It is 1818, and Elizabeth and Fitzwilliam Darcy's five daughters have left their country home to spend some months in the dashing and dangerous world of Regency London.
It is a time of change in social attitudes and political thought, with the privileges of aristocrats and the conservatism of landowners being challenged by new men and radical thinkers. But women still play little part in this wider world, and Camilla Darcy finds how limited are the options open to an intelligent, independent-minded young woman, and how unforgiving even this apparently liberal society is to those who transgress its rules.
The sisters are assailed from all sides by lavish parties, temptations and hidden schemes, not to mention the inevitable heartbreaks arising from close proximity to so many eligible men. Camilla's sense of humour and clear mind might be enough to save her from London's excesses, but will she be able to save her sisters, too?
In WAY OF THE WORLD Elizabeth Aston presents an array of memorable nineteenth-century characters - beautiful, naive, mischievous and downright wicked - in a witty and perceptive tale reminiscent of the novels of Georgette Heyer, spiced with a generous dash of Jane Austen.