The Ambitious Stepmother (Countess Ashby 3)

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9780007134274: The Ambitious Stepmother (Countess Ashby 3)

Next in Fidelis Morgan’s hugely entertaining series featuring the irrepressible Countess Ashby de la Zouche and her stupendously bosomed former maid, Alpiew.

The Countess Ashby de la Zouche would not be every parent’s choice of chaperone for a beautiful teenager, and still fewer would entrust her with finding the girl a suitable husband – in France, of all places. The second Mrs Alderman Franklyn-Green, however, is willing to go to any lengths to get rid of her unwanted stepdaughter Virginia. And the promise of 100 guineas and a sojourn in the land of gay balls and all-night gambling is sufficient to secure the Countess’s services, even if the girl is a complete shrew.

Sadly, the exiled English Court at St Germain is far from the den of iniquity the Countess and her maidservant Alpiew were hoping for. Worse, any hopes of enjoying fine French cuisine are dashed when a fellow guest is poisoned.

Once more the Countess and Alpiew are plunged into a dangerous investigation In addition to unravelling plots against three kings and negotiating the culinary eccentricities of the Court of Versailles, our sleuths encounter the Bastille’s most mysterious prisoner, and discover – among other depravities – the peculiar employment Lord Whippingham has devised for young women with strong teeth.

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Review:

‘Fidelis Morgan’s tale of love and greed and alchemy in 1699 is a heady compound of wit, wisdom and wildness. It’s an unsentimental warts-and-all portrait that reeks of authenticity, written with a brio that reflects the age’
Val McDermid

‘Hilarious 17th century romp, which combines an authentic slice of history with a tantalising storyline. An authority on the era, Morgan has created an inventive book which wears its learning lightly. Colourful turns of phrase and witty descriptions – leave you with a keen sense of the period’ Daily Mail

‘A lusty, audacious historical romp …all the bawdiness of London at the turn of the 18th century is brought to life’ Maxim Jakubowski, Guardian

‘Thigh-slapping, exclamatory stuff … loudly, lustily, enthusiastically done’ Literary Review

‘The perfect autumn read’ Marie Claire

From the Publisher:

A rollicking good read, with a highly appealing central character.

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Morgan, Fidelis
Published by HarperCollins Publishers Ltd (2003)
ISBN 10: 0007134274 ISBN 13: 9780007134274
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Morgan, Fidelis
Published by HarperCollins Publishers Ltd (2003)
ISBN 10: 0007134274 ISBN 13: 9780007134274
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Book Description HarperCollins Publishers Ltd, 2003. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # P110007134274

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