Set in the same time period and location as Bridgerton and Poldark, this Regency romance brings together a wealthy heir and a mysterious young woman as they search for secrets behind a missing a ruby.
Jonathan Gilchrist never wanted to inherit Kettering Hall. A second son, he was content to work as the village apothecary. But when his brother’s death made him heir just as his father’s foolish decisions put the estate at risk, only the sale of a priceless possession—a ruby called the Bevoy—can save the family from ruin. But the gem has disappeared. And all trails lead to Iverness Curiosity Shop—and the beautiful shop girl who may be the answer to his many questions.
Camille Iverness can take care of herself. She’s done so since the day her mother abandoned the family and left Camille to run their shabby curiosity shop. But when a violent betrayal leaves her injured with no place to hide, Camille must allow a mysterious stranger to come to her aid.
Caught at the intersection of blessings and curses, greed and deceit, these two determined souls must unite to protect what they hold dear. But when a passion that shines far brighter than any gem is ignited, they will have to decide how much they are willing to risk for their future, love, and happiness.
Praise for The Curiosity Keeper:
“A delightful read, rich with period details. Ladd crafts a couple the reader roots for from the very beginning and a plot that keeps the reader guessing until the end.” —Sarah M. Eden, bestselling author of For Elise
The first book in the Treasures of Surrey Regency romance series (books do not need to be read in order)Book One: The Curiosity KeeperBook Two: Dawn at EmberwildeBook Three: A Stranger at FellsworthBook length: 89,000 wordsIncludes discussion questions for book clubsChaste, kissing-only Regency romance
In 1812, Camille Iverness works in her father's curiosity shop, selling collectibles, in a rough part of London. She had a more genteel upbringing living on her grandfather's estate, until his death brought about a move to London and into commercial enterprise. Jonathan Gilchrist is drawn to the Iverness Curiosity Shop in search of a valuable ruby stolen from his father, the possession of which can save the Gilchrist family fortune and their estate. Jonathan naturally assumes Camille knows something about the ruby; after someone else appears at the shop seeking it, the subsequent trouble forces Camille to accept help from Jonathan, although she does not trust him. Attraction grows between them even while the gem threatens their developing relationship. Ladd's (The Headmistress of Rosemere) story, with its menace and cast of seedy London characters, feels more like a work of Dickens than a Regency, which may confound Regency fans. A twist near the end provides an element of surprise in a relatively predictable plot. A solid outing.