"What would you do with a million pounds?" That's what Madeline Duncan has dreamed of all her life and when she inherits a fortune she decides to put it to good use and begin helping mankind by ridding the world of women's corsets.

When the trustees refuse to allow Madeline to open a factory and recruit workers in a utopian community, she takes them to court and the wily old judge appoints Cole Mandeville as her "overseer."

Long a cynic, Cole is none too pleased to become "Mad Madeline's nanny" until he witnesses the passionate do-gooder in action. Cole realizes that someone has to guard Madeline's interest. Before he knows it, Cole has been dragged into Madeline's enterprise, The Ideal Clothing Company, but not before she has fallen into his arms.

Madeline confronts problems head on, but when she is unjustly criticized in the newspapers, besieged by domineering aristocrats (including Sir William Morris) and then her workers revolt and the factory blows up, things become almost too much for her. Cole becomes her guardian angel, though he seems unsuited to the role.

Readers will delight in this wondrous romance filled with warmth, love, compassion and the purity of the spirit. Betina Krahn truly makes us believe in the goodness within and the ability we each have to enrich the world, just as she enriches our lives with her magnificent stories. SENSUAL (May, 400 pp., $5.99)

Reviewed by: 
Kathe Robin