It is amazing what a little lie can do. We let other people lie to us when we know the truth. The most harm is done when we lie to ourselves.
This isn't me waxing philosophical, but the point of this story. Nobody really seems who they are and everyone is trying very hard to be someone else. Lilley Smith pretends to be a file clerk. She's not very good because she has dyslexia but believes that really she's stupid because her father told her that. She knows she could be more, but it is easier to let the lie stay in place and be what she isn't. Also, her last name isn't Smith. It's Hainsbury.
Alessandro Caetani is a prince, but he isn't because he doesn't want to be one. He's a bit cold and calculated. He hides behind sex because he would rather not have any messy emotional contact with the opposite sex. He uses his position to control those around him and any situation he is in. He also has a deep and abiding hatred for anyone named Hainsbury.
So how do our heroine and hero get around this sizable impasse? They don't tell the truth. Well, up to the moment Lilley finds herself pregnant and then they are rather careful with the truth. I shan't tell you how this all works out as that would spoil things a bit.
I am impressed with how Jennie Lucas handled the topic of dyslexia. It was considerate and thoughtful. She gave the subject the gravitas it deserves. How a person processes the written word or number is very important to our society and we make judgments based on that process. Ms. Lucas shows how we can get it all so very wrong.
The writing in this story is good and occasionally, very strong. The dyslexia sideline is slipped in amongst the usual smoldering glances and bickering banter. It was a good read but I probably won't read it a second time.