First and foremost, while my most recent book, Until She Says Yes, is completely fictional, it is inspired by true stories.
You only need to read the first few pages to learn about Kingsley Goddard proposing to Consuelo Vanderbilt. While it is NOT true that Consuelo Vanderbilt ever received a marriage proposal from Kingsley Goddard, since the man is completely fictional, it is true that she received a marriage proposal that her mother, Alva Vanderbilt forced her to refuse. Alva wanted her daughter to marry an English nobleman and eventually forced Consuelo to marry the Duke of Marlborough in 1895. According to Consuelo’s memoir, The Glitter and the Gold, it was a sad failure. Based on this factual piece of history, I created a scene for my fictional hero, Kingsley.
And although Kingsley Goddard and his family are built from my imagination, there is a story told by Elizabeth Wharton Drexel Lehr in her memoir, King Lehr and the Gilded Age, on which my book is based. Apparently, Elizabeth witnessed Edith Gould dismiss her Italian governess, Anna Maria Lucci because Mrs. Gould had learned that her son was interested in the young woman. Signorina Lucci insisted that Mr. Kingdom did in fact love her, but she was sent away.
After reading Ms. Lehr’s memoir, I was inspired to write the story behind the story to find out what might have happened to those upstairs/downstairs lovers. I hope you’re inspired to find out too.
Until She Says Yes is available at Amazon.