Here’s a cover so unintentionally icky that romance is the last thing on your mind.
I feel a little dirty just looking at this one. Especially when I consider that someone, somewhere thought this image of a little girl hugging her ostensible father would be just adorable.
Instead, she looks… strangely seductive. Sorta reminds me of what Graham Greene wrote about Shirley Temple.
If you can bear to look closer, check out the upper right hand corner. I’ll go ahead and disabuse you of the notion that the lurking blonde with murder in her eyes is the titular Celia — she’s not. Since this is a Harlequin, that’s our female protagonist. And yet? Relegated to the shadows by the little sexbot.
Just to round out the crazy, here’s the synopsis for this gem, courtesy of FictionDB:
Could she compete with a memory?
After her fiance’s death, Rachel had gone to Scotland to try to pick up the threads of her life.
Once there, however, her life became tangled with the lives of two others—an elfin-faced child who refused to speak after the tragic loss of her mother; and the ill-fated husband who must have truly adored his wife.
As governess, Rachel thought she could help Melanie. But there was nothing she could do for Richard Duncan, except fall in love with him!
Elfin-faced? That just adds insult to injury…