Help A Bitch Out

HaBO: Librarian Needs Help

The wisdom and power of the Bitchery spreads throughout the land! Librarians write in to ask for help: meet Sheila:

I am a librarian and was referred to your blog by another librarian.  I have a patron looking for a book she once read, and I am coming up empty; but I refuse to let her down!  Here is what she remembers:

Peasant girl dancing in ruined castle; dancing alone, but feels a presence; later finds out she was dancing with a ghost
Becomes a princess for a day and goes to a ball
Prince falls in love with her
She turns back into a peasant

A colleague suggested Teresa Medeiros, but I have read through the descriptions of all her titles that were listed on Amazon, and can’t seem to find it (though the description certainly fits in with the based-on-various-fairy-tales plots of most of her books).

Medeiros rocks and rocks hard, but I don’t think this is one of hers. Anyone recognize this romance?

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  1. 1
    FD says:

    I don´t think it´s likely to be the right book – (no peasants, no princes) but The Phantom Lover by Elizabeth Mansfield features a lady falling in love with a ´ghost´.  Very good book too, sadly long out of print.  Other than that I´m coming up blank other than paranormal fantasy and time travelling titles.

  2. 2
    Becca says:

    again, not the right book, but for falling in love with a ghost story, may I recommend Elswyth Thane’s Tryst?  lovely book – my first romance novel.

  3. 3
    Noelle says:

    Maybe Prince of Magic by Anne Stuart?  There are ghosts, though I don’t believe the hero is actually a prince…

  4. 4
    willaful says:

    I just attempted to read Prince of Magic, pretty sure that’s not it. It sounds pretty much like a Cinderella retelling, maybe the AAR fairy tale resource would be a place to check.

  5. 5
    DS says:

    I don’t think that this is the book, but there is a book by Marion Chesney called The Ghost and Lady Alice where the ghost of an 18th century rake helps a servant girl go to a ball. 

    Oh, I loved Tryst also, as well as her WIlliamsburg series that ended with a bit of a ghostly twist.

  6. 6
    SusannaG says:

    Tryst is charming, but definitely not this one.

  7. 7
    JEANETTE JOHNSON says:

    I think I read this. Maybe a Christina Skye timetravel ?

  8. 8
    L. Tinsley says:

    It’s Teresa Mederios The Bride and The Beast

  9. 9
    Abbie says:

    Unrelated, but I LOVE Elswyth Thane! Her Williamsburg novels were my first romances. Sorry, I have no idea what this book is, but I hope someone does. It’s sounds like something I’d like.

  10. 10
    JamiSings says:

    @L. Tinsley – No, I don’t think so. I read that years ago and thought it didn’t sound right. So I looked it up -

    From Library Journal
    As the only virgin left in the Highland village of Ballybliss, Gwendolyn Wilder finds herself being sent off as a sacrificial offering to the legendary Dragon of Weyrcraig and ends up winning his heart instead in this light, creative version of the classic Beauty and the Beast fairy tale. An outspoken, irreverent, and somewhat overweight heroine; a wounded, noble hero; and an ample supply of lively, whimsical humor and excellent writing make Medeiros’s first hardcover romance a debut to remember.

    No ghost, no princess for a day.

  11. 11
    L. Tinsley says:

    For some reason I remeber the village sent off the virgin to the dragon.  The virgin thought the dragon was a ghost and they danced together. The villagers were so impressed that she survived the night that they married her to a prince? I don’t know it’s been so long ago that I read this. I think the dragon killed the prince, because he was jealous…hence the princess for a day?  But I could be losing my mind.  Always a possibilty:)

  12. 12
    Collette says:

    I just finished reading the Bride and the Beast yesterday so I can say for sure that it’s not the book in question.  But it is an awesome book.

  13. 13
    Vicki says:

    Still unrelated but I loved Elswyth Thane, too, when I was a teen. Haunted the library looking for more of her novels. I especially loved the Revolutionary War one with the girl pretending to be her twin.

  14. 14
    hapax says:

    Don’t recognize this one (though I’d like to read it) but a readers advisory librarian might like to know about the awesome fairy tale lists at SurLaLune.  Here’s the link for Cinderella romances.

  15. 15
    Cristiane Young says:

    Sorry I can’t help with the book in question, but I’d like to add my voice to the chorus of love for Elswyth Thane.  Happily, the library where I essentially lived growing up had a large collection of Thane books, including all the Williamsburg books and Tryst, which I absolutely adored.

    “myself26” – sadly, no.  Myself is exactly double that age.

  16. 16
    Rebekah says:

    For some reason I remeber the village sent off the virgin to the dragon.  The virgin thought the dragon was a ghost and they danced together. The villagers were so impressed that she survived the night that they married her to a prince

    No, I actually just finished rereading this one yesterday.  She is sacrificed to the dragon who turns out to be the Laird of the castle.  He holds her captive to keep the secret that the Dragon is not real, and they marry near the end of the novel…mostly so that they can screw because she’s a virgin and wants to keep her “virtue” as to not be like her whorish sisters.

  17. 17
    SusannaG says:

    I also grew up on the Williamsburg novels by Elswyth Thane – Dawn’s Early Light was my first romance.  My mother gave it to me when I was twelve.

  18. 18
    JamiSings says:

    I would just like to say using the key phrases provided, Google is of NO help. (Then again, I should know that, seeing how my repeated searchings for “Women’s Plus size clothing shops in Palm Springs, CA” keeps giving me a list of gay nightclubs – what fat women’s clothing has to do with homosexual men is beyond me.)

    However, since others are talking about ghosts in romance novels I’ll tell you one that actually gave me the willies.

    Heroine moves into haunted house. Hero lives there with her at some point. They can’t seem to get it together. Then one night they suddenly can’t control themselves and have amazing sex – but something is wrong. Turns out the ghosts (I can’t remember if she’s related to the male ghost or if it was the hero) – lovers when they were alive – took over their bodies as a way of getting to have sex for the first time in like 100+ years and also to play matchmaker. 

    Always creeped me out, that scene. Can’t remember the book, but the thought of two people being possessed and forced to have sex with each other – ug!

  19. 19
    L Tinsley says:

    LOL Oh my God! What gay guys and plus size clothing have in common, I have no idea.  Maybe drag queens? I live in the Palm Springs area and trust me there are no good shops for us bigger girls unless you want to look 80. I think the creepy ghost storie was a short story by Lori Foster. Maybe Wildly Winston?

  20. 20
    JamiSings says:

    @L Tinsley – I don’t know either. All I can think of is google thinks all cross dressers (who, obviously, have to wear plus sizes) are gay. But I’ve known a few and they were actually happily married straight men who just had a compulsion to wear women’s clothing. (I think the majority, though not all, had bad relationships with their moms, from what they revealed about their childhoods.)

    Way to stereotype, Google.

    As for looking 80 – eh, I dress “matronly” anyway according to mom. I just want to see what you all have different. I live near the beach so lots of things are naudical/sailorish. Since I get seasick….

    ANYWAY – The name Lori Foster rings a bell – but I do remember it was set in England somewhere. And the male ghost was related to either the heroine or the hero somehow.

  21. 21
    GirlyNerd says:

    Now that we’re completely off topic. Librarian’s theme song should be “Librarian” by My Morning Jacket. It makes me swoon every time I hear it. sigh.

  22. 22
    JamiSings says:

    Sorry about that. I’m a great one for going completely off topic.

    If it helps me any, I really did try very hard to find this book. Cause it sounds like one I’d read.

  23. 23
    Rebyj says:

    Could it be one of Linda Winstead Jones fairy tale books she wrote under a different variation of her name? Sorry, I don’t recall what name she used, but there were several in that series.

  24. 24
    Jean says:

    JamiSings said:

    Heroine moves into haunted house. Hero lives there with her at some point. They can’t seem to get it together. Then one night they suddenly can’t control themselves and have amazing sex – but something is wrong. Turns out the ghosts (I can’t remember if she’s related to the male ghost or if it was the hero) – lovers when they were alive – took over their bodies as a way of getting to have sex for the first time in like 100+ years and also to play matchmaker.

    I belive this is Dee S. Knight’s “Passionate Destiny.” I have to say, I enjoyed it, partly because I live in the area in which it is supposed to take place.

  25. 25
    JamiSings says:

    @Jean – No. I’m pretty sure it actually took place in England. And she might’ve actually known the hero from childhood on. Course I could be getting it mixed up with other books.

    I do remember clearly that there was a painting of the male ghost and he had brown hair in the painting.

    It actually might’ve been a short story. It’s just that one scene that sticks so hard with me because of the creepy factor.

  26. 26
    FD` says:

    @JamiSings

    You know I think I reread this book or one very similar (sadly not the OP’s query) recently.  I’ll back check my borrowing records from the library. It was a BNA, La Nora, or possibly a Delinsky or a Krantz. Someone like that anyway.
    I remember the possessed!sex pretty clearly, partly because it was so much more vivid than the actual H&H’s interactions.  There may possibly have been a villain in the form of the heroine’s agent?  I will admit I had the impression that the ghost!hero dated back to to the American Civil war though. (No, I’m not thinking of Nora Robert’s McCade series – they’re on my keeplist.)
    Surely there can’t be that many books with this as a feature.

  27. 27
    Jasmine says:

    Surely there can’t be that many books with this as a feature.

    LOL As I remember this was a plot device in the True Adventures of Johnny Quest cartoon show!  (OK just kissing not sex but still…)  Pretty sure it’s very common!

    No help on the book unfortunately. Although I’d like to read it!

  28. 28
    Liz in Australia says:

    Hmmm. Having read all these responses I am wondering if it might be an Angie Ray story. She has a few ghosts in her books. Don’t know if that’s it.

  29. 29
    ping says:

    Teachers are asking for grade 3 mystery books for book reports, yet after putting 11,550 books in order and calling the ALA for advice on how to put the Fiction books, I was told there is no specific section for Mystery, all books for that age are under fiction. I even called other elementary school librarians and they said the same.

    I told the teachers to give me the authors, but they don’t have the time, XK0-002 SY0-101 70-272 MB2-633 and I have search the mystery authors through you, and going through pages of pages of that dance, I can only find about 3 for authors that wrote mystery within my school library. I really cannot come up with 15 per se.

    Help, what do I do.

  30. 30
    Lyvvie says:

    JamiSings – I think your creepy ghost possession sexcapade sounds like a Nora Roberts I read not too long ago and I also thought was very creepy.

    I’m also interested in the Dragon ghost virgin story – that sounds interesting.

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