ABOUT THE BOOK
The countryside of England provided an idyllic backdrop for Charles Brumley’s and Leah Hastings’s childhood. Neighbors and best friends, the pair passed many happy days racing through the rolling hills of Derbyshire. Everything was perfect—until Charles ruined it all and abandoned Leah for university. Six years later, the former friends are thrust into each other’s paths once more. Leah had been looking forward to the ball, an opportunity to further her acquaintance with the handsome Mr. Wilkins—but when she sees Charles’s familiar face through the crowd, her traitorous heart leaps. Charles faces his own struggle: he has loved Leah since he was fifteen years old, yet it seems he is too late—it appears that her affections are otherwise engaged. As the pair tentatively renews their friendship, the spark between them is undeniable. After so many years apart, Leah endeavors to reconcile her feelings toward her once cherished companion. But when a conniving rival for Charles’s attention approaches Leah, the threat is clear: give up her association with Charles or a devastating secret about her family will be revealed. Faced with an impossible decision, Leah must make a choice—the ruin of her family or the ruin of her heart?
While the writing of this book was a smidgen over the top, with some awkward phrasing here and there, I can honestly say that I enjoyed the story. Leah and Charles are both appealing characters and it was interesting seeing things from both points of view. I enjoyed following along as Leah and Charles struggled to deal with their changing relationship. I have to admit though that I was seriously irritated with Mrs. Ansley and her interference with Charles and Leah's relationship. And both Leah and Charles made me roll my eyes on occasion with their assumptions and foolishness. But then again, real life can be like that too. In any case, Linton pulled me right into her characters lives and I couldn't put the book down until I finished.
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