getting the better of them, it will take a riot of complications for Hamilton and Eliza to realize that God just might have had a better plan in mind all along.




    Review: This was a great book! I loved Hamilton and Eliza. There were many great secondary characters in this well paced story. From page 5 I was hooked. I read almost half in a couple of hours. The suspense was tempered right along with the witty dialogue. Agatha was fantastic! I can not wait to read her story. There was so much happening that it made for a fast and easy read where I did not want it to end. The children Piper and Ben were realistic and likable. I wonder why I have not devoured the rest of this series. I do believe that Ms. Turano is a very gifted writer who was able to keep my attention, have a number of characters that were dear and enjoyable without loosing the central focus of her story while being believable. I am so thrilled this is part of a series. 
    I would like to thank LibraryThing and Bethany House for allowing me to read and review this book in return for a free copy and I was never asked to write a favorable review by anyone. 

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 12, 2014

    Delightful

    This book was a fast fun read. It was very funny at times....you could really picture the trouble they got into.

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  • Posted November 22, 2013

    Recommend

    Very good, with interesting twist to it that I hadn't read before.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 22, 2013

    Enjoyable read

    Written well of the period. Held your interest.

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  • Posted November 22, 2013

    Old time theme.

    Modern woman in old times. She was brave and did not wait for a man to help her.Tried to get her fortune back by coming to America.No sex.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 22, 2013

    Easy, fun read

    This was a fun, romantic story. There's also some humor in the story, which I enjoyed.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 9, 2013

    Recommend.

    Cute read. Good storyline. It's a little heavy on religion but, I can overlook that. I enjoy reading period books. I plan to read another book in this series. I recommend this story.

    S.A.K.

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