Bored with her life as an Albany hairdresser, Crissy Fitzgerald and her friend, Jenny, decide to take the advice of Crissy's client and book a month-long cruise from Athens to Brazil. The exotic change in locale brings out Crissy's deepest desires for adventure, but those yearnings come at a high price in Judith Gould's Dreamboat. Freed from the constraints of ordinary life, Crissy meets three people who play pivotal roles as the boat heads westward. Wealthy shipping heir Mark Vilos seems larger-than-life. Dr. Luca Santo captivates Crissy, but the course of their romance is as turbulent as the undercurrents that swirl around the vessel. Romance novelist Monika Graf adds to the turmoil, plotting conflicts for her fellow passengers that are as emotionally wrenching as those in her fiction, and Crissy is faced with losing Jenny. But it is the dangers Mark and Luca present that provide for the dishiest reading. Mark's obsessions jeopardize Crissy's life, while loving Luca means risking her heart. Gould crafts sophisticated suspense steeped in sizzling passions and heady dangers . . . like Steel on steroids.

Sandy Huseby writes from Fargo, North Dakota, and lakeside in Minnesota.

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