When Lady Phoebe Carlton was 13 years old, she vowed never to marry. Now, five years later, she finds herself about to wed Cato, Marquis of Granville, her sisters widower. She suspects her fathers hand in this marriage, since it is a common practice for a widower to marry his sister-in-law to keep all monies in the families. This suits Phoebes parsimonious father just fine.

Phoebe has one disturbing thought. Though she does not want to marry, she discovers that she lusts after Cato. After a very disappointing wedding night, she ponders her problem.

Nothing like her deceased sister, who was regal and sure of herself, Phoebe is slightly plump, a tad untidy and a writer of poetry and plays. With the help of her friend, Portia, she tries to seduce Cato. When Cato looks at the new Phoebe he discovers a voluptuous woman garbed in a midnight blue gown and he doesnt appreciate other men ogling what is his.

Her seduction works when she takes the upper hand and Cato is surprised and pleased to find a passionate and willing bed partner. Catos duties interfere, for he is involved in the civil war between the king and Parliament. When Cato goes on a secret mission, he refuses to take Phoebe with him. But when she discovers a plot to kill Cato, she follows himdamn the consequences.

The ACCIDENTAL BRIDE is the second in The Bride Trilogy and Ms. Feather does not disappoint. With humor, history and characters you fall in love with, this is a gem of a book. Most definitely a keeper! SENSUAL (Aug., 400 pp., $6.50)

Reviewed by: 
Joan Hammond