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Her Heart for a Compass by Sarah Ferguson review – Mills & Boon debut is chaste good fun

The romance of her heroine’s ‘rebellious’ red hair is much more of a feature in the Duchess of York’s historical novel than sex

She is a spirited, Titian-haired, freckled beauty, whose curls just won’t quit. While initially submitting to the strictures of high society and the tribulations of the marriage market, she endures a pasting from the press before emerging triumphant, throwing off the weight of expectations to become her true self. And write a children’s book.

The heroine of the Duchess of York’s debut novel for adults, Lady Margaret Montagu Douglas Scott, bears no small resemblance to its author, in both looks and life story. Her Heart for a Compass is out on Tuesday from romance publisher Mills & Boon, but readers hoping for the sexy shenanigans usually found in the publisher’s output will be disappointed. While Margaret indulges in a handful of kisses, and at one point has a man “adjusting his kilt, swearing under his breath”, the pleasures she experiences are all very much above the waistline.

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Ethel Carnie Holdsworth: campaigners push to revive fame of working-class novelist

Thought to be the first blue-collar female novelist, Holdsworth once outsold HG Wells. Now reprints ...

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Crime novelist Mo Hayder dies aged 59 from motor neurone disease

Clare Dunkel, who was diagnosed only months ago, wrote 10 thrillers under the pen name and has been ...

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Ancient Gilgamesh tablet seized from Hobby Lobby by US authorities

The craft store had acquired the 3,600-year-old artefact for its Bible museum, but court says it had...

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Cornel West accuses Harvard University of ‘spiritual bankruptcy’

Author and activist announced his departure in March but has now published resignation letter which ...

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Exhibition reveals how Shakespeare’s Hal has excused royal heirs for centuries

New show uncovers a long tradition for princes of Wales to excuse their own behaviour by comparing i...

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Marcus Rashford scores in book charts with You Are a Champion

Public sympathy for the defeated England striker has sent sales rocketing for his inspirational lif...

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