Written by Barbara Cartland
How far would you go to protect the things you care about the most? Lady Dorianna Dale is packing her trousseau for her illustrious Society wedding to a wealthy man she does not love, in the hope that she can save her family estate from the hands of the bailiffs. Following the death of her husband, the charismatic Lord Dale, Dorianna’s mother marries Mr Shawcroft, who seduces her with his kindness and promises of a secure life. However, his genial mask quickly slips to reveal a hard-hearted gambler whose wealth is reliant on the turn of a card. When their beautiful home, Ashburton Hall, becomes the next casualty of her Step-papa’s gambling habit, Dorianna reluctantly agrees to make an advantageous match in a bid to ward off his creditors. But Dorianna does not love her bumptious husband-to-be, Lord Buxton. In fact she hates everything about the man, especially the sound of his loud foolish voice. However, unless the wedding goes ahead, she and her Mama will lose everything that they hold dear. Trying her hardest not to show her repulsion and putting away thoughts of true love, Dorianna pastes on a smile and prepares to reluctantly do her duty. That is until she meets the handsome and enigmatic Earl of Claremont at a London soirée. Within minutes of talking to him her heart is racing and she longs for them to meet again. Can she really give up her dreams of true love? Especially now that she has had a glimpse of what romance could be with a man she respects? Deep in the woodland garden at Ashburton Hall, where she used to spend happier times with her beloved father, a Greek statue holds the key to Dorianna’s future happiness. Will the gods hear her prayers? Or will she have to make the ultimate sacrifice to pay for the mistakes of those around her?