IF THE SLIPPER FITS – Olivia Drake
The Cinderella Sisterhood , Book 1
Cornwall, England, 1836
Left as a baby on the doorstep of a school, Annabelle Quinn has always wanted to know about her family. All of her life she has been dependent on others for her safety. Little better than a scullery maid, Annabelle was responsible for cleaning up after the other girls at the academy to pay for her keep. Even though she had no money, Annabelle was given the very best education herself, thus she could earn her keep as a teacher, and fill in for any other teacher if they were ill. With her eye on her future, Annabelle took advantage of her good fortune and soaked up as much knowledge as she could. She dreams of seeing the world one day, or at least what lies beyond the walls of Miss Baxter's Academy for Young Ladies.
Through a series of strange circumstances, and her own bit of trickery, Annabelle soon finds herself on her way to Cornwall, bound for the remote estate that is Castle Kevern, home of the young Duke of Kevern. Now only eight years old, His Grace, Nicholas Kevern has suffered the tragic loss of both his parents. His uncle, Lord Simon Westbury is the person in charge of his life and his schooling. Next year, Nicholas is to begin his education at Eton, and Simon is determined that he be ready for boarding school.
When Annabelle arrives at the village of Kevernstow, she disembarks from the mail coach at the The Copper Shovel and locates the innkeeper, Mr. Pingilly. He warns her to stay well away from the piskies (pixies or fairies) and sends her on a two mile walk to Castle Kevern. A violent rainstorm throws her into the arms of the furious Lord Simon Westbury.
Soon, Annabelle is settled inside Castle Kevern and finds herself fighting for the boy, Nicholas. The duke definitely needs a woman's influence, not to mention a decent education that he can understand. Currently, he is under the guard of his tutor, the local vicar, Mr. Bunting, who administers boring lessons no eight year old can understand, and terrible beatings. Simon refuses to listen to Annabelle's pleading. He gives her just two weeks to prove her worth before he throws her out of the castle. His aunt, Lady Milford, might have hired Annabelle, but he is in charge of Nicholas's welfare, and he doesn't have to let her stay.
IF THE SLIPPER FITS is a delightful romance straight out of a fairytale, complete with a pair of magic slippers, a few wicked step-sister-like women, and a handsome could-be prince. Annabelle is not a shy flower who will bend to threats. She's a smart-mouthed young woman who speaks her mind if she needs to. Lord Simon desires only to be far away from the castle. He dreams of going back to his regiment—in charge of his soldiers, not a small boy. And he doesn't want to remember the woman who threw him over for his brother, but still, he sees her face every time he looks at her son. Even so, he will do his duty for the next year until he can send Nicholas off to boarding school.
Full of romance, laughter, lots of fun, and a little bit of mystery, IF THE SLIPPER FITS is the first book in a new series, The Cinderella Sisterhood . The characters are all spot-on and this book fits the bill as a perfect romance! I can't wait for the next in the series.