Nicholas Drake has waited years to see Harry Dillard destroyed. Now that the man who ruined his life is gone, the only means to complete his revenge is to build a skyscraper on his late enemy's property. But one obstacle stands in his way: Eliot Sinclair, owner of the only house left to buy before he can build his skyscraper.

Eliot (Ellie) Sinclair cannot sell her home, no matter the price. If she does, the secret of her ignoble birth and clandestine work will be revealed and the people she has taken into her home, those lost souls she has saved, will be homeless. Ellie's honor demands she reject Nicholas' offer. But can she reject the man?

Nicholas is charming and dashing, handsome and arrogant, and Ellie sees behind his facade to the gentle man who cares for his young niece and is kind to her friend Jim. It is this man with whom she falls in love.

Nicholas feels something crack inside whenever he sees Ellie, as if his heart begins to melt. Yet the vagaries of fate drive them apart and it isn't until time has passed and he returns to New York to find Ellie married that Nicholas realizes the extent of his mistake.

Still fate has one more trick to play and this time, perhaps both Ellie and Nicholas will be able to withstand the ugly truth about her heritage and allow love to heal their hearts.

The emotional depth and exceptional storytelling in EMERALD RAIN lifts Linda Francis Lee into the ranks of the most eloquent writers of the genre. Like Megan Chance's The Portrait, Ms. Lee's story explores turn-of-the-century New York and New Yorkers with a keen, yet compassionate eye. This one's a winner! SENSUAL (Dec., 389 pp., $5.99)

Reviewed by: 
Kathe Robin