Rising star Alana Clayton entertains us with a clever tale of a beautiful heiress trying to protect her younger sister from a greedy fortune hunter.

Miss Emma Randolph had no other choice. All previous attempts to scare off her avaricious cousin had failed, and now he was courting her innocent sibling. Worse yet, she cant help but believe that the scoundrel has been behind the attempts on her life. But if she married, he might realize that her sister would no longer be her heir if she died.

And so she impulsively marries a handsome stranger, only to be abandoned right after the ceremony. And when she tracks her erstwhile husband back to his familys estate, she discovers the real Richard Tremayne is the Earl of Melbourne, a man she has never met.

Just who did she marry? How can she convince her suspicious host of the truth of her story? And what can she do to protect herself when her evil cousin shows up at the earls estate?

Although the hero jumps to conclusions far too quickly, Regency fans will relish the lively interplay and strong plotting of this engaging period piece. (Nov., 224 pp., $4.50)

Reviewed by: 
Melinda Helfer