Goodman's latest Regency romance
is charming, with a leisurely pace
and all the proper mannerisms, but
it's not her usual best. The romance
is weak, with a misplaced "risque" scene that will jar many readers,
and the ending leaves too many
unanswered questions.

Emmalyn Hathaway is a poor relation with no prospects, dowry or family, aside from a benevolent uncle and his daughter. Yet someone wants her dead. After barely escaping a kidnapping, she turns to a stranger with a reputation for protecting the innocent.

Restell Gardner agrees to protect her and track down her would-be abductors. Everything points to a case of mistaken identity, until the second attempt on Emma's life. Restell makes a hasty proposal as he slowly starts to unravel the mystery surrounding her abduction -- one full of scandal, madness and betrayal. (Zebra, Sep., 384 pp., $6.99)
Reviewed by: 
Maria Ferrer