These ladies all seem to be running away from life instead of seizing the day. The collection may help you pass an afternoon at the beach enjoyably enough, but none of the stories really ignite.
In “June Lace” by Lamb, June McKenna is a wedding dress designer who lives on the Oregon coast. When she nearly drowns, famed songwriter Reece O’Brien saves her, and she may have found someone who can restore her faith in men. In Chamberlin’s “Second Chance Sweethearts,” Thea Foss is on the run from her abusive ex-husband. She moves from Boston to Maine, but her ex continues to stalk her and sending threatening emails. Hugh, her high school sweetheart, and her landlady, Alice, help thwart him and help her come to terms with her past. “Carolina Summer” by Noonan gives us New York real estate agent Jane Doyle. She’s on the run because she and her friend, Tia, witnessed a murder. Her friend is also murdered, and Jane is next. She decides to head to Florida but runs into a storm on the Outer Banks of North Carolina. Her hero shows up in the form of Sheriff Cooper Locklear, who rescues her from the storm and, by the way, captures the killer. “The Brass Ring” by Jackson has an amnesiac groom and a bride who’ll do anything to heal him. It was originally released in 1988 as Loveswept #264, written as Susan Crose. (KENSINGTON, Jun., 416 pp., $15.00)