The Wild Card

Written by Beth Elliott
Review by Mike Ashworth

London 1810. Kitty Towers has been sent to London to stay with an elderly aunt with the aim of mixing with the capital’s society. An independent-minded young woman, she considers society life frivolous, and determines not to be drawn into the empty social whirl where the main objective is to find a suitable husband. Despite her best intentions, she finds herself drawn to Theo Weston, an ex-soldier and well-known rake, while her aunt would like her to be more encouraging to Etienne de Saint Aubin, an aristocratic refugee from France. However, Kitty soon comes to realise that the seemingly frivolous society that she has become part of has dark undercurrents, and she finds herself unwittingly involved in a plot to remove Wellington from his command in Spain.

An enjoyable read. The characters are well defined, and Kitty Towers is a strong, believable heroine while the plot provides a plausible vehicle which takes the romantic core of the novel forward to its satisfactory end. This is Beth Elliott’s first published novel, and I look forward to reading her next one.