Newly single Caro Cartwright has decided that when it comes to life (and men), ordinary is good. Until her best friend, Princess Lotty, begs her to stage a diversion by masquerading as Prince Philippe of Montluce's latest squeeze....
Playboy Philippe thinks their attempt is doomed. How can he pretend to be in love with someone like Caro, who's so...unglamorous? Then Caro starts winning hearts left, right and center--including his. Can Philippe convince Caro not to settle for normal--but for an extraordinary life as princess of Montluce?
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May 31, 2011
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Excerpt from Ordinary Girl in a Tiara by Jessica Hart
Subject: Internet dating
What a shame about the deli folding. I know you loved that job. You must be really fed up, but your email about the personality test on that internet dating site really made me laugh--good to know you haven't lost your sense of humour in spite of everything that skunk George did to you! All I can say is that compared to Grandmere's matchmaking schemes, internet dating sounds the way to go. Perhaps we should swap lives??!
Subject: Swapping places
What a brilliant idea, Lotty! My life is a giddy whirl at the moment, what with temping at a local insurance company and trying to write profile for new dating site (personality test results too depressing on other one) but if you'd like to try it, you're more than welcome! Of course, living your life would be tough for me--living in a palace, having (admittedly terrifying) grandmother introducing me to suitable princes and so on--but for you, Lotty, anything! Just let me know where and when and I'll have a stab at being a princess for a change...ooh, that's just given me an idea for my new profile. Who says fantasy isn't good for you??? Yours unregally
PRINCESS SEEKS FROG: Curvaceous, fun-loving brunette, 28, looking for that special guy for good times out and in.
'What do you think?' Caro read out her opening line to Stella, who was lying on the sofa and flicking through a copy of Glitz.
Stella looked up from the magazine, her expression dubious. 'It doesn't make sense. Princess seeks frog? What's that supposed to mean?'
'It means I'm looking for an ordinary guy, not a Prince Charming in disguise. I thought it was obvious,' said Caro, disappointed.
'No ordinary guy would ever work that out, I can tell you that much,' said Stella. She went back to flicking. 'You don't want to be cryptic or clever. Men hate that.'
'It's all so difficult.' Caro deleted the offending words on the screen, and chewed her bottom lip. 'What about the curvaceous bit? I'm worried it might make me sound fat, but there's not much point in meeting someone who's looking for a slender goddess, is there? He'd just run away screaming the moment he laid eyes on me. Besides, I want to be honest.'
'If you're going to be honest, you'd better take out "fun-loving",' Stella offered. 'It makes it sound as if you're up for anything.'
'That's the whole point. I'm changing. Being sensible didn't get me anywhere with George, so I'm going to be a good time girl from now on.'
She would be like Melanie, all giggles and low cut tops and flirty looks. Melanie, who had sashayed into George's office and knocked Caro's steady, sensible fianc� off his feet.
'I can't say what I'm really like or no one will want to go out with me,' she added glumly.
'Rubbish,' said Stella. 'Say you're kind and generous and a brilliant cook--that would be honest.'
'Guys don't want kind, even if they say they do,' Caro said bitterly, remembering George. 'They want sexy and fun-loving.'
'Hmm, well, if you want to be sexy, you'd better do something about your clothes,' said Stella, lowering Glitz so that she could inspect her friend's outfit with a critical eye. 'I know you're into the vintage look, but a crochet top?'
'It's an original from the Seventies.'
'And it was vile then, too.'
Caro made a face at her. With the top she was wearing a tartan miniskirt from the nineteen-sixties and bright red pumps. She was the first to admit that she couldn't always carry off the vintage look...