It weas never Miss Rachel Manvers' intention to break into Lord Nicholas Stanton's home to retrieve a fraudulent Roman head, which she sculpted, and replace it with the real one. She can blame her uncle for putting her in this dangerous predicament.
Lord Stanton is somewhat of an authority on ancient Roman artifacts. Attending many of the city of Bath's social engagements, Rachel and Nicholas soon find themselves drawn to each other. When Nicholas discovers that Rachel is a portrait artist, he suggests that she paint his mother. The prestige of a commission of this magnitude would surely be a boon to her livelihood.
Rachel occupies herself with her painting, but it's not long before her uncle involves her in a dangerous liaison with dire consequences.
She is saved by Nicholas, but they get caught in a compromising situation. The only solution is marriage. Unbeknownst to Rachel, Nicholas is involved with the agents investigating a dangerous band of thieves who steal Roman artifacts.
When Rachel's uncle is shot, his dying words leave her with no understanding of his prophetic warnings. Her decision not to tell Nicholas puts her through a horror that Nicholas will not soon forget.
Ms. Overfield pens a very pleasurable romance filled with the ambiance of the period. One almost wishes one could take in the waters at Bath and discover the delight of gazing upon the Roman art. SENSUAL (Mar., 304 pp., $5.99)