When cleaning out my mother’s attic knee-walls I found lots of books, most of which we left there to be sold or tossed. Some were mine from my younger days.
One of these books is The King of the Castle by Victoria Holt that I was sure I’d bought in England until I opened the cover and saw “STOP AND SWAP AT GAIL BORDEN PUBLIC LIBRARY” stamped on the inside front cover.
I don’t remember the plot, but I am sure it involves a woman who is destined to become a governess or something who meets a handsome rich man who she dislikes at first, but falls in love with him and after some drama and scary things happening she knows he loves her too and they wed.
I should know, I read dozens of these Gothic romance books, mostly by Victoria Holt, but also other authors.
The back cover confirms at least some of the above:
She came alone to the legend-haunted chateau, the castle of the notorious Come de la Talle, deep in the wine country of France. From the moment Dallas Lawson arrived, she sensed an atmosphere of tension. She did not know that her arrival was a threat, that they did not want her in their midst, probing dark corners of the family mansion, lifting the dust from age-old family secrets…
She should have turned and run. But Dallas Lawson knew when she set eyes on the King of the castle, the handsome Comte, that she would never leave willingly. What she didn’t know was that she stood a good chance of never leaving at all…alive.
I really should read a Victoria Holt book again, it has been decades.