Couples who fight every minute they aren't kissing have become an exasper-ating cliché—which just goes to prove that Linda Francis Lee's greatest strength is in her utterly believable characterizations. She takes the cliché and turns it into something delightful.

Lacey Wright manages a bar for football legend and owner Bobby McIntyre. She's never met the man, and having little use for sports or their heroes, she'd like to keep it that way. Bobby, sidelined by an injury, turns up at the bar. Sparks ensue and slowly Lacey and Bobby learn to trust one another. Gradually, they let down the defenses that old wounds have built.

Through the skillful revelation of both their pasts it becomes obvious that these opposites are more alike than different. This author has a deft hand with characters—and with words. (Apr., 352 pp., $6.99)

Reviewed by: 
Cindy Harrison