"If adventures will not befall a young lady in her own village, she must seek them abroad." Jane Austen
MISS OTIS REGRETS...
The entirety of Miss Elspeth Otis's inheritance from her wastrel father is a battered old trunk with some scrawled-upon foolscap sheets. Nothing that could free her from a stifling life with her fusty maiden aunties in a musty old cottage in a misty corner of Scotland. Nothing that will give her the life she's always dreamed of—a life full of kindness and kisses and love. Or will it?
Mr. Hamish Cathcart wants more than anything to avoid the hasty marriage to a brewer's daughter his father, the earl, has arranged to revive his fortunes. Hamish's only hope is his failing publishing company, whose only asset is a scandalously banned book by an infamous, but unfortunately deceased, author. But when a new novel written by the same man lands on Hamish's doorstep, he'll go to any length to secure it—any length but love.
This novella was previously released in the anthology Scandal's Daughters.
Quick and Happy
Elspith got two gifts for her birthday, a mop cap from her spinster aunts and a trunk from her father’s sister. The trunk and a visit to her aunt, Lady Ivers, change her life. During her visit she learns things about her father and her life that open up a new world for her – maybe. Lady Ivers has approached Hamish Cathcart, a clever investor, and asked him to invest in a publishing house and a book written by her brother (a less controversial version of the book). He is interested in the book, and when he meets Elspith, he is interested in her. Could that have been part of Lady Ivers’s plan? Will she be able to help Elspith find her happily ever after?
A Fine Madness is a quick happy tale. The story is well written, the characters are likeable, even the spinster aunts, and relatable, and the ending satisfying.