Lady Alexander Hobbs (Alex) in fell in love with Lord Monroe when she was fifteen, just after she'd written her list of the things she wished to accomplish in her life.
'1. Become brave and daring like Thomas.
2. Become beautiful, willowy and poised like Lavina. Never stain my gowns with food, et cetera.
3. Have a come-out during which an exceedingly eligible gentleman asks me to dance, thereby making the affair a smashing success.
4. Marry my true love. Must be handsome, dashing, witty, kind and honrable.
Name to be determined later.
Lord Owen Munroe.'
Now three years later at the ripe old age of 18 with her list not even begun, she's discovered that her father and Owen's have decided her true love, Lord Owen, is to marry her older sister, the perfect (and horribly spoilt) Lavina.
And that's when Alex decides to fight for her one true love, who has very little idea of her existence.
Enter stage right those three (now) grand ladies aka the Playful Brides' Lucy, Cassandra and Jane, (who cut a swathe through society with their high jinks as they pursued their true own true loves), and the situation becomes even more fraught. With Alex's natural inventiveness and these ladies' intervention things are far from dull, if not downright muddled.
Sister Lavina is so wonderfully and truly terrible that she's almost unbelievable. Will she ever change? Talk about the ugly older sister with a facade beautiful hiding inner demons! I don't see how, but perhaps Bowman might be able to bring about a miracle if ever she decides to write Lavina's story. Personally I think she should disappear into the mists of time.
Lots of wonderful stuff and nonsense dot the landscape of this true love's tale. A super read to while away an afternoon with.
A NetGalley ARC