The Poisoned Serpent) leaps into the contemporary romantic suspense arena with this smart, compelling read. Unlike some "/>

SILVERBRIDGE

Joan Wolf, Author . Warner $6.99 (416p) ISBN 978-0-446-61042-1

After years of writing historicals, Wolf (The Poisoned Serpent) leaps into the contemporary romantic suspense arena with this smart, compelling read. Unlike some who have floundered making the jump, Wolf delivers characters who, for the most part, move easily in their modern skins, and she wisely incorporates her historical strengths through Regency-era ghosts. When American movie star Tracy Collins first sees the English estate of Silverbridge, she's jolted by an odd sense of recognition. Even more powerful is her immediate attraction to the current earl, Harry Oliver. Neither experience, however, prepares her for the star-crossed ghost lovers who bear an eerie resemblance to her and Harry. Telling himself he's too busy to deal with a movie star, Harry tries to ignore his feelings for Tracy as he fends off a developer's bid to buy a portion of his ancestral estate. But when suspicious fires break out and Harry's brake lines are cut, the two must join forces to discover the villain. The novel's weaknesses lie mostly with Tracy, who favors such clunkers as "As I have discovered, to my sorrow," and a too-British use of "ghastly." Her contentment to call a man her own age "my lord" also rings false. But Wolf certainly hasn't plunged in over her head with this shift. As always, she paints both conflict and setting with a sure hand. (May)

Reviewed on: 04/08/2002
Release date: 05/01/2002
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