by Sandy HusebyApril, 2001
Quick-witted romantic storytelling
Whether writing as Jayne Anne Krentz in contemporary suspense or under her pseudonym Amanda Quick in historic Regency settings, this best-selling author is the unsurpassed master of male-female gamesmanship. With her trademark suspense and colorful wit, Quick's writing is as sharp and glib as her heroine's tongue in Slightly Shady, the first book in a new Regency series featuring Lavinia Lake and Tobias March. Quick's creative powers are in full force as Lavinia and Tobias search for conspiring spies and a serial killer of light-skirted women. Lavinia and Tobias may have teamed up to expose the spies and catch the killer, but they are at odds about how to accomplish their goals. Although they must join forces, neither is comfortable trusting the other. Lavinia has a somewhat shady background, but Tobias must rely on her to help track down the Lord who has betrayed his country. There's nothing slight about this rippin' great tale. Quick weaves a frenzied pace with twists and turns that lead to shocking, and passionate, surprises.
At the farthest reaches of England lies the fantasy realm of the aristocratic St. Legers clan. In Susan Carroll's beguiling new tale, Midnight Bride, destiny brought orphan Kate Fitzleger to their realm, where she immediately fell in love with Valentine, the healer. But when the Bride Finder says there can be no marriage between them, a lifetime of love may not be enough to overcome their dark fates. According to history, should Valentine St. Leger defy his destiny and wed, his unfortunate bride would be doomed to an early death. But Kate Fitzleger is not about to let a foolish superstition ruin her chance for happiness, so she arranges a night of magic in the tower of Prospero. Susan Carroll writes with lush, mystical magic and gritty, determined strength worthy of her heroine's struggle for happiness with the man she loves.
Cross the Atlantic and half a continent to the Western world of Springwater, Montana, to reunite with the McCaffrey family as a new generation confronts dangers to life and heart in Linda Lael Miller's hardcover debut, Springwater Wedding. Like Maggie McCaffrey's salmon mousse pastries, Springwater Wedding is the perfect recipe for love. An uptown, sophisticated lady returns home to revitalize Springwater Station as a B&andB and is soon enveloped by her oh-so-yummy cowboy, J.T. Wainwright. They parted a decade before, exchanging bitter words at the wedding altar. Now the harsh lessons he learned as a New York City cop are coming in handy for rounding up rustlers, but they leave Maggie wondering whether he can ever forget his past. Miller writes with a warm and loving heart, telling a story of lovers reunited amid family and friends and finding their own unique ways to love.
SANDY'S SHORT TAKES
Dorothy Garlock consistently puts the heart in heartland romances, and her first hardcover, The Edge of Town, is no exception. Country girl Julie Jones bears the responsibility of taking care of her siblings, but she yearns to be carefree in the dawning Jazz Age. When Evan Johnson's courting of her is clouded by a murder charge, harsh realities of small town life and small town judgments intrude. Garlock writes with an authenticity and warmth as real as the sunlight on the wheat fields surrounding Fertile, Missouri.
The hours of darkness and mystery bring out the secret side of Lady Katherine in Christina Kingston's Regency novel, The Night the Stars Fell. Nature's fireworks explode as Lady Katherine confronts the one man who could make her heart whole or destroy everything she loves.