Avon, May 2003, 5.99, 384 pp.
In 1817 following the death of her father a duke, Diana Westover joins her two aunts in Bath. Her goal is to meet men, not to marry, but to use them as models in a novel she plans to write. At the Pump Room, Diana sees the perfect person to serve as her book's villain Count Korlovsky although her Aunt Calliope detests her choice in “suitors” Lord Adderley, Edmond Terrington. Instead her aunt believes mama's boy Crispin Fallston would be a better partner for Diana.
Edmond finds himself fascinated yet concerned over the way Diana seems to spy on him. Everywhere he goes she is there, staring as if she can look inside him. Even more bewildering to the notorious rake than this seemingly harmless stalking, is that he begins to feel he loves the outrageous chit. Although she knows not to become involved with Edmond, Diana reciprocates his feelings.
This is an entertaining Regency romance because of Diana, who serves as a refreshing lead protagonist and the extracts from her novel included within this book make for fun reading. Edmond is the stereotypical rake whose image needs PR as it fails to hold up to the reality quickly understood by the wannabe author. The support cast enables readers to understand the two stars and hopefully his friend Brix and perhaps his bane Fanny will star in the next tale in 1817 not when he turns fifty.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner