Part of the premise for ‘My Dearest Friend’ came from a dream. I have very vivid dreams and after watching a programme about the Peninsular War, I dreamt that a girl, desperate to rescue her seriously wounded brother from Portugal, approached a duke to help her to bring him home. I started writing the book at, what is now, part way through the first chapter and then put it aside.
I didn’t take it up again for quite a while but when I had to finish working through ill health, I resurrected it from my files. Reading through what I had written, I was much struck by Robert’s grief and decided that he deserved a happier life. However, as a man of intense emotions, who loved deeply and protected fiercely, there were many obstacles for him to clear to achieve true contentment. In Jane he found his perfect companion but the treachery of another conspired against them.
It is an emotionally charged book and at times there appears no hope for reconciliation when the couple are driven apart. How much can a heart endure before it’s irreparably broken?