Bella is an actress finding fame on the theatre scene in London, while trying to keep her past a secret. Bella is a rising star in the London theatre world, she has plenty of admirers but avoids getting too close as she has a past she is ashamed of and wants to keep hidden. Rupert is rich, young and handsome and very persistent, he sends her flowers and watches every performance before finally asking her out. A whirlwind romance leads to him proposing, and Bella accepts although she isn't completely sure she loves him.
Click here to see the rest of this review
She goes down to Rupert's family home in the countryside to meet her future in-laws, only to discover that another guest is Steve, her ex boyfriend from many years ago who left her when she needed him most, and knows all her secrets. Other guests are Rupert's distant cousin Chrissie who hates Bella on sight as she is in love with Rupert, and Chrissie's brother Lazlo who seems to realise that Bella does not have deep feelings for Rupert, and suspects her past with Steve. He continually teases her and tests her, and Bella is unable to cope with the close proximity of Steve, who she believes still loves her, so she breaks things off with Rupert and flees back to London.
Lazlo runs clubs in South America, and it turns out he has an ongoing feud with a gang over there, which began over a girl many years before. Criminals working for the gang leader kidnap Chrissie, and then a few days later Steve, who is working for the gang, lures Bella into a trap that ends up with her captured along with Chrissie. Bella has to hold Chrissie together, telling her how devastated Rupert was when she was taken, and that he really does love her after all, whilst realising that she is actually in love with Lazlo.
Bella makes friends with one of the kidnappers and gets him to send a message to Lazlo, in return for promising to help the kidnappers sick son. Lazlo brings the police to the rescue, and Rupert and Chrissie announce their love for each other. Lazlo hides his feelings for Bella; he has realised he loves her, but he knows the leader of the gang is not caught and is scared that he will go after Bella if he finds out how Lazlo feels. Bella is distraught, until finally Lazlo returns having captured the gang leader and professes his love for her.
Best part of story, including ending:
I enjoyed the sniping between Bella and Lazlo at the beginning of the book, it is entertaining and well written
Best scene in story:
I liked the kidnapping section, Bella's struggle to hold herself and Chrissie together is realistic and touching
Opinion about the main character:
I didn't really understand Bella's need to keep her past a secret, there is nothing that shameful about it