Ivy, May 2003, 6.99
The first chance Lily Banyon could leave her hometown of Coral Beach, Florida she fled. It is several years later and she has become a highly regarded marine biologist renowned for her international work on coral reefs while working for the prestigious Marine Center in Massachusetts.
Coral Beach is in the midst of a controversy between the environmental leaning Mayor Sean McDermott and the business development leaning council over the reef. When the advisor Dr. Lesensky becomes deathly ill, the town obtains the assistance of the Marine Center to determine the health of the reef. Over her objection, a reluctant Lily is sent home to complete the study.
Immediately, Sean and Lily send attraction sparks to each other that could ignite the southeast. Both have secretly loved each other since their teen days, but circumstances and a lack of confidence has kept them from connecting. As they fall in love as adults someone tries to sabotage her efforts in favor of development regardless of the findings.
NIGHT SWIMMING is a pleasant contemporary romance that entertains on several levels besides the lead couple's skirmishes that hide their love for one another. Two engaging additional subplots (the health of reefs and the high school age “relationship” between Lily and Sean told in flashbacks) add leagues of depth. The villain is too greedy and sleazy to take seriously hurting the meaningful debate between environment and development. Still sub-genre fans will appreciate Laura Moore's fine tale.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner