Ms. Joyce gracefully moves from historical romance to contemporary fiction and now into historical romantic suspense. A consummate storyteller, she brings readers a well-crafted and highly appealing mystery starring a remarkable duo, socialite Francesca Cahill and police commissioner Rick Bragg. Francesca isnt an ordinary New York socialite; shes attending Barnard College without her mothers knowledge and volunteering to help those in need. She certainly will not sit back while the police investigate her neighbors sons kidnapping, especially since she found the ransom note.

Newly appointed police commissioner Rick Bragg doesnt quite know what to do with the interfering and enchanting Francesca. Hes determined to be just, fair and incorruptible; keeping out of the high societys machinations when hes pulled into the case and finds himself face-to- face with well-meaning, curious Francesca. Forced to work together in their investigations, the sexual tension between them begins to rise as the clues keep leading them on a perilous trail.

B. D. Joyce carefully crafted a wonderful mystery with twists and turns and red herrings galore, then added two marvelous, witty protagonists who will appeal to romance readers: Francesca, the innocent, naive, intelligent activist, and Rick, the bold, brilliant, all-Bragg hero. Add to this a charming cast of secondary characters and a meticulously researched picture of society life in the early 1900s. I can hardly wait to see what Francesca and Rick will be up to next. (Jan., 340 pp., $6.50)

Reviewed by: 
Kathe Robin