The Lost Heiress
Ladies of the Manor, 1
Brook Eden has never known where she truly belongs. Though raised in the palace of Monaco, she’s British by birth and was brought to the Grimaldis under suspicious circumstances as a babe. When Brook’s friend Justin uncovers the fact that Brook is likely a missing heiress from Yorkshire, Brook leaves the sun of the Mediterranean to travel to the moors of the North Sea to the estate of her supposed family.
The mystery of her mother’s death haunts her, and though her father is quick to accept her, the rest of the family and the servants of Whitby Park are not. Only when Brook’s life is threatened do they draw close–but their loyalty may come too late to save Brook from the same threat that led to tragedy for her mother.
As heir to a dukedom, Justin is no stranger to balancing responsibilities. When the matters of his estate force him far from Brook, the distance between them reveals that what began as friendship has grown into something much more. But how can their very different loyalties and responsibilities ever come together?
And then, for a second time, the heiress of Whitby Park is stolen away because of the very rare treasure in her possession–and this time only the servants of Whitby can save her.
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- When Brook asks Justin to look into her history, she has no idea if they’ll find that she’s a nobody or, in fact, a princess—but she just wants to know. In her position, would you have sought the truth or been content to live in Monaco as part of the Grimaldi family?
- One of Justin’s reasons for returning to Monaco one last time is to try to reconcile his father and grandfather. Have you ever been caught in the middle in a family argument? Are you the peacemaker, or have you chosen a side?
- Deirdre agrees to help someone she doesn’t trust in order to provide for her family. Do you think she’s justified? Would you have done the same in her position?
- Who is your favorite character? Why? Your least favorite?
- What did you think of the staff of Whitby Park at the beginning of the story, and then at the end? Did you understand their reception of Brook?
- Justin learns a disappointing truth about his family and his own birth. How would you have responded in his situation?
- Do you believe in curses? What were your thoughts about the story of the Fire Eyes?
- How could Brook and Justin better have handled their relationship after he returns from his travels? Did you commiserate more with one of them than the other?
- In many ways, Whitby’s quiet but solid faith provides a major theme: that only when we fall to our knees in dejection do we truly discover what it is to depend on the strength of the Lord. Have you ever been at that point in your life? How did it play out for each of the major characters?
- What did you think of the answers Brook finally discovers about her mother and maman? How did you think she and Deirdre would get out of their trying situation?
- What do you think will become of the Fire Eyes next? Do you think Brice was wise or foolish to take them? What kind of story do you hope he’ll find in the next book, The Reluctant Duchess?