Before he went on the Crusade, Nicholas Hendry had been known as a ladys man. Upon his return, he vows to lead a different life. He never expects a woman he has never seen to spit in his face and walk away.
Beatrice Thibault, the innkeepers daughter, blames Nicholas for her sisters death in childbirth. If not for him, she would be alive and happy. Instead, she lies in a grave, her small son in Beatrices care.
Nicholas may be shocked, but he has no free time to wonder about her strange behavior; there are grave problems awaiting him at Henley Hall. Believing Nicholas to be dead, his father had willed their home and lands to their neighbor, Baron Hawse,a man who secretly covets Nicholas mother and her property. Now, Nicholas must find a way to wrest his birthright back.
To add to his problems, he finds himself overwhelmingly attracted to Beatrice. Though she vowed not to fall under Nicholas spell, Beatrice finds it hard to keep her promise and once he discovers that he has a son she cannot deny him his rights as a father. However, as Beatrice and Nicholas come to an understanding and begin to fall in love, they start to get caught up in the Barons vicious plans and schemes.
Ana Seymour paints an interesting portrait of medieval England. Instead of focusing on landed gentry, Ms. Seymour shifts her plot to include the working class and the relationship between a warrior and a commoner. THE ROGUE is an enjoyable addition to the Knights of the Black Rose trilogy. SENSUAL (On-sale Feb., 350 pp., $4.99)