Beautiful American Willow Telford was only seventeen when she married handsome English aristocrat, Lord Rowell Rochford. Only her father, Willoughby Tetford, a self-made millionaire, was shrewd enough to have any misgivings when his lovely daughter left America. Willow herself, innocent, and deeply in love with her new husband, had complete trust and confidence in the futuBeautiful American Willow Telford was only seventeen when she married handsome English aristocrat, Lord Rowell Rochford. Only her father, Willoughby Tetford, a self-made millionaire, was shrewd enough to have any misgivings when his lovely daughter left America. Willow herself, innocent, and deeply in love with her new husband, had complete trust and confidence in the future as she arrived at Victorian England. Willow happiness seemed complete when Lady Clotilde Rochford, the matriarchal French grandmother, handed her the keys of the house and told she was the new Chatelaine, Willow believed she held the keys not only to the multitude of rooms of which she was now the mistress but also to love and happiness. And when On her arrival, she is greeted warmly by her four brothers-in-law: Tony, quiet and studious; Pelham, teasing and flirtatious; the spoilt Francis; and the sensitive Rupert.Gradually disillusion set in as Rowell proved to be cruel, unfaithful and greedy. Willow didn't know her dowry had saved the Rockford family from destitution or that the estate was ruled by the ruthless Grandmere who would stop at nothing to protect the family's reputation. Old Lady Rochford obsessed with past events, of which Willow is ignorant, wreaks fearful havoc on Willow's life. Although bitterly disappointed with her life, Willow maintained her beauty and dignity as the years passed. The only thing she did know was that over the years, another man was touching her heart, a man who represented everything that her husband was not, stiring her sould, and arousing passions she could not deny.......
|Number of Pages||:||528 Pages|
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The Chatelaine Reviews
4 1/2 Stars It's 1864, the story opens at the Rochford Estate in the nursery where a baby yet named, and her sister are dying from an unknown illness.A distraught young Alice Rochford is beyond grief,with no help from a new young doctor.Her formidable,autocratic mother-in-law who was displeased any ways with Alice for producing girls instead of boys gives no sympathy,and exclaims after their deaths "there must be no more sickly Rochford girls!"A year later Rowell the first of the five healthy, lusty, Rochford boys is born, and on the 6th birthday of her son Francis, Alice dies giving birth not knowing it was a girl.It is now 1889, and the Rochfords are holding a Gala ball in honor of Toby Rochford's 21st birthday. One of the guests there (but not allowed to attend) is 15 year old Willow, a beautiful child/woman who spends the summers with the family while her parents tour Europe.She becomes fast friends with brothers Pelham and Toby ( they have more than friendship feelings for her) but Willow has only eyes for Rowell the oldest,who doesn't even know that she exists.A few years pass and all of a sudden Rowell pays Willow's father a visit and asks for her hand in marriage.It is known to Willow's father that the Rochford Estates are in despair due to Rowell's mis-management and debts.But after much heart felt pleas from his daughter, he gives in with much misgivings, and little did they know her dowry had saved the estate and family from total destitution, or that the estate and family was ruled by the ruthless Grandmere who would stop at nothing and no one to protect the family's reputation.On Willow's honeymoon she feels something is not quite right, but her young heart is so filled with love for her handsome husband, she ignores the warning signs and gives her heart and soul to him.Upon returning to the Estate all is about to change for Willow and she will discover what her "hearts desire" has brought her.CHARACTERS:WILLOW: Beautiful, blond, voluptuous, she gives the best years of her life to a cold uncaring family..her life is forever changed by the brothers and Grandmere.But despite all they do she remains steadfast to her marriage.ROWELL: His marriage to Willow saves his family.Cold, snobbish, unprincipled, he keeps a secret mistress and disregards his wife and her love.TOBY: Rowell's brother, he falls in love with Willow the moment he sees her, unaware he is rousing her to feel the same for him.PELHAM: Rowell's other brother, a handsome charmer, is also attracted to Willow and one day he must leave for he cannot face what he has done to her..and doesn't know what he has left behind.DODY: The young Rochford sister ,abandoned to a tower for her illness must never be allowed to disgrace the family..only Willow risks the wrath of the family to befriend her.GRANDMERE: She rules the Rochford Estate with an iron will and a heart of pure stone.SOPHIA: Willow's daughter, who is stolen from her at birth and raised first in an orphanage..then sent to a convent in France..how much more can this cruel family do to her?If you love a family saga with heaps of drama, mystery, suspense, romance, this is a great first book into the lives of the Rochfords.The only time the story dragged for me was all the "gala's & balls" the family had or attended..I just wanted to go from one drama to another..but that's just a personal thing for me, Id rather have less of the social scene.But a great story! And looking forward to more of this family drama in book 2
This golden oldie from the early eighties hit all of the right notes for me. Plenty of drama as young Willow Tetford marries into the Rochford family, and all of their secrets. You get five brothers, a malicious manipulative grandmama that would make even old Lady Grantham blanch a bit, mistresses, and even a mad person in the attics. Lots of historical details and people, but handled so well that it never became annoying, and plenty of details of life in late Victorian and Edwardian England and France. Worth the effort to find and a real pity that it went out of print. Four stars overall and recommended.
Willow was only seventeen when she married Rowell and left America to become the chatelaine of Rochford Manor. Her happiness seemed complete when she was handed the keys of the Manor, but gradually disillusion set in as Rowell proved to be cruel, unfaithful and greedy. His French grandmother, obsessed with past events, of which Willow is ignorant, wreaks fearful havoc on Willow's life. This is a moving novel of lust, lies, deceit and intrigue; of passions and perversions and, not least, of the powers and the dangers of love.
Great summer read. Don't have to think too hard, kind of soap-opera-ish but sometimes that's just what you need!
Not a major work of fiction but an enjoyable enough book
I enjoyed it, but found it rather samey in places, which made me skip parts. On the whole, it was a good read.
a very slow start, but once the story lifts up, all the drama, love, empire, romance and every other thing is deep. going to buy the sequel soon
What a gem of a book - total page turner, romantic, well paced historical drama