A Visit from Sir Nicholas (Effington Family & Friends Series)

A Visit from Sir Nicholas (Effington Family & Friends Series)

by Victoria Alexander

Hardcover(Large Print)

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Everyone knows that an Effington always gets her way ... but this time it's not going to be easy!

Lady Elizabeth Effington simply could not suitably feel the joy of the Christmas season. Ten years had passed since she had boldly declared her love for Sir Nicholas Collingsworth. He rebuffed her and set out to seek his fortunes, while Elizabeth was left a woman scorned. Now, she discovers in horror that the inheritance she's managed beautifully was never hers to control. No, power over her finances lay in the hands of the last man she ever wants to see again: Nicholas!

But running Elizabeth's life isn't part of Nick's plans. He's intrigued when he discovers that the frivolous and flighty girl he once knew has turned into a beautiful and capable woman. Nick vows to woo -- and win -- her, and while she seems unmoved by his fervent seduction, he swears he will not rest until she accepts that most precious gift of all -- the gift of love.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780786280599
Publisher: Gale Group
Publication date: 11/23/2005
Series: Effington Family & Friends Series
Edition description: Large Print
Pages: 484
Product dimensions: 5.60(w) x 8.50(h) x 1.10(d)

About the Author

#1 New York Times bestselling author Victoria Alexander was an award-winning television reporter until she discovered fiction was more fun than real life. She is the author of thirty-one novels, and her books have been translated into more than a dozen languages. Victoria lives in Omaha, Nebraska, with her long-suffering husband and two dogs, in a house under endless renovation and never-ending chaos.

Read an Excerpt

A Visit From Sir Nicholas

Chapter One

Christmas Past
December 1843

Affectionately Yours, Lizzie.

Lady Elizabeth Effington stared at the words she'd just written and grimaced. No. Affectionately was entirely too personal, and Lizzie too informal. He'd never called her Lizzie and she doubted he'd start now. Indeed, with one signifi- cant exception, he'd never been anything other than completely proper with her. It was most annoying. She crossed out the line just as she had the previous three attempts.

"That was truly wonderful." Behind her, her younger sister, Juliana, sighed with heartfelt satisfaction.

"I knew you would like it," Lizzie said absently and stared at the sheet of white velum lying on the desk in front of her in the sitting room she shared with Jules.

"It was so ... so ..." Jules thought for a moment. "Wonderful."

"Quite," Lizzie murmured and wrote With Sincere Best Wishes, Lady Elizabeth Effington.

"No, more than wonderful. I daresay it's the best story about Christmas -- no -- the best story about anything I have ever read."

That wasn't right either. With Sincere Best Wishes had an obligatory ring, as if one were writing to an elderly relative one didn't particularly like but was required to be pleasant to nonetheless. Besides, while Lizzie might be too personal, Lady Elizabeth Effington was far and away too formal for her purposes. She slashed a pen stroke through the bothersome phrase.

"In point of fact," Jules continued in a tone that sounded far more like a literary critic than a mere girl of sixteen years, "I think it's quite the best story Mr. Dickens has written. Of those I've read, of course, but I do think I've read most of his stories as he is possibly my favorite author. It's not as amusing as Nicholas Nickleby but a far better ending to my mind than The Old Curiosity Shop, although I do so love stories about girls having adventures." Jules paused. "Even if Little Nell's were rather dreadful."

"Yes, well, dying at the end of one's story does tend to make one's adventures a bit less than cheery," Lizzie said under her breath.

With eternal friendship, Elizabeth.

"I dislike books that don't end well. Mother's books always end well. This one does too, in a fashion, although it is something of a pity Scrooge did not discover the error of his ways until he was old. He would have had a rather wonderful life if he had married Belle. Don't you think so?"

"Um hmm."

Friendship was good. Not the least bit improper. And Elizabeth had the right tone. Perhaps ... Lizzie sighed and crossed out her latest effort. Why on earth was this so blasted diffi- cult? All she was trying to do was come up with an appropriate inscription for a book to give as a gift. Still, her words were as important as the book itself. Even more so.

"I think my very favorite part though," Jules said slowly, "was at the end when Tiny Tim sprouted wings and flew off with Fezziwig and the Ghost of Christmas Past. Don't you agree?"

"Yes. Of course. I ..." Lizzie jerked her head up, swiveled in her chair, and stared at her sister. "What did you say?"

"I suspected as much." Jules narrowed her eyes suspiciously. "You weren't listening to a word I said, were you?"

"I most certainly was. You said ... " Lizzie searched her mind. She did so hate to admit that her sister was right, at least in part. "You said you liked A Christmas Carol better than any of Mr. Dickens's other works."

Jules snorted in a most unladylike manner. "That was the very least of what I said." She sat upright on the chaise and craned her neck to see around her sister. "Whatever are you doing, anyway?"

Lizzie shifted to shield the paper on the desk and adopted a casual tone. "Nothing of importance really. Just trying to find the right words."

Jules raised a brow. "For what?"

"For none of your concern, that's what," Lizzie said firmly.

"Is it something for Charles?" Jules fluttered her lashes in an exaggerated manner.

Lizzie laughed. "No, it's not. And even if it was, I wouldn't tell you."

"Why not?" Indignation sounded in the younger girl's voice. "I'd tell you what Iwas giving the gentleman who was about to ask for my hand in marriage."

"Nonsense," Lizzie said quickly. "Charles is not about to ask for my hand."

Jules smirked. "Would you care to wager on that?"

Lizzie stared at her sister, unease settling in the pit of her stomach. "Do you know something I should know?"

"Perhaps." Jules settled back on the chaise and smiled at her sister in that irritating way younger girls refine for the express purpose of torturing their older sisters. "I might know that Charles spoke to Father privately this morning. And I might further know, when Charles came out of Father's library, he had a look of relief and excitement on his face."

Lizzie waved off her sister's comments. "That could mean anything."

"Oh, come now, Lizzie. You can't be the least bit surprised by this." Jules studied her sister curiously. "For as long as I can remember, everyone in both our families has expected a match between you. I rather thought you expected to marry him as well."

"Charles is a good man and an excellent match, and any woman would be honored to be his wife. Indeed, it seems to me there are any number of young women wishing to do just that." Lizzie smiled in a noncommittal manner and hoped her comments would satisfy her sister.

"I know I would. Charles is wonderful." Jules heaved a heartfelt sigh. "He's so handsome, with the brightest blue eyes and the merriest smile and the most charming manner. Indeed, I fear I have a penchant for men with blond, wavy hair. One is hard-pressed to keep from running one's fingers through it."

A Visit From Sir Nicholas. Copyright © by Victoria Alexander. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.

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Visit from Sir Nicholas 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 50 reviews.
harstan More than 1 year ago
In 1843 Lady Elizabeth Effington is confused as much as perhaps Scrooge was when the first two ghosts and Marley visited him. Elizabeth has loved Charles for a long time, but the kisses of Nicholas Collingsworth send her into ecstasy. She tells Nicholas she loves him, but he insists she marry his friend and forget him as he will go to America. Nicholas leaves and Elizabeth marries Charles and has two children with him, but her spouse dies................................ In 1853 Nick returns to England responsible for Elizabeth¿s finances as his friend her late husband stipulated he would. To her chagrin Elizabeth still wants Nick, but she refuses to embarrass and humiliate herself again. Nick has always regretted his rejection of his beloved though he did so for noble reasons. Now he wants her in his bed bit not just as a temporary companion, but as his wife.......................... This terrific holiday Victorian Effington romance is a superb tale starring two likable protagonists and the ghost of Charles, beloved by both of them. The outtakes from Dickens¿ A Christmas Carol add depth by emphasizing the season and in some ways paralleling the main story line. Fans will appreciate this delightful yuletide historical second chance at love tale that emphasizes the belief in late December miracles........................ Harriet Klausner
Bookworm1951 More than 1 year ago
Well written, romance set in the mid 1800's. Good story line with a tie-in to the lessons learned in Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol. A love story that spans over a decade. Some sexual scenes but I felt they were tastefully done. The only reason I gave it 4 stars rather than 5 was due to the main female character's constant wishy-washy and sometimes childish ways. This aspect of the book seemed too repetitive and got tiresome. Otherwise, I enjoyed the story very much. If you like romances, you will enjoy this one.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book was one I didn't want to put down. Just wondering what was going to happen next..and will She ever realize and accept that Nicholas was her one and only "grand Passion!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I read everything Victoria Alexander writes and this did not disappoint. I stayed up late to finish this book. I would highly recommend this book.
Teresa51 More than 1 year ago
A must read for romance lovers. You will absolutely fall in love with Nicholas and Elizabeth. This is a keeper!
Guest More than 1 year ago
The plot and story line were very good. The charaters are a little frustrating. Mainly Elizabeth...a little to clueless about her life for my taste. But since she does end up growing and learning it works out. She never seemed to really explain the relationship and feelings Elizabeth and Charles had together, but again since Nick and Elizabeth were the real story it was definitly workable. I will be sharing this book with my friends.
jewelbabe More than 1 year ago
I enjoyed this " old" English style story. I didn't find it hard to follow. When 2 heart that have lost each other when young and then find each other again to become one, it make one feel like this can still happen today. I do believe this still happens in today's world.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Well-written, mostly believable and likeable characters. Ran on a bit in places, especially in trying to disentangle the lover's true feelings. Enjoyed most the interaction with the children.
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A very nice, warm story. Love denied and found again. I highly recommend this book and this author.
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saxston524 More than 1 year ago
This book is apart of the Effington series. Elizabeth has always favored Nicholas over Charles but ended up marrying Charles when Nicholas decides to go to America to make his fortune and breaks her heart. Ten years later Nicholas returns and finds out Charles has put him in charge of Elizabeth's finances. Elizabeth still has strong feelings for him and from here you have wit, humor and romance in dialogue. A good read that warms the heart.
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