White Rose

Linda Ladd, Author Topaz $4.99 (384p) ISBN 978-0-451-40479-4
Cassandra Delaney is the White Rose, one of the Confederacy's most daring and successful spies. Derek Courtland is an Australian blockade runner, risking his life to bring supplies to the war-torn South. When he is captured by the Yankees, Cassie engineers his escape and escorts him to his ship in the Caribbean. Thanks to Cassie's James Bond-like bravura, all goes well until her brother, a high-ranking member of the Yankee secret service, discovers what she's been up to and arranges for Derek to kidnap her and take her back to Australia to keep her--and the Northern cause--out of trouble. When she discovers she's not going to North Carolina, Cassie is furious, but she can't ignore the growing chemistry between herself and her rakish, charming captor. And fortunately, besides being a spy, Cassie's also an anthropologist employed by the Smithsonian, so her anger soon abates as they stop at one exotic port of call after another. Cassie's researches instill in her a burgeoning feminist consciousness as she realizes that men are the same the world over; nevertheless, she finds herself increasingly drawn to Derek, who is charmed, in a typically masculine, patronizing way, by her intellectual curiosity. In Australia, where Derek must avenge the murder of his father, the action becomes so breathlessly, luridly melodramatic as to make Cassie's spying escapades seem like peanuts. The plot tends not to hang together in many places, dialogue is often stilted and Derek is rather a cardboard hero, but their bizarre adventures do keep the pages turning. (June)
Reviewed on: 05/30/1994
Release date: 06/01/1994
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