Cover photo © PeriodImages.com
Background photo © iStockPhoto.com
Cover design by KGee Designs
Paperback ISBN: 978-1-946271-12-9
Apple Books ISBN: 978-1-946271-11-2
When Viscount Jasper Henley is caught kissing a marquess’ niece in the gardens during a ball, he agrees to marry the girl. It’s not the first time he’s been forced to marry—he and his late wife had been caught kissing in front of the same fountain prior to his marriage proposal—but he had always intended to marry Sophie.
While on a visit to London to visit her uncle and his new wife, Marianne Slater is happy to attend the Season’s entertainments—even if she can’t see very well. The world is a blur unless it’s close-up. Usually a wallflower at balls, Marianne is stunned when a gentleman approaches and offers to escort her in the gardens. A clear-eyed innocent kiss suddenly results in the blurry whirlwind of a quick wedding and its subsequent aftermath.
Determined to show his new bride the wonders of the ancient world as part of his next archaeological expedition—their wedding trip—Jasper will do whatever it takes to see to it Marianne can see more clearly. But as things come into focus for her, Jasper may find his own vision clouded by an unexpected revelation. Can the insights he discovers from bits of history open his eyes to future possibilities? He may prefer blindness in The Vision of a Viscountess.
“She’s blind, Henley. Surely you noticed,” the Marquess of Devonville stated.
Jasper gave a start, despite his intention to appear nonplussed by the marquess’ manner. “She is not blind,” he countered with a shake of his head. “Near-sighted, surely, but not blind.”
Devonville gave a shake of his own head. “She may as well be blind. She can only see things when they are close up—”
“A pair of spectacles will solve that problem,” Jasper said with a shrug. When the marquess’ face appeared more pinched than normal, he sighed. “What is it?”
Allowing a sigh of his own, Devonville said, “Apparently, she has a pair. She was wearing them when she arrived in London, but ever since Cherice welcomed her into our home, she hasn’t worn them. In his last letter, my brother mentioned she went about wearing them everywhere she went in Canobie. Wore them quite regularly. But since she’s been here, she’s quite stubborn about refusing to wear them.”
Jasper frowned. Had Cherice spoken with her? Explained that eyeglasses were not regarded kindly by the Beau Monde?
Which had him wondering why lorgnettes and quizzing glasses were acceptable eyewear for members of the ton, but spectacles were not.
Half the members of the Royal Society wore eyeglasses, and yet their use was expected if for no other reason than they added an aura of wisdom to men who were already seen as experts in their fields. “How bad can they be?” Jasper countered.
The marquess rolled his eyes. “Have you ever seen a pair of Martin’s Margins?” he asked rhetorically. “With clear glass lenses?”
The viscount’s eyes darted to one side, as if he thought he might find the offending eyewear standing next to him. “I may have,” Jasper hedged, realizing he had never paid much attention to eyewear. A few of his colleagues wore spectacles. His uncle used a pair of bifocals when he was doing his books and for reading. They made him appear wiser. Older, too, but then the man was well into his fifties.
“They’re hideous,” Devonville stated, his thumbs and forefingers forming ‘O’s that he then raised to frame his eyes. “Ugly black circles with even uglier...” he motioned with his fingers to indicate the hinged sides that had to wrap around the head.