A DARK AND BROODING GENTLEMAN
With heavy gothic overtones and a somewhat predictable plot, McPhee’s tale is an enjoyable read. McPhee makes sure to satisfy her fans giving them a hero with much on his conscience and a strong woman to bring him out of the dark.
Phoebe Allardyce has come upon hard times. With her father in debtors’ prison she is working as a companion to Mrs. Hunter. Phoebe accompanies Mrs. Hunter to the family’s ancestral home, Blackloch Hall. Phoebe is surprised at the hostility between Mrs. Hunter and her son Sebastian. Phoebe returns to Glasgow to visit her father and is accosted on the road and is blackmailed into stealing a family heirloom. Sebastian becomes aware that Phoebe is systematically searching his home for something and decides that he needs to find out what she’s up to. The more time they spend together the more Sebastian seems to thaw and the more Phoebe wants to know about him. Their love grows, but Phoebe is determined to protect Sebastian and save her father all on her own. When her plan goes astray and she winds up being kidnapped, it’s up to Sebastian to save her. (HARLEQUIN, Jan.,318 pp., $6.25)