Belle Barclay, of the noted Williamsburg patriot family, cant remember a time when she hasnt loved her second cousin, the half-Seneca brave, Falcon. When he returns home for a respite from the Colonial rebellion against English rule, he finds Belle alone in her fathers study. Their passionate encounter is well on its way to compromising Belle when she realizes that Falcon is drunk. She believes that he hasnt approached her out of love.

The next day, when Falcon attempts to apologize in front of their family, they demand he propose to Belle. She refuses, not wanting to force herself on a man who apparently doesnt love her. Falcon rides back off to war.

Belle and her sister Dominique follow Falcon and offer their services as nurses to wounded militia in Carolina. The girls are captured by the British.

Dominique aides the wounded Loyalist Sean OKeefe, who had romanced and then betrayed her before the fighting began. She wants to save the man she loves, and this delays their rescue. Sean demands the women take him to their home, where his loyalty to the British makes him betray Dominiques love yet again.

Belles pursuit of Falcon has proved to be worth the risk, but Dominique is destroyed. Her brother urges his friend, the French volunteer Etienne, to rescue her from her grief.

Phoebe Conn weaves family life, the hardship of travel in Colonial times and high passion through her history of one of Americas only wars on home ground. SEXY (Jan., 395 pp., $5.99)

Reviewed by: 
Gerry Benninger