by Blaise Kilgallen

April 2007
ISBN: 1-58749-614-3
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When Clarissa's friend Jane confides in her that she is frightened to return to her post as governess to a widowed marquess' daughter because she was afraid of the advances a guest of the Marquess had made to her, Clarissa comes up with a plan. She decides to take Jane's place for a month so Jane can give notice.

The story has an unusual plot and it works well as it is quite believable that a woman of strong character like Clarissa would help her timid friend Jane by taking her place.

When Clarissa meets Alex, the Marquess, she finds herself attracted to him in spite of his reputation with women.

The story is strong on passion and the romance is very good. It is interesting how Clarissa wins round Alex's daughter, Lady Beatrice who is spoilt and self willed.

There is an underlying subplot with the Countess of Devon trying to make Alex come up to scratch even though he is tiring of her. She needs him as her ancient husband has gambled away his fortune. This plot runs intriguingly through the story adding excitement to the romance.

The characters are well thought out and interact well with each other. I particularly like how Lady Beatrice develops under Clarissa's teaching.

There is a villain in the shape of Freddie Black the marquess' friend. He is a rather nasty piece of work with his unwelcome attentions on women including Jane and Clarissa.

This is an intriguing story with lots of clever twists in the plot and there are a few surprises in the later chapters.

Altogether a very satisfying read.

Blaise Kilgallen is not an author I had heard of before but I will certainly look for other books by her after reading this one. I really enjoyed her writing style and can recommend this book very much.

Reviewed in June 2007 by Mary.

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