By day, she is Lady Georgiana, sister to a duke, ruined before her first season in the worst kind of scandal. But the truth is far more shocking-in London’s darkest corners, she is Chase, the mysterious, unknown founder of the city’s most legendary gaming hell. For years, her double identity has gone undiscovered…until now.
Brilliant, driven, handsome-as-sin Duncan West is intrigued by the beautiful, ruined woman who is somehow connected to a world of darkness and sin. He knows she is more than she seems and he vows to uncover all of Georgiana’s secrets, laying bare her past, threatening her present, and risking all she holds dear…including her heart.
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When she looked back on the events of her twenty-seventh year of life, Georgiana Pearson would point to the cartoon as the thing that started it all.
The damn cartoon.
Had it been placed in The Scandal Sheet a year earlier, or five years earlier, or a half dozen years later, she might not have cared. But it had run in London’s most famous gossip rag on March the fifteenth.
Beware the Ides, indeed.
Of course, the cartoon was the result of another date entirely. Two months to the day earlier—January the fifteenth. The day that Georgiana, utterly ruined, unwed mother, walking scandal, and sister to the Duke of Leighton, had decided to take matters in hand and return to Society.
And so she stood here, in the corner of the Worthington ballroom, on the cusp of her reentry into Society, keenly aware of the eyes of all London upon her.
It was not the first ball she’d attended since she was ruined, but it was the first at which she was noticed—the first at which she was not masked, either with fabric or paint. The first at which she was Georgiana Pearson, born a diamond of the first water, devolved into a scandal.
The first at which she was present for her public shaming.
To be clear, Georgiana did not mind her ruination. Indeed, she was a proponent of the state for any number of reasons, not the least of which was this: Once ruined, a lady was no longer expected to stand on ceremony.
About the Author
Sarah MacLean grew up in Rhode Island, obsessed with historical romance and bemoaning the fact that she was born far too late for her own season. Her love of all things historical helped to earn her degrees from Smith College and Harvard University before she finally set pen to paper and wrote her first book.
Sarah now lives in New York City with her husband, baby daughter, their dog, and a ridiculously large collection of romance novels. She loves to hear from readers. Please visit her at www.macleanspace.com