Sunday, November 16, 2014
A New York Christmas by lingeAnne Perry
This is the twelfth in Perry's series of Christmas novellas, featuring supporting characters from her two Victorian mystery series. In this book, set in New York City in 1904, that character is Jemima Pitt, the 23-year-old daughter of Charlotte and Thomas Pitt. Jemima has been hired to be the companion and chaperone of British heiress Delphinia Cardew, traveling across the Atlantic to her wedding with Brent Albright. Delphinia is head-over-heels in love with the handsome Brent, giddy with excitement over her high society wedding --- the event of the New York social season --- and too accustomed to having the best of everything and everything her own way, to be aware of the feelings of other people.
But Jemima suspects that the Albrights are more concerned with the merger of the Albright and Cardew international financial empire this marriage represents than with the personal happiness of the young bride-to-be. Jemima's also surprised to discover that Delphinia's mother Maria, whom she assumed was dead, is actually very much alive. According to Brent's older brother Harley, Maria enticed Edward Cardew in marrying her, then abandoned her husband and baby to pursue her own pleasure. Now Harley asks Jemima to help him find Maria and prevent her from showing up at Delphinia's wedding and creating a scandal.