TOO SINFUL TO DENY
Ridley upholds the promise of her first novel as she again blends gothic elements and a thriller plot with a steamy romance. Her characters are highly sensual and well defined, the setting is perfectly gloomy and a touch of the paranormal will send a chill down your spine.
Susan Stanton, a young socialite, is exiled from London to the tiny village of Bournemouth for her rebellious behavior. As a result of her near-death experience falling through the ice on the Thames, she now has the ability to converse with ghosts. When his brother Timothy is late returning from a smuggling trip, Evan Bothwick, a reputed rogue, is worried. When Timothy’s body is found, Evan swears to avenge his murder. He searches for anyone who can lead him to the slayer. Susan’s interaction with several residents and encounters with ghosts, including Timothy’s spirit, provide many pieces of a seemingly unrelated puzzle. Her bond with Evan grows stronger allowing them to find the killer as well as discover other crimes committed against the Crown. But love’s power brings them peace. (ZEBRA., Apr., 352 pp., $6.99)