The Lie and the Lady: A Winner Takes All Novel
In The Game and the Governess the earl switched places with his secretary, and both fell in love. Discovering that one’s love interest is more eligible than one assumes is one thing, but finding he is less is another. This Regency romance sequel follows the fate of the less fortunate pair, driven apart by ‘the Lie’. John Turner returns to run the family’s struggling flour mill, while Letty, the widowed (and impoverished) Countess Churzy, endures not just personal betrayal, but social humiliation and ridicule. Fleeing to France, she meets Sir Barty, older and crippled by gout, but kindly. He promises to take care of her, but when they return to his estate in rural Lincolnshire, she meets a difficult prospective step-daughter, a hostile community, a blackmailer, and… John Turner, the local mill owner.
Letty navigates these challenges with skill, resourcefulness, and courage, winning widespread respect and gratitude. Despite the rather melodramatic climax, the author handles her material with a deft and humorous touch, as she explores how restrictive social conditions affect women in this era. Recommended.