Like her grandmother before her, Matilda Candy doesnt mind being called a witch. She is happy and content to live a simple life following the old ways, and making herbal remedies and potions for the folks around Tanglewood. She can also make just about any kind of plant grow, and can bake the best sweetsjust ask Hanson and Gretchen, the twins who live through the woods.

Destitute as a young boy, Declan Harper was always looked down upon and scorned as white trash. Now he has returned, fortune in hand, to seek his revenge. Declan purchases the largest plantation in the area and plans to wed the daughter of the man who scorned his family many years before.

Remembering the witch who lived in the woods and the memorable times he spent with the old woman, he decides to seek her advice on a potion to make the lovely Vanessa fall in love with him.

Matilda Candy is not as he remembered and Declan soon finds himself enamored with the lovely witch. Assuming his infatuation is due to the sampling of her potions, he tries to put her out of his mind, still determined to wed Vanessa.

Matildas potions have no effect on Vanessa, however, and as Declan falls deeper and deeper under Matildas spell he devises another planone that entails securing Vanessa as his wife and Matilda as his mistress.

What Declan doesnt plan on, however, is the overwhelming power of true love, and how it often times ensnares one within its honeyed web when least expected.

INTO THE WOODS is a delightfully enchanting tale, shimmering with the magic of a true storyteller. Brimming with laughter and lovable characters, Linda Jones fanciful spin on the classic fairy tale Hansel and Gretel is sure to warm your heart. Youll be cheering Matilda on as she wins her hearts desire with the spell of true love. SENSUAL (Feb., 320 pp., $5.99)

Reviewed by: 
Beth MacGregor