On her stagecoach journey home to live with and help her hardworking mother, Lacy Calhoun's sheltered convent upbringing doesn't dampen her interest in fellow passenger Lucas Burns. His work as a saloonkeeper does… but only a little.

The shocking discovery that her mother's boarding house is actually a brothel also shakes up Lacy and makes her doubt her plans to live at home. When her mother closes the business, the town's regular inhabitants fear that this reform is only the beginning. Lucas, without much urging, decides to move with his son into the former Satin Slipper and convinces Lacy that returning the establishment to its former state is the best solution.

This is a frothy, fun, traditional read that makes the prohibitionists' message and clash of morals in Western towns a lot lighter and more romantic than it probably was. Sensual (Jul., 297 pp., $5.25)

Reviewed by: 
Gerry Benninger