a very enjoyable romantic novella with more than a hint of mystery
Can a ghost scare off a young heiress determined to make her new manor her home?
Having inherited a family estate she’d never heard of, Minerva Goodridge travels to Cornwall to take charge of her new home. But fatal memories lurk in the shadows of Trekellis Manor. As the locals keep away from the house, Minnie accepts the help of a stranger. Can she trust him?
Gideon Drake, 8th Earl of Rothdale, is on a mission to uncover a family secret linked to Trekellis Manor. But the arrival of Minerva, the new owner, disrupts his investigation. Attracted to the headstrong heiress, he decides to take action – and ends up uncovering more than he expected.
Gideon must weigh up his family’s reputation against Minnie’s, but will the revelations tear them apart?
A romantic Victorian suspense novella set in beautiful Cornwall.
“Thoroughly enjoyable Victorian Gothic Novella”
~ 5* review, Francine Howarth, author
“…depicted well with a good flavour of the times…”
~ 5* review, Maureen Vincent-Northam, author
“It’s entertaining, with likable characters and a little mystery thrown in.”
~ 5* review, The Happy Reader
Minnie couldn’t tear her gaze away, entranced by the Gothic turrets flanking the entrance to the estate. As the cart rattled through them, a shudder ran down her spine. The narrow three story buildings stood forbidding, the tiny windows covered in dirt and dust, rusty locks and chains on the narrow doors. Hedges grew tall against the walls, ivy covered the lower half of the towers, left to grow unchecked.
Inside the grounds, what obviously used to be a lawn swayed in the breeze, overgrown, with wildflowers dotting the knee high grass. Moss covered the untended gravel track beneath the wheels of the cart.
Then she glanced ahead and held her breath. The manor loomed proud, with tall double doors in the center of the wing facing her, marking the main entrance.
The cart ground to a halt just outside the worn stone steps leading to the oak doors. Cracks had split the faded wood.
Sadness washed over her. Why were people–Father one of them–so superstitious about a building? Not once had he mentioned Trekellis in her presence; even when she nursed him during his long illness.
“Here, miss. Let me help you.” Mr. Drake held out his hand.
As she rose, the horses lurched forward. Minnie lost her balance, her arms flailing through the air. “No!”
She toppled sideways, certain she’d land unceremoniously on the ground. But a pair of strong hands encircled her middle and instead of falling, she was pulled safely against a lean, hard body. Her face inches from his, she stared up, his dark eyes unfathomable.
Safe? Perhaps not.
Unable to pull her gaze–her body–away, her heart pounding in her ears, she swallowed hard. “Ups-a-daisy.” Heat rose in her cheeks.
A smile curved his well formed lips. “Indeed.” He raised an eyebrow, not relinquishing his hold. “Are you quite all right, Miss Goodridge?”
(c) Cathie Dunn 2012. All rights reserved.