Looking for a quickie without feeling guilty? You'll find satisfaction with these passionate tales from three talented ladies. Each story is about an audacious lady out to seduce the ton's favorite bad boy.

In "The Ultimate Lover" by Adrienne Basso, Dowager Countess Lady Amelia Wheatley must thwart her brother-in-law's greedy attempt to marry her off to a common merchant. She escapes her fate only through scandal and decides upon the ton's legendary lover, Garth Travers, Viscount Langley. Yet while her goal is to be rid of a betrothed, her chosen lover teaches her that she can't rid her heart of her deepest desires.

Miss Alison May, descendant of pirates, takes daring to a new level in "The Pleasures of a Wager" by Colleen Faulkner. Sent to London to attend finishing school, Alison wagers her virginity in defense of her newfound friend, pledging that the girl, who is a bit of an outcast, will be a triumph in society. Just when she's regretting her rash choice, a gallant stranger offers her the perfect solution. Viscount William Bridle, the ton's most eccentric personality, convinces Ally to wed him on the spot. But marriage isn't what she thought, and Ally must resort to her pirate's blood to win what she really wants.

Debbie Raleigh's "One Night with Lucifer" makes sparks fly when Miss Diana Howard, head of the Athena Society, sets out to conquer each of the 10 challenges laid down by the ton's notorious rake, Lord Luceford. The ninth on the list is to seduce the Toast of the Season, and Diana succeeds brilliantly. But when he learns he's been bested he's determined to teach Diana a lesson she'll never forget.

This refreshing trio of titillating tales proves turnabout is fair play as the women pursue the men, and each tale delivers marvelous repartee, sexy situations and fitting endings. All three heroines are caught in a time when women had little freedom, yet each tale reminds us that being feminine doesn't mean being weak, and that with the right bad boy, being a woman is fortunate indeed! SENSUAL (Jun., 352 pp., $5.99)

Reviewed by: 
Anne Black