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Valerie Fitzgerald
Bantam Books


798 Pages

Book Description
LAURA HEWITT, a proud but penurious Englishwoman, journeys to India in the summer of 1856 as the paid companion to her ninny of a cousin Emily. There Laura meets the mysterious Oliver Erskine, a man with a cruel smile who is rich beyond the dreams of avarice and rules as Zemindar of Hassanganj, a fabled fiefdom within the borders of India. They fall in love just as the subcontinent is rent asunder by the terror of the great India Mutiny.

Mrs. Fitzgerald has given her main character an interesting twist. Laura is not the bosom-heaving love fool who so often serves as the central figure in such novels. Her bodice stays precisely where a lady's is supposed to stay for the entire 800 pages. She is a somewhat starchy Victorian lady of high principles, with a low regard for tomfoolery. Better read and more socially conscious than most of the men she encounters, Laura is an independent woman with a mind of her own who brooks no nonsense.

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