Excerpt from Alice I Have Been by Melanie Benjamin, plus links to reviews, author biography & more

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Alice I Have Been

by Melanie Benjamin

Alice I Have Been
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  • First Published:
    Jan 2010, 368 pages
    Jan 2011, 368 pages

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“Edith?” I could only repeat her name, for it did not register in my brain. Edith? Edith was home, in bed; I had just waltzed around her room, getting ready for this night. “What about Edith?” 

“She’s ill—very, very ill. Dr. Acland has gone, too. Come— we can’t tarry. Prince Leopold, help me!” 

I did not understand what he meant, but somehow Leo was pushing me—gently, yet forcibly—toward William, who was hurrying back across the market square. Then I was in front of the Corn Exchange, being lifted into the carriage—I heard my brother-in-law yell to his driver to hurry, there was no time to waste—and somehow I found the presence of mind to lean out of the carriage window and look, one more time, at Leo as the horses pulled away. I realized, too late, that I was still wrapped in his jacket; it smelled like moonlight, like warm breezes, faded jasmine. My own scent, I realized; it had mixed and lingered with his. I smelled myself upon his coat. 

Leo was standing at the curb, just under a streetlamp; the light shone down upon him, making his hair a golden halo but obscuring his face so I could not see his eyes. He raised his arm in farewell, opened his mouth as if to speak. 

We rounded the street corner before I could hear what he said, but I was sure that it was just one word— Alice.

Excerpted from Alice I Have Been by Melanie Benjamin Copyright © 2010 by Melanie Benjamin. Excerpted by permission of Random House Audio, a division of Random House, Inc. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.

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