Victorian London's gritty underworld and glittering ballrooms collide intriguingly in this action-packed tale. When black sheep Maggie Graham's police officer husband dies, she's no longer able to work on police cases in London's East End. Instead, her family, in need of money, arranges a second marriage to the kind but elderly Lord Charles.

Charles' nephew, Lord Jamie, is against the marriage, believing Maggie is a fortune hunter. Still, he cannot escape his overwhelming attraction to the feisty beauty and begins following Maggie from mesmerists' seances to secret theaters and the underworld haunts of Victorian London.

Charles dies shortly after their marriage, and it is whispered that Maggie had something to do with his death. If that isn't enough, she is now guardian to Charles' defiant daughter, Arianna, and she and Jamie have become embroiled in the hunt for Jack the Ripper.

Drake weaves an intricate plot into a delicious romance, which makes for captivating, adventurous and wonderfully wicked reading. SENSUAL (Jan., 448 pp., $6.99)

Reviewed by: 
Kathe Robin