The Sweetest Thing

Barbara Freethy, Author Avon Books $6.5 (384p) ISBN 978-0-380-79481-2

An ominous curse (""And the winds will curse your life until you return to where it began"") propels Freethy's latest novel (after One True Love), which involves a romance that ended when two young lovers, Julian Carrigan and a girl named Suzannah, stole an Indian pot from a burial site. Fifty years later, Alex Carrigan has more than he can handle with his dotty grandfather, Julian, who has crazy ideas about finding his old flame and returning the Indian pot to its resting place, let alone a smart-mouth teenage girl insisting he's her father. And then there's bakery shop owner Faith Christopher, who adds fuel to the fire with her recipe for love. As it turns out, Faith has a psychic connection with the pot and a spiritual connection with the teenager, which involves her in long-time bachelor Alex's life, whether he likes it or not. Together they agree to help Julian find his beloved and end the 50-year-old curse. Beyond this, there isn't much to stir the reader's senses: Alex and Faith are romance-formula protagonists and the plot line is predictable. (Apr.)