A classic Cinderella slash rags to riches story except with out the happily ever after marriage at the end. I found myself pondering in the first few pages how Nell who emerged from the great fire of London as a orange seller would come to earn the title of "the perfect royal mistress". It panned out for me as a daytime soap opera, with one lucky girl thrust into the middle by chance. All be it was a good soap opera I thoroughly enjoyed it, just as much as gossip mags. It had it all from the one who cried, the one who lies, and the one who gets revenge. With Nell being the center focal point, she never let her emotions cloud her judgement especially if she is to keep her place she had worked so hard for. Nell's quick wit & tongue makes her infectious and contagious to everyone she comes into contact with including the reader. Being a natural thing for a king to take "A" mistress. Charles II took it to the extreme with his lust for women. Frankly he went over board and he could have drowned in a sea of women. You want Nell to win but, what happens if there is no winning at the end of the race. Nels winnings were the unconditional love she felt not just for her lover but for the other special people in her life. I will be adding this book to my library because it is an amazingly upside down love story filled with a exuberant amount of drama.
"Welcome to Nell Gwynne's world and the deliciously complicated triangle in which she learned to live and thrive! From the poverty stricken depths of Coal Yark Alley to the licentious and glittering court of England, Nell was the ultimate survivor. With her beauty and bawdy sense of humor, she not only became the most celebrated actress of her time but the one true love of the powerful King of England and The Perfect Royal Mistress!"