The Duchess of York has given fans a sneak peak of her debut Mills & Boon novel Her Heart for a Compass, which is set for release later this year.
Sarah Ferguson announced the exciting news on social media on Wednesday, revealing the adult fiction novel is based on the life of one of her ancestors. The ancestor in question is her great-great-aunt Lady Margaret Montagu Douglas Scott.
While the duchess, 61, has written a number of children’s books over the years, the novel is her first attempt at adult fiction.
“I’m delighted to announce my first historical romance novel, Her Heart for a Compass, which will be published in August!” the duchess wrote, alongside a video of herself strolling through the grounds of Windsor’s Royal Lodge in a Victorian-era outfit – in theme with the historical setting of the book. The duchess opted for a floor-length pleated skirt, a fitted overcoat, a high-neck blouse and gloves.
Sarah went on to explain that her new novel is set in the 19th century and “is a coming-of-age story about being brave and rebellious, and daring to follow your heart against the odds”. She added that while the story itself is based on one of her ancestors, it also draws on her own life journey and experiences too.
“I’ve spent the last couple of years doing my own research into my family history with the help of the royal archives. As a result the book is rich in detail of the Victorian era and draws on my own life journey and experiences too — so it is a story very close to my own heart.”
Speaking about how the novel came to be, the duchess also told The Independent: “Although her parents, the Duke and Duchess of Buccleuch were close friends with Queen Victoria and Prince Albert, I was unable to discover much about my namesake’s early life, and so was born the idea which became Her Heart For A Compass.
“With real historical events and facts to hand, my imagination took over … I created a friendship between my heroine and Princess Louise, Queen Victoria’s sixth child, and I drew on many parallels from my life for Lady Margaret’s journey.”
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Fans of the duchess were quick to congratulate her on the upcoming novel, with one writing: “This is amazing! Congratulations.”
Another added: “Congratulations. I’m looking forward to reading it.” While a third wrote: “Fantastic Sarah, I look forward to reading it.”
Her Heart for a Compass, which she co-wrote with historical romance author Marguerite Kaye, will be published on August 3, 2021.
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