With her fathers death, Isabel is a very wealthy heiress and a prime target for any man able to marry her. Following her fathers orders, she heads for sanctuary at the monastery to await her betrothed.

Richard is studying to be a monk, trying to wipe out his desire for his brothers betrothed, Isabel. Shortly after her arrival, news comes of his brothers death. For Isabels safety, Richard must marry her in his brothers stead.

Isabel has long loved Richard and now that they are married each must deal with the guilt of having what they secretly desired at the expense of anothers death.

Though the characters are well developed and the background accurately drawn, the very slow pacing, and the way the conflict is drawn out makes it difficult to say focused on the growth of both the characters and their relationship. THE MARRIAGE BED is a far different book from Ms. Dains other quick-paced and lively reads, but should appeal to those who love medieval times and tortured heroes. SENSUAL (Nov., 350 pp., $5.99)

Reviewed by: 
Jill Brager