A Spear of Summer Grass

A Spear of Summer Grass

Deanna Raybourn

Language: English

Pages: 384

ISBN: 0778314391

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub

Paris, 1923
The daughter of a scandalous mother, Delilah Drummond is already notorious, even among Paris society. But her latest scandal is big enough to make even her oft-married mother blanch. Delilah is exiled to Kenya and her favorite stepfather's savanna manor house until gossip subsides.
Fairlight is the crumbling, sun-bleached skeleton of a faded African dream, a world where dissolute expats are bolstered by gin and jazz records, cigarettes and safaris. As mistress of this wasted estate, Delilah falls into the decadent pleasures of society.
Against the frivolity of her peers, Ryder White stands in sharp contrast. As foreign to Delilah as Africa, Ryder becomes her guide to the complex beauty of this unknown world. Giraffes, buffalo, lions and elephants roam the shores of Lake Wanyama amid swirls of red dust. Here, life is lush and teeming—yet fleeting and often cheap.
Amidst the wonders—and dangers—of Africa, Delilah awakes to a land out of all proportion: extremes of heat, darkness, beauty and joy that cut to her very heart. Only when this sacred place is profaned by bloodshed does Delilah discover what is truly worth fighting for—and what she can no longer live without.

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“No, but we received a cable only an hour ago from Narok. The gentleman was most particular about the wording on the card. He must be quite an ardent collector.” I reached up and kissed him on the cheek, leaving a scarlet impression of lipstick behind. He coughed and looked immensely pleased. “He is not a collector at all, Mr. Hillenbrank. But he is a hell of a stayer.” With that, I stepped aside then as the crowd moved forward to get a better look. I walked straight out of the

way to straight dirt, but that didn’t slow him down. My grandfather always swore it was better to drive as fast as possible on a dirt road because you were halfway through the next bump by the time you felt the first. Ryder seemed to believe the same. We flew down the road, raising a cloud of dust that must have been visible for miles across the savannah. Ryder didn’t say a word, but his silence was comfortable. He wasn’t upset in the least. My silence was different. Mine had sharp edges and

curled a bit. She wasn’t a particularly attractive woman, but she did scorn well. “Yes, his job,” Miss Halliwell said firmly. “And furthermore—” “Oh, will the lot of you shut up before you give me indigestion?” Sybil Balfour spoke up sharply. She reached down under the table and pulled out a tiffin box which she proceeded to fill with the contents of her dinner plate. “Sybil, darling, you do a better job at hostessing my parties than I do!” Helen said, almost sincerely. She looked

in front. Gideon followed, and suddenly only Ryder and I were left. One of those scaly monsters opened his mouth and a small white bird hopped inside, pecking delicately at the morsels lodged between the monstrous teeth. “Come on, princess. Before the crocs go back in and decide you look tasty.” He took my hand and waded forward. I put one foot in front of the other, but my body moved of its own accord. My mind had pushed everything aside except those eyes, those hungry, waiting eyes

so very, very much,” he added with an apologetic smile. “So we struck a bargain. We would stay and she would try to make herself a proper wife when I needed her to. When I was off on business in Nairobi, she would be free to do as she pleased. I had no idea how bad she’d got until a few years ago when I came home early and found—” He broke off again, and I gave him an innocent smile. “I can imagine.” “Can you? I don’t know. Poor Helen. She always manages to choose badly. I came home

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