Mary Margaret Hampton left South Carolina for the forests of Oregon to marry Walt Peabody, a man she never knew. Of course, she never expected to be a widow before she was a bride.

When Meggy arrives at Devil's Camp Number 2, it is during Peabody's funeral. Meggy cannot grieve for a man she never met, but she will not go back either. She plans on living in the cabin she inherits from him.

The war left Colonel Tom Randall with too many bad memories and no love for the south or for a southern belle like Meggy. Yet he finds it nearly impossible to get rid of the stubborn woman or to leave her unprotected in a camp full of single men. As Meggy begins to find a place for herself in the camp, helping the Chinese cook and baking her pies, Tom develops a reluctant respect for her. Meggy begins to see him not as the enemy but as her friend.

From this tentative beginning, love grows, but the wilds of Oregon are a dangerous place, and love must find a way to overcome more than one obstacle.

This sweet charmer of an Americana romance has just the right amount of humor, poignancy and a cast of quirky characters to provide a quick evening's entertainment. It will leave a nice glow as the last page is turned. SENSUAL (Feb., 300 pp., $5.50)

Reviewed by: 
Kathe Robin