Kate Taylor has grown up alone. She doesn’t remember her parents and anonymous benefactors paid for her education at a respectable school. She has now the resident music tutor for young gently-bred ladies in the seaside village of Spindle Cove.
For the past year, Corporal Samuel Thorne has been living in a small village, hiding a very big secret. The first time he heard Miss Kate Taylor singing in the tea shop, he was instantly enchanted. The moment she turned her profile and revealed a birthmark, he recognized her from his youth. They spent their early years in the same London brothel, where their mothers were prostitutes.
Desperate to hide her past from her, Thorne keeps Kate at a distance, while secretly pining for her. That is until one day he is bitten by an adder (while trying to save Kate’s life, of course) and as she nurses him back to health, the truth of her past come out, along with the secret of Thornes true feelings.
As their feelings develop, Thorne and Kate are ready to marry. Until one day the real truth about Kate’s family comes out. Not only is she legitimate, she’s titled and rich! How will Thorne, the prostitute’s son, ever be able to compete with the dandies of the ton? He is willing to step back and let Kate enter the bosom of the family she always dreamed of. But will Kate risk losing her true heart’s desire?