How much does scandal matter in a culture where lives are blown away on a whisper? Not much to Althea Wintergreen, unmarried and raising a child. Plenty to Lucius Keene, Duke of Traherne, who has left London to avoid his mother, the scandalous duchess who ran off with an actor.

The Duke needs an heir, but Lucius doesnt believe in marriage. His world is upended by unconventional Althea. Its clear she is entirely different, especially in her unexpected acceptance of her scandalous situation. Its scandal that keeps the lovers apart, but with a splendid twist.

With engaging effect, Sara Blayne plays the high formality of her setting and her Jane Austen-like prose off the non-stop action for unique and pleasurable Regency reading. Sensual (Oct., 349 pp., $5.99)

Reviewed by: 
Gerry Benninger