#1 New York Times bestselling author Stephanie Laurens brings you a tale of unexpected romance that blossoms against the backdrop of dastardly murder.
On discovering the lifeless body of an innocent ingenue, a peer attending a country house party joins forces with the lady-amazon sent to fetch the victim safely home in a race to expose the murderer before Stokes, assisted by Barnaby and Penelope, is forced to allow the guests, murderer included, to decamp.
Well-born rakehell and head of an ancient family, Alaric, Lord Carradale, has finally acknowledged reality and is preparing to find a bride. But loyalty to his childhood friend, Percy Mandeville, necessitates attending Percy's annual house party, held at neighboring Mandeville Hall. Yet despite deploying his legendary languid charm, by the second evening of the week-long event, Alaric is bored and restless.
Escaping from the soiree and the Hall, Alaric decides that as soon as he's free, he'll hie to London and find the mild-mannered, biddable lady he believes will ensure a peaceful life. But the following morning, on walking through the Mandeville Hall shrubbery on his way to join the other guests, he comes upon the corpse of a young lady-guest.
Constance Whittaker accepts that no gentleman will ever offer for her-she's too old, too tall, too buxom, too headstrong ... too much in myriad ways. Now acting as her grandfather's agent, she arrives at Mandeville Hall to extricate her young cousin, Glynis, who unwisely accepted an invitation to the reputedly licentious house party.
But Glynis cannot be found.
A search is instituted. Venturing into the shrubbery, Constance discovers an outrageously handsome aristocrat crouched beside Glynis' lifeless form. Unsurprisingly, Constance leaps to the obvious conclusion.
Luckily, once the gentleman explains that he'd only just arrived, commonsense reasserts itself. More, as matters unfold and she and Carradale have to battle to get Glynis' death properly investigated, Constance discovers Alaric to be a worthy ally.
Yet even after Inspector Stokes of Scotland Yard arrives and takes charge of the case, along with his consultants, the Honorable Barnaby Adair and his wife, Penelope, the murderer's identity remains shrouded in mystery, and learning why Glynis was killed-all in the few days before the house party's guests will insist on leaving-tests the resolve of all concerned. Flung into each other's company, fiercely independent though Constance is, unsusceptible though Alaric is, neither can deny the connection that grows between them.
Then Constance vanishes.
Can Alaric unearth the one fact that will point to the murderer before the villain rips from the world the lady Alaric now craves for his own?
About the Author
Stephanie Laurens, a #1 New York Times bestselling author, began writing as an escape from the dry world of professional science. Her hobby quickly became a career when her novels about the masterful Cynster cousins captivated readers, making her one of the romance world's most beloved and popular authors. She subsequently introduced the equally unforgettable members of the Bastion Club, as well as several other series. Currently living outside Melbourne, Australia, with her husband and two cats, she has been writing historical romance novels in her signature "Errol Flynn meets Jane Austen" style for more than twenty years.
Napoleon Ryan is a comedy actor from England. His acting credits include several roles in television and film, and his lead performance in The Black Hole, a short film, earned him numerous international awards and accolades. He has narrated audiobooks in the fiction and nonfiction genres.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Another good book book by Stephanie Laurens. The culprit was fairly easy to spot though she added a few red herrings near the end to make you doubt yourself. And I really do like authors who have the couple like each other from the beginning and not spend most of the book arguing with each other. Keep up the good writing! Please!
Another great read in the Casebook of Barnaby Adair. Alaric and Constance meet over the dead body of her cousin. The story heats up with questions about who in the house party could be the murderer. Alaric and Constance become deeply involved in this investigation and with each other.
This book is too close to her first book "devil's bride" Just read it it is much better than this one her older book are much better in my opinion.
This started off okay, but then it lost my attention and struggled to finish.
Another delightful book by Stephanie Lauren’s. The combination of a murder investigation with a romantic house party keeps the reader’s attention. I enjoy the stories with Inspector Stoke, Barnaby Adair, and his wife Penelope. She creates lovely scenes and intriguing characters with a mixture of suspense and romance.
Strong admiral characters with dizzy twist and turns.