Grief over his fiancis death drives Dr. Colin Ryan into the wilderness and by chance he signs up as a physician for the newly formed Royal Canadian Mounted Police. With a new purpose in life, Colin takes an assignment to go undercover and track down whiskey trader George Hayes.

Colin easily becomes part of Hayes gang. But it is the traders rough and tumble daughter, Maggie, who intrigues Colin. For some strange reason, this tomboy reawakens long-buried desires and dreams of love and marriage. But he cant allow tender feelings to destroy his mission.

Colins information leads the Mounties to capture Hayes crew and Maggie. Ill with typhoid, Maggie is taken to Colin for treatment. Nursing her through the dreaded disease affords Colin time to realize he has fallen in love.

THE FIRST TIME is a Cinderella story with a wilderness twist. Ms. Fox brings a delightful heroine to life and allows Maggie to emerge from a cocoon to become a lovely lady and win her Prince Charmings heart. The fascinating and innovative back drop of the Canadian west and historical details of the era add authenticity to a warmhearted and tender romance. Readers will be eager to see the next books in what promises to be a delightful trilogy. SWEET (Dec., 300 pp., $4.99)

Reviewed by: 
Kathe Robin