Newly-widowed Kathryn Siddons barely has time to mourn her husband when she must decide whether or not to take a position as companion to delicate Lady Sarah Campbell. Little does she know that the dark stranger she met on the road, the man who nearly made her forget her loss, is Sarah's future husband, Hugh MacDonald.

Hugh must marry Sarah for the sake of his clan. His bride is beautiful, blonde and has a body to tempt a saint. He simply cannot lust after a woman that he met on the road.

In truth, Kathryn is pleased to be leaving the village in which she has always felt like an outsider. She hopes to find peace for herself and her son in in their new home of Nenverness (even though times are harsh and turmoil is brewing throughout Scotland as Bonnie Prince Charlie strives to raise an army). For his part, Hugh must keep his clan safe, for legend tells that Nenverness will fall if love and peace are lost.

Neither Hugh nor Kathryn, however, can stop themselves from falling in love. And though he eventually does marry Sarah, Kathryn's love for him and his for her nearly override their reason.

When a miscarriage pushes Sarah to the brink of insanity, Hugh and Kathryn can no longer hold back their feelings. Their passions explode, even as their lives and all of Scotland are thrown into chaos and the future of Nenverness is threatened.

Karen Ranney's powerful prose and strong storyline, propelled by unforgettable characters, turn HEAVEN FORBIDS into an out-of-the-ordinary read. Perhaps not for everyone-but for those who crave the different, the powerful and the imaginative-this is one book that will become a treasure. SENSUAL (Mar., 350 pp.,$5.99)

Reviewed by: 
Kathe Robin