This is unique Regency in that the heroine has arthritis. The story revolves a handsome rogue-ish Lord who gradually abandons his hedonistic ways and comes to love someone he'd never look at in his former life.
More like a full size story in a small Zebra Regency Romance! Very good!
In May Victoria Hamilton messaged me and told me that when she started her writing career in the Regencies, she wrote under her real name... Donna Simpson. Her first novel was Lord St. Claire's Angel. These days, Donna writes traditional mysteries under the pseudonym .. Victoria Hamilton and Amanda Cooper. I decided I really wanted to read her first Regency novel.
LORD ST. CLAIRE'S ANGEL is Lord Justin St.Claire (Richmond) and Celestine Simons story.
Celestine was from a very good family but when her father died the estate went to a distant cousin, she was without money or a home. She took a position of governess with the St. Claire's (Marquess and Marchioness of Ladymead).
Lord Justin St. Claire was the Marquess' brother. He spent his time in London. He was handsome and a born flirt. He liked to romance the debutantes but never commit. He was coming to Ladymeads for the Christmas holidays. It was not beyond him to have a little flirtation going with the help.
The holidays were quickly coming upon them. Celestine was walking by the drawing room when she heard Lady and Lord St. Claire talking about her.
'She is so plain and homely that Justin will not force his attentions on an aging, plain, arthritic spinster governess. It will definitely save us all from having the problem we had last year with Miss Chambly.
Celestine hung her head, too stunned by the cruel accuracy of the words to retreat, listened while they spoke of her. Embarrassed at having lingered long enough, she began to ascend the great curved staircase.
H Justin St. Claire found her ladyship with his two nieces in the parlor. The two little girls shrieked with delight and pestered their uncle until they found the treats he had brought for them. Lady St. Claire introduced Miss Simons their new governess. Justin saw a drab little creature in an ugly gray gown. "What happened to the little charmer you had here last Christmas? He asked. You know very well what happened. When Celestine took hold of the children's hands, he noticed her hands were malformed.
As the door closed behind her, he gave his sister in law a knowing look. "making sure I don't dally with the governess,, Elizabeth"
Justin decided that he was going to give this little brown mouse of a governess some romance for Christmas.
Celestine was not immune to Justin's charms. Even though she was a daughter of an untitled gentleman, she knew Lord St. Clair was above her touch but she figured she could dream couldn't she? She knew she was but one of the many women who have been drawn to him.
When the book ended I really did not want to leave this story. I found the story riveting. I read it in one day. And to think this was her first book I liked the book very much and as they say " Well done, Miss Simpson, well done!" Donna Lea Simpson has put out a new edition of this book in digital format. The book's new cover page is beautiful.
Happy Reading! @ReadingGenie
First let me say that most of the heroines in Ms Simpson's books are not your typical regency beauty. They are flawed and I have enjoyed seeing those flawed by society standards triumph in the end. The heroine in this book is no exception. She is plain. On the outside.
This is 1st book in a series Donna Simpson wrote and I've found reading a whole well written series back to back very enjoyable. She now writes under Donna Lea Simpson and is into paranormal things which I don't enjoy, I prefer regencies.
You'll see by my listing that I have most of this series and am listing them now. I will do a 2 for 1 on this series as I am trying to build point on PBS. So choose your one book and then PM me with the name of the other with a 2nd choice. Your first choice will be yours if no one else has automatically taken it first. If somehow that has happened, the automatic will have the book and I'll send you the second book. I will try to contact you first.
This book is signed by the author to a Canadian friend of hers named Cheryl.It is a first paperback edition.
This is a duplication of the info I posted when I posted her 4th book in this series but I know it's helpful when you are trying to get a whole series. Ms. Simpson's character development did improve as the series progresses.
Here are the others in the series that I will be listing.I've seen some of the ones I'm missing here on PBS.
1st Lord St. Claire's Angel - This one here's quote from the back cover "On the shelf miss Celestine sumons was past the age when a woman could hope to marry. Still she counted herself blessed for she held a good position as governess in the household of the Marquess of Ladymead. But when the Marquess's brother, the handsome Lord Justin St. Claire, arrived for the Christmas season Celestine's lonely heart caught fire."
2nd Lady Delafont's Dilemna
3rd Lady May's Folly
4th Miss Truelove Beakens -
5th Belle of the Ball
6th The Rakes Redemption
(7th don't have this but the last time I looked it is available here - A Country Courtship...I've read it and it's good)
8th A Matchmaker's Christmas - in my opinion, one of her best.
There are 4 more which I think belong to this series but I'm not sure so am not listing them here. I'm going to try to get them and if they go with the series will list them later.