Prima ballerina Lydia Kusminskaya, whose talents saved her from starvation in imperial St Petersburg, trusted her beauty to secure her place in the gilded cocoon of the court – unaware of the cataclysm about to destroy it, and her hopes.
Eighty years later, in London, the legacy of Lydia’s beauty snares a woman and two men in the trap of their own obsessions: Alexander Wolfe, the desirable American who worships women and glamour; formidable businesswoman Bianca Berrisford, who believes beauty always has its price; and Lovat Whitburn, her bitter ex-husband, for whom beauty, once an ideal, is now a weapon.
Now the three are chained to Lydia and each other in a lethal struggle for wealth, love and, above all, power. But the illusion of beauty which betrayed Lydia is lying in wait for them, too . . .
‘A breathtaking achievement’ Woman’s Own
‘Ms Brayfield knows what she is doing . . . her women sound and act like real women’ Anthony Burgess in the Independent
‘A wonderfully written novel about men, women and a burning obsession’ Me