As the old maid schoolmarm in the town of Mineral Springs, Janice Harrison comes to the aid of a drifter arrested for arson. Her world is turned upside down when the tall bearded man says he is Peter Aloysius Mulloney. Gone is the arrogant financier she remembers; in his place stands this hard-bitten proud man with a dream to fulfill.

Peter is everything Janice despises, for he and his wealthy family were responsible for the poverty she endured years ago in Ohio. Yet, with Janice's means of making a living in jeopardy, a mischievous muse pushes the two into matrimony and these stubborn lovers clash head on.

When Janice's hidden secrets are threatened with exposure, will Peter swallow his pride and accept the help from the family he has forsaken?

The last in the Paper Trilogy, Ms. Rice uses her delicious, subtle sense of humor to reunite us with her zany cast of characters, complete with a malodorous elephant. A definite keeper. SENSUAL (Mar., 368 pp., $5.99)

Reviewed by: 
Joan Hammond