USA Today Bestseller From the USA Today bestselling author of A Lasting Impression and A Beauty So Rare comes an exquisite historical novel set against the real history of Belle Meade Plantation in Nashville, TN that explores the struggles of real people of the post-war South and the journeys of a man and a woman scarred by betrayal. Olivia Aberdeen, destitute widow of a man shot as a traitor to the South, is shunned by proper society and gratefully accepts an invitation from "Aunt" Elizabeth Harding, mistress of Belle Meade Plantation. Expecting to be the Harding's head housekeeper, Olivia is disillusioned when she learns the real reason Elizabeth's husband, Confederate General William Giles Harding, agreed to her coming. Not finding the safe haven she expects, Olivia is caught off guard by her feelings for Ridley Adam Cooper, a Southern man who seems anything but a Southern gentleman.
Branded a traitor by some, Ridley Cooper, a Southern son who chose to fight for the Union, is a man desperate to end the war still raging inside him. Determined to learn "the gift" that Belle Meade's head horse trainer and former slave, Bob Green, possesses, Ridley harbors secrets that threaten both their lives.
As Ridley seeks to make peace within himself for "betraying" the South he loved, Olivia is determined to never be betrayed again.
[Excerpt from Chapter 1]"...Settled on the carriage seat, Olivia drew in a deep breath, the first in what felt like five years. She knew it was wrong, what she was feeling. Because a widow of only a week shouldn't wish to dance a jig. But God help her, that's precisely what she wanted to do. Not on the grave of her recently deceased husband, of course--that would be considered rude. Just off to the side would suffice."