Leisure, Mar 2002, 5.99, 304 pp.
In 1814 England, though her spouse is much older than her and ailing, Lady Diana Rainville loves Geoffrey. They both desperately want a child, but she is a pure innocent and he can no longer sire an heir. Desperate to not allow the estate to fall into the hands of a gambling wastrel, Geoffrey concocts a plan to have a surrogate father impregnate his shocked spouse. He turns to his nephew, a second son, to sire an heir.
Reluctantly Gavin Winslow agrees to the scheme only as a deathbed pledge he makes with his dying uncle. However, neither Gavin nor Diana could fathom the feelings that spring up between them and the length an unknown assailant abetting Montjoy will go to gain the inheritance.
SWEET DECEIT is an entertaining Regency romance that is at its best when the villains remain off stage and the plot focuses on the triangular relationship. When the honorable Gavin, the trusting and loyal Diana, and the memories of the good Geoffrey take center stage, the readers feel the angst and guilt of the lead protagonists as they fall in love with one another while also loving the deceased Geoffrey. When the villain and his partner intercede in the plot, they feel like intruders slowing down an engaging relationship drama. Lynn MacKay furbishes a wonderful historical romance that sub-genre fans will want to read and desire similar but more succinct works from this author.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner