Victoria Pruit struggles to work her Oregon Territory homestead while taking care of her young son and her invalid husband, who was shot in the head by a Confederate bullet. Her hatred of "Johnny Reb" knows no bounds, so when a stranger dressed in Rebel gray walks up to her home, she takes down her rifle.

Stephen Beaumont has dreamed of coming home, but he never expects to find a Yankee woman on his family's doorstep. The only answer to both their problems is for Victoria to hire Stephen to help work the farm.

The healing begins as Victoria's son, David, starts to idolize Stephen. She discovers how much kinder Stephen is than her cold, verbally abusive husband, and the two find it increasingly difficult to deny their mutual attraction. But when her husband awakens from a coma, guilt washes over her. Only through a tragedy and a miracle can love triumph.

DEAREST ENEMY is a rugged, realistic, yet very tender romance that captures the essence of the Americana love story. Stephanie Bartlett brings us into this stunning story with a master's touch. SENSUAL (Nov., 350 pp., $4.99)

Reviewed by: 
Kathe Robin