Collier Pembroke is the second son of a viscount whos bargained with his older brother to inherit the estate. When the brother changes his mind, Collier is banished to America with a sizeable remittance so he wont interfere.

Laurel Garrison has recently homesteaded a claim in the mountains and needs to prove on it, i.e., build a livable home and show she has a plan for making a living on the land. The bank wont loan a woman money and her taciturn father flatly refuses to allow her to winter on the property alone.

This unlikely pair work out a marriage of convenience so that Collier can show his family hes earning his living by investing, and Laurel can become full owner of her homestead. But before long, their business-only arrangement is threatened by passion.

The resolution of the novel, where a trip to Denver to meet Colliers snobbish family proves disastrous and Laurel returns to Wyoming alone and pregnant, seems a bit too long, but the story fully entertains and concludes just as it should. SPICY (Nov., 300 pp., $4.99)

Reviewed by: 
Gerry Benninger