cover image Seducing the Heiress

Seducing the Heiress

Olivia Drake, . . St. Martin's Paperbacks, $7.99 (312pp) ISBN 978-0-312-94345-5

This decadent Regency romance debut is carried along by a spunky heroine and sumptuous descriptions of upper-class life. Raised in India, beautiful Portia Crompton arrives in London just in time to be the premier debutante of the season. Portia—independent, witty and pragmatic—knows her many suitors really just want her enormous dowry. The disgraced, impoverished and devastatingly handsome Viscount Ratcliffe, Colin Byrd, romances her shamelessly, leaving Portia struggling to reconcile her forbidden love for her Indian childhood sweetheart with the passion Colin inspires. Portia's socially ambitious mother would like to see her wed to the immoral duke of Albright, but as Portia uncovers the true nature of Colin's character, she warms to him, and readers will too. The culminating bedroom scene does not justify the long buildup, but there's enough glitz to keep readers coming back. (Dec.)