"To have sex or not to have sex"—that is the question hotel-spa owner and physical therapist Annie O'Toole must ponder when Sam McKade, a wounded Navy SEAL suffering amnesia, is sent under strict security to her for rehabilitation. Among the memories locked in his brain are a traitor's name and the tender affair Sam had with Annie before he set off on his final mission. Skye (Going Overboard) delves deep into the details of a spa owner's responsibilities but skims over creating a credible romantic conflict. At the same time, Sam's relentless, heavy-handed propositions to Annie, whom he doesn't remember, cast him more as a lecher than a hero, and the novel's focus on Annie's fear of intimacy fails to take into account the couple's recent affair. Nevertheless, the action and emotional turmoil heat to a rolling, and more convincing, boil toward the finale when the unmasked traitor tracks Sam to Annie's spa. Less a romance or thriller than a hotelier's handbook, this frothy tale misses its mark, spurring more interest in Annie's various spa remedies than in whether she and Sam will live long enough to make a future together. (Feb. 5)
Forecast:Dell is launching this title with a spa gift-certificate sweepstakes, which should prompt luxury-loving readers to pick up the book. A
Romantic Times cover ad as well as print advertising in
First for Women,
Dallas Morning News, etc. will also draw readers in, but her fans may find themselves longing for a story with a little more depth.