One spectacular Christmas, Lady Perdita Selby, known to her friends and family as Poppy, met the man she thought she would love forever. The devilishly attractive Duke of Fletcher was the perfect match for the innocent, breathtakingly beautiful young Englishwoman, and theirs was the most romantic wedding she had ever seen. Four years later, Poppy and the duke have become the toast of the ton ...but behind closed doors the spark of their love affair has burned out. Fortunately, Poppy has a friend in Jemma the Duchess of ...
One spectacular Christmas, Lady Perdita Selby, known to her friends and family as Poppy, met the man she thought she would love forever. The devilishly attractive Duke of Fletcher was the perfect match for the innocent, breathtakingly beautiful young Englishwoman, and theirs was the most romantic wedding she had ever seen. Four years later, Poppy and the duke have become the toast of the ton ...but behind closed doors the spark of their love affair has burned out. Fortunately, Poppy has a friend in Jemma the Duchess of Beaumont. Jemma, still in the throes of a chess game that could cost her her marriage and her reputation, reveals to Poppy a world of strategy and desire that will change Poppy's whole outlook on love forever.
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In a captivating and beautiful story, we find the beautiful, young, and innocent Lady Perdita (Poppy) who has fallen head over heels in love with the handsome Duke of Fletcher, considered the catch of the season. Fletch feels the same for his beautiful Poppy and patiently awaits their wedding day. Little does he realize that the young and innocent Poppy has not been properly prepared for her wedding night, but instead has been controlled by an overbearing mother who has filled her head with unrealistic expectations of marriage and the marriage bed. Fletch experiences a disappointing wedding night, not understanding that Poppy needs tutoring in the ways of passion and marriage. Instead of being patient and instructing Poppy, Fletch distances himself from his beauty and soon an intense love turns to disappointment and severe loneliness for them both. As four years go by, Fletch even considers obtaining a mistress, but all he can think about is his love and desire for Poppy. Besides, he sees all the infidelity and unhappiness around him in society that brings little happiness to those involved.
Poppy understands that something is seriously wrong with her marriage, doesn?t understand how it can be fixed, and is left heartbroken. How can she bring back the intense love that Fletch had for her at one time? Before the marriage, she always seemed to please him, and since the marriage, everything she does is for Fletch. But that is the sweet Poppy?s main problem; pleasing everyone but herself and in so doing, feels she has accomplished nothing but disappointing the man she loves so intensely. Poppy understands the whole society side of being a duchess, but not a thing about being a true wife, especially because, just as her loving Fletch, she sees nothing but unhappiness in society marriages. Poppy makes the ultimate decision in her yearning for happiness in her life. She walks out on Fletch and her overbearing mother, leaving them both behind, and decides she will enjoy her own life and stop trying to please everyone else. It is not until Fletch loses his precious Poppy that he realizes he must woo her back somehow. Unwilling to lose her, Fletch decides to begin an intense seduction of Poppy that has her head and heart spinning, but not impressed. Can Fletch win back the love of his precious Poppy before Christmas?
In the masterful writing style of Eloisa James, An Affair Before Christmas is a wonderful sensual sequel to the Desperate Duchesses Series. Adding an interesting depth to this story, the reader gets to revisit some of the secondary characters from the first book, like the infamous rake The Duke of Villiers and the dysfunctional Elijah and Jemma, The Duke and Duchess of Beaumont. Ms. James cleverly allows the reader to revisit these dysfunctional characters in order to emphasize and help the reader fully understand how Poppy and Fletch can become so disillusioned about love. An Affair Before Christmas romance is a delightful read and perfect for a holiday that celebrates true love and happiness.
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