Tell me about your parents. Deceased. My mother was an Italian merchant’s daughter, my father an English lord.
Where have you lived? Italy, England
What is your Job? Viscount, Heir to the Earl of Ivyford
Is marriage in the cards for you? Arranged marriage to Miss Rebecca Devon
Tell me about you friends. At present, though it is difficult to admit, my only companion is my Vizsla, Ajax.
Overall outlook on life. Duty to the family name comes before all else, and sentiment of any sort is dangerous to one’s well-being.
Do you like yourself? At times. As I keep my own company, I find I like myself better than I like most other people.
What, if anything, would you like to change about your life? If I could have prevented smallpox from infecting myself, and my mother, I would. Then she would be alive, my father likely would too, and I might’ve stayed in Italy with them both.
How are you viewed by others? As a scarred, withdrawn, half-breed Italian. They underestimate me. One day, they will all see what I am capable of.
What do you think of your physical appearance? I tower over most Englishmen, which doesn’t help when I desire to go unnoticed in crowds. I have my mother’s dark coloring, and the scars from the disease which claimed her life. High cheekbones, brown eyes. Nothing extraordinary, in my opinion. But a certain young lady has claimed she finds me handsome.
What do people think of your voice? Deep. Bass. Is this even a question? What does it matter?
What are your Strongest and weakest character traits? I am a man of honor, a man of my word. I keep myself closed to others. Exposing my weaknesses in the past resulted in physical and emotional pain. People do not tend to enjoy being around those who are different.
How much self-control do you have? Rather a great deal. Except, it seems, when Miss Devon stubbornly engages me in conversation about our future. She somehow brings out aspects of my personality I’ve tried to keep buried. How does she manage to do that?
What is your biggest fear? Losing someone I love. I’ve been through that too many times already. It’s easier to put away the ridiculous emotion than risk that kind of pain again.
Do you have any talents? I am a talented musician, though it’s something my grandfather wouldn’t have me advertise. A violin tucked beneath my chin puts me at ease. I also enjoy rowing. At university, it was a sport I competed in. I find it relaxes me to row until my arms ache.
What do people like best about you? I haven’t the faintest idea. As I haven’t a high opinion of many people, I imagine very few even bother to consider my character. But then, I suppose my betrothed has said – and who knows what inspired the idea – that I make her feel safe. Strange.
What interests you? My music keeps me interested, but I am finding an increased desire to become involved in politics. As I will one day sit in the House of Lords, I often study current events, the MPs, and I have been following the reports on the war carefully.
What books do you enjoy? Reading is one of my favorite entertainments. I’ve enjoyed Sir Walter Scott’s adventure novels, but I’ve taken to reading a novel Miss Devon enjoys, Mansfield Park. I admit, the author’s writing shows some talent, but I much prefer something less domestic.
What would a great gift for you be? Peace and quiet. Please.
When are you happy? When I’m playing my music, or out with Ajax. I’m not sure happy would be the correct word. I am content.
What makes you angry? Arrogant Englishmen behaving as if they are the only creatures on earth with half a brain. Imbeciles.
What makes you sad? Nothing. I have long since abandoned such a useless emotion.
What makes you laugh? An insipid question. I cannot think when—oh. I suppose Miss Devon made me laugh just the other day. I cannot think when, before…. She has an infectious laugh.
What are your hopes and dreams? To return to Italy one day, see my family there. I miss them. And to perhaps create an amiable match with my betrothed.
What has been the biggest trauma in your life? I was only a child when my mother died, following my illness. All I can remember from those last days with her was pain, the fevers, nightmares. The only thing that helped, that soothed me, was the sound of her voice singing Italian lullabies. And then she grew too ill. And she was gone.
What do you care about most in the world? Upholding the family honor. What else is there?
Do you have a secret? Having a secret would imply I care what people think of me. Although. Miss Devon has been something of a surprise. I’ve written my grandfather about the suitability of the match. I’m not certain this is going to work between us.
What do you like best about the other main characters in your book? That would be Miss Devon, I suppose. She’s an intelligent young woman. I suppose some would say attractive. She laughs and is one of the most cheerful people I’ve ever met. I find it hard to imagine her happy living in my grandfather’s house. She’s kind to everyone around her. She is unfailingly honest. I admire that. So many women of the tonare secretive, or say one thing and mean another. I suppose Miss Devon has many fine qualities. Hm.
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Miss Devon’s Choice: Rebecca Devon lives under the severe eye of her aunt and the iron will of her father. Though she wears what she is told and befriends the people they choose for her, she spends every moment longing to do as she wishes. Knowing freedom will only come through marriage, her hopes for a happy union are stolen away when her father arranges her marriage to a complete stranger.
Christian Hundley, Lord Easton, has learned the hard way that English society won’t accept a person who looks or behaves differently than their ideal. He has hidden himself away from scornful eyes for years, until his aging grandfather takes matters in hand and finds Christian a bride. Knowing he must agree to the marriage, Christian shields his heart. If the whole of society cannot accept him, why should his bride?
Rebecca knows she must have love in her life, but Christian is convinced there is nothing so fraught with danger and pain as entrusting one’s heart to another. Rebecca does everything she can to change his mind, but Christian is determined to remain aloof. Can an arranged marriage ever be anything other than a business partnership?
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Sally Britton is sixth generation Texan, received her BA in English from Brigham Young University, and reads voraciously. She started her writing journey at the tender age of fourteen on an electric typewriter, and she’s never looked back.
Sally lives in Arizona with her husband, four children, and their dog. She loves researching, hiking, and eating too much chocolate.
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