When decadent, Irish aristocrat James Killoran discovers Emma Langolet standing over the body of her dead uncle, he acts the gallant and assumes the blame, knowing that as a nobleman he will be exempt from punishment.

Never expecting to cross Emma's path again, James continues on to London where he hopes to lead his nephew into a life of debauchery. However, young Nicholas has plans of his own, like falling head over heels in love with James' "friend" Lady Barbara.

Meanwhile, Emma finds herself in trouble and once again it is James to the rescue. No matter how he tries it seems that James cannot help but be Emma's Knight in Shining Armor and James believes Emma too delectable to let go.

As her "guardian angel," James plots to seduce the innocent, not knowing that others are planning to destroy both of them. As their passion grows so does the danger in this lively, sophisticated romance from an ingenious and inventive writer of the genre.

Anne Stuart outdoes herself with her stylish prose and brilliant plotting. This is a wonderful story people with unforgettable characters -the hallmark of a masterful storyteller. SENSUAL (Dec., 400 pp., $5.50)

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