DIARY OF AN ACCIDENTAL WALLFLOWER – Jennifer McQuiston
The Seduction Diaries , Book 1
Miss Clare Westmore, daughter of a viscount, spent her first Season ingratiating herself with popular members of the ton . If that meant hiding her brains, so be it. She also picked out her future husband, Mr. Charles Alban, recently named heir presumptive to the Duke of Harrington. Though her mother keeps pushing her onto another, Clare believes it will just take a couple more waltzes with Alban before he seeks out her father to ask for her hand. A trip to the park to feed the ducks with her younger sister and brother puts paid to the immediate fulfillment of those wishes. Clare is attacked by a hungry goose, and ends up with a badly turned ankle...and Lady Austerley's ball is that night! Clare manages to hide her injury from her mother, but she is forced to put up with sneers from her “friends” and sit out the dances in wallflower row.
Lady Austerley is an elderly widow with a failing heart who wishes to spend what time she has left enjoying Society. She keeps a caring young doctor on call and asks him for a tonic to get her through the evening and invites him to attend the ball. While there he can't help but notice a beautiful young lady sitting out the dancing. Being an excellent observer, he catches sight of one of her feet in a large boot.
Clare is confronted by a most handsome man, though his clothing is rather poor for a gentleman. She's affronted by his offer to examine her, but assents when she learns he's lady Austerley's personal physician. As they leave for the library, Clare sees Lady Sophie dancing and smiling with Mr. Alban! Some friend!
The handsome young man is Doctor Daniel Merial who left a practice in the north six months ago to study anesthetics. He's developing a device to deliver just enough of the gas…not too little, not too much. Meanwhile he lives in a rundown rooming house in a bad neighborhood, teaches anatomy with cadavers and works at a clinic for the poor. He admires Lady Austerley and hopes his connection to her will bring him other paying patients.
For two people with such diametrically opposite ambitions and ways of life, their attraction to each other is foolhardy at best. No matter the lustful thoughts—new to Clare—she still wants her duke, and Daniel has nothing fit to offer a lady.
DIARY OF AN ACCIDENTAL WALLFLOWER delivers a suspenseful story with several plot twists and a cast of well done characters that includes Clare's quirky family. Not least of the interesting characters is the author herself. Check out www.jenmcquiston.com/ .