The widowed Nicholas Stanhope, Marquess of Englemere, needs an heir and must choose another wife. He expects all the suitable women of the ton to be as mercenary and untrustworthy as his first wife, and so selects the beautiful, very headstrong, very spoiled Clarissa.

He is soon intrigued by Clarissas calm, charming and intelligent friend Sarah Wellingford when Sarah smooths over his latest quarrel with Clarissa over her flirtations and convinces him not to keep the engagement ring thrown at his head.

Because of her fathers gambling losses, Sarah desperately needs a husband to save her family home and provide dowries for her sisters, and it appears shell be forced to accept Sir James Findlay, who frightens her.

Nicholas decides to save Sarah from the villainous Findlay, first by finding her another suitor, later by marrying her himself, but Sir James isnt so easily dismissed.

The setting and dialogue of Julia Justisss novel of manners are top of the type and her inclusion of the dark side of Londons marriage mart enhance this scintillating, thoroughly engaging, love story. SENSUAL (June, 286 pp,, $4.99)

Reviewed by: 
Gerry Benninger