Kate Millbank has lived with her relations at Westerly since she was a young orphan, and
now the playmate of her youth has come home. too. But David has returned from the Napoleonic
wars scarred physically and mentally, to a less than fulsome welcome. He was always the
outsider, the illegitimate son of the Earl of Falworth and barely tolerated by the Countess
and legitimate offspring. Now the Earl lies very sick, Kate has grown into a beautiful young
woman, and David is not the idealistic man he used to be. Something is about to happen that
will change everything forever.
Ms Bell’s tale of a cuckoo in the nest returning to stir things up is an engaging one;
the surprises can be guessed fairly easily but the whole thing rattles along like a well
sprung coach. It has a small cast of characters, but we get to know most of them pretty well
and there is a good sense of place with the historic Mendips and Bath being ably drawn. It is
easy to like and identify with the protagonists, and for all those people not keen on mystery
with their romance I can honestly say that this is a tale free of spies, murders or the
supernatural. Instead, settle back and enjoy a good straight historical romance.