Injured during a train robbery, Regina Shelton awakens with no memory of who she is--and in the arms of the most handsome man she has ever seen. The dangerous stranger calls her "Elizabeth," and his touch sets her blood racing--impelling her toward a romantic destiny not rightfully her own.
Slade Delanza has finally found the missing heiress who came west to wed his brother James. But now James is dead--and the rugged loner is expected to marry wealthv "Elizabeth Sinclair" himself, in order to rescue his family's California ranch from ruin. Though he aches to possess his innocent young bride, Slade's honor demands that he deny his own desires. And he vows to resist temptation, never dreaming of the stunning secrets that could seal their love--or tear them apart forever.
This bodice-ripper, set in turn-of-the-century America, has all the subtlety of a cartoon. Regina Shelton, whose daddy is an English earl, is traveling by train through central California on an extended holiday from which she'll return home to marry a man of her father's choice. Masked bandits intrude; one clearly has his eye on more than Regina's pearls. What's a virginal aristocrat to do? She hurls herself from the speeding train, winding up in the dust with a case of amnesia, a new identity and powerful sexual longings for her rescuer, one Slade Delanza, heir apparent to a financially troubled rancho. Slade is boorish and temperamental, but his body stirs the delicate Regina. ``He was not really a big man, but every inch of him was sculpted muscle,'' rhapsodizes author Joyce ( Violet Fire ) just before Slade removes Regina's rain-drenched corset. Slade's treatment of Regina is atrocious, but the poor guy is troubled by memories of his older half-brother, a mother who abandoned him and a scheming father whose approval he desperately seeks. At novel's end, Regina not only stands by her man, but also gives him her inheritance. Go figure. (Apr.)
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March 31, 1993
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