At her father's deathbed, Hasting of Trent, heiress of Oxborough, is told she must wed Severin of Langthorne to save her home and for her protection. Severin returned from the Crusades to find that he has inherited the title and the responsibility of Baron of Louges. But it's an empty title unless he weds an heiress; he gladly agrees to wed Hasting.

Severin believes a wife should be submissive and obedient. Hasting is too independent-minded to ever surrender to a man and, as a skilled healer, she has the people's respect.

Their fierce battle of wills begins on their wedding night and continues until Lady Marjorie, Severin's ex-mistress, arrives. Hasting decides to fight for Severin's love. Her discovery of the deed to Rosehaven, an estate she never knew existed, compels Hasting to follow her heart and visit the mysterious place. There she and Severin will uncover a wondrous secret and the magic of love.

Mixing sensuality, humor and history in her delightful style, Catherine Coulter delivers a romance that will make fans rejoice. Fans know to expect a romance brimming with excitement, a high degree of sensuality, rough love play and a cast of memorable characters. This time she has added the most wonderful animals for comic relief. Put all this together and you have a bestseller. SPICY (Oct., 372 pp., $21.95)

Reviewed by: 
Kathe Robin