Always a Princess [NOOK Book]

Overview

Eve Stanhope masquerades as a foreign princess at ton parties, stealing jewels from the nobility she despises and returning to her London slum at the end of the night. She's carefully plotting revenge on her former employer—a society cad who's ruined her reputation. Now it's her turn to ruin him. What she doesn't expect is to encounter the criminally handsome Orchid Thief on one of her heists…

Philip Rosemont, Viscount Wesley, is also in disguise. Bored and stifled by society, ...

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Always a Princess

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Overview

Eve Stanhope masquerades as a foreign princess at ton parties, stealing jewels from the nobility she despises and returning to her London slum at the end of the night. She's carefully plotting revenge on her former employer—a society cad who's ruined her reputation. Now it's her turn to ruin him. What she doesn't expect is to encounter the criminally handsome Orchid Thief on one of her heists…

Philip Rosemont, Viscount Wesley, is also in disguise. Bored and stifled by society, he steals jewels for fun and leaves orchids as his calling cards. He knows the woman he's cornered at the ball is no aristocrat, much less the Princess of Valdastock. But something tells him she's not exactly common, either. Now he must uncover her motives while he enjoys her illicit kisses. Can these two become partners in crime even as they give in to their mutual seduction?

Previously published, newly revised by author.

83,000 words

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781426892028
  • Publisher: Carina Press
  • Publication date: 8/8/2011
  • Sold by: HARLEQUIN
  • Format: eBook
  • Edition description: Original
  • Sales rank: 437,490
  • File size: 862 KB

Meet the Author

Award-winning author Alice Duncan lives with a herd of wild dachshunds (enriched from time to time with fosterees from New Mexico Dachshund Rescue) in Roswell, New Mexico. She's not a UFO enthusiast; she's in Roswell because her mother's family settled there fifty years before the aliens crashed.

Since her two daughters live in California, where Alice was born, she'd like to return there, but she can't afford to. Alice would love to hear from you. And be sure to visit her website: aliceduncan.net.

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Read an Excerpt


The woman was a fraud if Philip had ever seen one. A very lovely fraud, no doubt, but not difficult for a discerning eye to spot. Of course, most people in London society had eyes that discerned no more than what lay at the end of their noses, so it seemed hardly likely anyone had spotted her as such. But Philip Rosemont, Viscount Wesley, had, and the imposture made her fascinating—the only item of interest in a hopelessly stuffy and entirely predictable ball…aside from the fact that Lady Bainbridge wasn't wearing her star ruby tonight. With any luck, he might make off with both the ruby and the beautiful impostor before the night had ended.

He circled the stranger's knot of admirers as he watched her bat her eyelashes and toss her head, setting waves of ebony curls against the pale skin of her cheeks and throat.

"So kind it was of Lady Bainbridge to have me," she said in an accent Philip couldn't place.

"Nonsense," Neville Ormsby declared earnestly, rather like an overeager puppy dog. "No one would dream of having a ball as grand as this one without inviting London's latest sensation."

The woman placed a delicate hand over the pale skin of her bosom and laughed prettily. "I am now a sensation?"

"Indeed you are, Princess," said another of the men—Charles Someone, third in line to the Dukedom of Somewhere if Philip remembered correctly. "Aside from that ghastly Orchid Thief, you're the only excitement we've had all season. And no one wants to see any more of the likes of him."

The woman cocked her head. "But he is romantic, no? To take the jewel and leave the orchid in its place."

"Not so romantic when it's your own diamond studs being pilfered," Ormsby said.

Not likely. Philip happened to know for a fact that the Orchid Thief had no interest in something as pedestrian as Ormsby's studs.

"But why discuss this dreadful business," Ormsby continued, "when we have a jewel of a lady in our princess here?"

Princess, eh? Philip had been watching her for the entire evening, and she was no more a princess than he was. She had impostor written all over her. Her eyes shone just a bit too brightly, given the overall insipid character of the men around her. She laughed just a bit too loudly—Ormsby's jokes were never that funny—and when she did, she threw back her head, emphasizing the long column of her throat and the gentle slope of her shoulders. No doubt she'd chosen her gown with its daringly low-cut bodice to distract every male at the ball from this patently dishonest impersonation. Only, who or what was she pretending to be?

"Ah, sir," she said in an accent that was neither French nor German, neither Eastern nor Western—just a polyglot, generic European, as contrived as her dark eyelashes were long. "My dear Lord Neville, you tease me, no?"

"My dear Princess Eugenia." Ormsby looked quite ready to drop to his knee before her. "If I were to tease you, you should certainly know that you'd been teased."

She laughed again, bringing a flush of color to her cheeks. It took quite an accomplished actress to blush on command, and she managed it nicely. Just as she had managed to capture the undivided adoration of every bland, aristocratic dolt in the vicinity with her display. She might have fooled Philip, too, if he hadn't seen a bit of the world and known a few tricks of his own. He could detect a fraud when he saw one—even one in such a beautiful package as this.

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