In a time of war and upheaval in England, their forbidden passion binds them together against all odds. Charlotte Pruitt throws off the norms of Georgian society and discovers her sensual power in the arms of a soldier named James Clarke, whom she has adored from the moment her eyes fell upon him.
He must be, she says, the most favoured by fortune of any gentleman I have yet beheld. This troubled, passionate war hero offers her a world of awakened senses and intimacy beyond anything she's ever imagined in the embrace of her husband, Audley. However, after Audley's murder, James's dreadful madness and a stranger's horrific revenge their fragile world is being threatened. The harrowed couple vow to face these challenges together, but all too soon, Charlotte finds she must summon all her inner strength to fight alone to save her lover and their bastard son.
From the mist-bound northern mountains of England, to sunlit Venice and the flower-scented shores of Lake Como, this epic tale of illicit love and its consequences reaches across gothic Europe, and all the expanse of the human heart.