Lady Camilla Summerton is two years widowed, and still mourns her beloved Harry. But she has
been tempted forth from her seclusion in Gloucestershire to the London Season, and a ball at Carlton
House. This ball is to celebrate the betrothal of Princess Charlotte, but it is all too much for
Camilla so she seeks the solace of a quiet room. En route she meets her best friend Elizabeth, but
also the person she hates more than anybody else—Dominic, Earl of Ennismount. It is this
arrogant fellow who caused her late husband’s death, so she is hardly pleased to meet him, and
even less pleased to become embroiled with a pair of youthful, star crossed lovers.
The Czar’s beautiful ward, a wayward young nobleman and a magical house created to look like a
Chinese palace are some of the ingredients of this charming Regency romance. This author has the
right, light touch to make the story fizz along, as she tells of crackling passion between more than
one set of lovers without much in the way of sex. I particularly liked the way the novel was grounded
in a particular year, weaving factual events and people in with the fiction and making it all seem
much more real. Here is an author adept in conveying atmosphere and tension as well as describing
a scene, and there is plenty of romance, tinged with a little mystery. I’d read another gladly.