Friends since childhood, Julian Dane, Earl of Kettering and Lady Claudia Whitney, plan never to marry. Though acting bored and restless, Julian is plagued by guilt over the death of his friendthe man Claudia loved.

Julian uses his charms on every available female and when Claudia seems immune, he catches her unawares in a hothouse where they are seen sharing a kiss. After that, they must marry or Claudia will be ruined.

Idealistic, Claudia dreads the fact that she may lose her independence and Julian will forbid her working with the poor and abused. Julians remorse shadows everything and puts a wedge between the newlyweds until his sister is caught in a scandal.

As Julian and Claudia build their relationship and share a passionate union, they start to understand each others physical and psychological needs, empowering them to meet any and all challenges.

The intense emotional power of these richly drawn characters gives RUTHLESS CHARMER elevates the book to new heights. The love story is never overshadowed by the lessons of compromise and understanding or the characters psychological baggage, but readers will see how Ms. London has woven current problems into this historical. The second volume in The Rogues of Regent Street is a treat. SENSUAL (Oct., 350 pp., $5.99)

Reviewed by: 
Kathe Robin