Seventeen-year-old Lucinda Beckford is going to her very first ball, the Midwinter Ball, hosted by local lawyer Ambrose Leitch.
There she meets his clerk, Reuben Turner, and before the evening is out, it is obvious to everyone at the ball that the two will be married.
They wish to wed, but Lucinda’s father Josiah says she is too young.
Reuben is packed off to London to work for six months, with the promise that if the young lovers still feel the same way when he returns, Josiah will give his blessing.
But when Reuben tragically dies, heartbroken Lucinda vows she will never marry.
Adam Lennox has also had his heart broken.
Ever since Adam’s parents died and he went to live with his Uncle William and his children – Giles and Georgiana – Giles has taken delight in ruining Adam’s life.
While training as a physician, Giles wed Adam’s sweetheart, Amelia. But the marriage was full of nothing but violence and abuse and when Giles has Amelia placed in an asylum, she dies in Adam’s arms.
Amelia was simply one more cruel game to Giles, but Adam cannot forgive himself for not protecting the love of his life from his cousin.
He joins Wellington’s Army, desperate to atone for his sins by helping others, although some think he is simply hoping to die on the battlefield.
When Adam is shot in action, he returns to England, only to discover that his family is bankrupt, and Giles has set his sights on the lovely Lucinda Beckford. Adam is determined to save her from Giles, but how can he help her, when Lucinda’s hatred for Giles is extended to Adam as well?
Filled with intrigue and conspiracy, Fortune’s Promise is a clever historical novel featuring the strong and feisty Lucinda Beckford, a woman so determined to save herself, she can’t see those wanting to help her.
This was an emotional romance novel that put new meaning into the phrase “pulls at the heartstrings”. Sue Johnson knows how to create a story that will draw you in and keep you glued to the pages, instinctively forcing yourself to read to the very end.
The plot is well written with realistic and complex character that are drawn in a vivid manner. Some you will hate with a passion and hope that they meet a bitter end by the conclusion. One of the main characters, Adam, is painted wrongly as the scoundrel by a jealous monster and he must work hard to overcome the mistaken implication. Others allow themselves to be horribly manipulated into making life harder than it should. Lucinda, despite how hard her life has been and what a bad hand she was dealt, was portrayed as a strong, fearless woman who is not going to allow herself to be forced into darkness.
There were so many emotional ups and down woven throughout the story I found it hard to put aside. Thankfully I had the electronic version so I was taking it with me everywhere and reading it in every spare minute I could find even while waiting in the checkout line at the grocery store!
I enjoyed reading this and hope others find their way to her book.
Thank you to Netgalley and Endeavor Press for allowing me to review this book.
*synopsis and pic from netgalley.com