Servants know everything. Never trust them. Never fall in love.
Ellen, a young maid in the 1840s, enters service at the declining Markham Thorpe: a house where the relationship between masters and servants is not quite as it should be. There's one clear reason for this, sitting bang in the middle of this mess of sex, power, money and intrigue: the charismatic housekeeper, Mrs Rundell, whose agendas are complex and whose enemies are growing...
British author Titchmarsh (Rosie) brings the art world alive in this engaging romantic drama. In 2007, James "Jamie" Ballantyne reconnects with childhood chum and flame, Artemis "Missy" King, who resurfaces in the showroom of Jamie's auction house in Bath to bid on a painting on behalf of her grandfather. The reunited couple discover that a set of paintings by Sir Alfred James Munnings, owned by Missy's grandfather (himself owner of an established fine art gallery), are fakes. Their investigation reveals a long thread of family secrets and the source of the feud between their two families, revelations that cause the couple to split up. Titchmarsh alternates between the present and the story of Jamie's grandfather, Harry Ballantyne, and Missy's grandmother, Eleanor King, who met as art students at Oxford. The effect is nostalgic and builds anticipation and curiosity in the history of the two families, including the story behind the lost love of their grandparents.