A Lady of Secret Devotion
Bethany House, Aug 2008, $13.99
In 1857 Philadelphia, Cassandra Stover is elated when a kind wealthy society lady Mrs. Jameston hires her as her companion as her family needs the money. Cassie moves in to her employer’s home. Whereas Mrs. Jameston treats Cassie as if she is her daughter, her son Sebastian is odious and always seems stalking her ,waiting to get inside her pants; worse in Cassie’s mind is he is abusive towards his mother.
Widower Mark Langford has arrived in town from Boston to investigate the murder of his best friend Richard. He believes Sebastian killed Richard, but has no proof to affirm his belief. Needing to get closer to his prime suspect, Mark pretends to court Cassandra in order to find the evidence and to keep the two women safe because he thinks Sebastian will kill the females. Their fake courtship turns real as they fall in love, but stopping Sebastian from another two homicides remains Mark’s priority.
This third Ladies of Liberty tale (see A LADY OF HIDDEN INTENT and A LADY OF HIGH REGARD) is a fabulous pre-Civil War historical romantic suspense. The story line contains a strong cast especially the lead couple. She has faith in God, country, family (including Mrs. Jameston whom she loves as a grandma) and Mark; he thanks the Lord for a second chance as his beloved late wife died seven years ago from cholera. Although the villain has no redeeming qualities, fans will appreciate this fine mid nineteenth century Americana romance summed up by Mrs. Jameston who will always love her son even though she knows he will always hurt her.