- Title: Reforming the Rogue (a novella)
- Originally Published Title: Love Lessons
- Author: Donna Lea Simpson
- Genre: Regency Romance
- Story Takes Place: London, England
- Published Date: September 15, 2013
- Published By: Beyond the Page Publishing
- Pages: 82 estimated – ebook
- Reader: a lover of the Regency Era
- ASIN: B00F8IAMKM
About the Author: In the last eleven years Donna Lea Simpson has published 20 novels combining mystery and romance genre. Her writing was influenced by her love of authors Jane Austen and Agatha Christie. She is presently living in Canada. Please click here to get to know the author in more detail. http://www.donnaleasimpson.com/AboutTheAuthor.html
About the Story: Cedric, Earl of Cairngrove, was determined to marry his mistress, Jessica–something an earl just did not do. The ton would destroy the reputation of both the earl and his bride. Jessica’s family had fallen upon hard times and Jessica being one of the older children was left no choice but to work. Her dramatic flair and lovely face and body earned her a place in the theatre. However, actresses were chosen to be mistresses among the ton. Jessica had never taken a protector, but there was something that drew her to Cedric so she accepted to be his mistress. They were soul mates from the beginning and couldn’t help but fall in love. Cedric wanted to marry her, but how could society allow such a thing. How could the ton accept? Could Jessica live through the disgrace of her impoverished beginnings? How could he convince Jessica that she was the one for him and that she wouldn’t bring dishonor to his family?
Cedric’s brother, Dominic Barton, thought Cedric’s marriage would bring dishonor to the family and dishonor to him. He had to convince Cedric and Jessica that the match shouldn’t take place. But when he met the lovely Linnet Pelham, Jessica’s friend and companion, he had difficulty focusing on his goal –to separate Cedric and Jessica for good. When he met Jessica, he saw in her a good heart, and she truly loved Cedric. He also knew that Cedric was completely smitten by her.
Linnet Pelham did not want to follow Jessica’s path in life. She, however, had recently lost her teaching job, so was forced to remain with Jessica until she could find other work. When Dominic pressed himself on her, thinking she was mistress material, he thought she would accept, but Jessica wanted a marriage of love, not to be a mistress.
What I Took Away From The Story: It’s about change. Change can occur within society only when society understands that relationships and love are more important than following traditions and what was once acceptable. It’s also a story of personal change. Change does not take hold unless the change comes from within a person–that they see the better path.
I would have liked to see the story be longer, it could have been easily made into a novel rather than a novella. That is a personal preference. I enjoy the in-depth getting to know the characters in a story.