Ecstasy's Magic

Sonya T. Pelton, Author Zebra $5.99 (0p) ISBN 978-0-8217-3623-4
There is no danger of confusing this inane and ineptly plotted costume romance with a historical novel, for Pelton ( Captive Dove ) seems unaware of any differences between 19th-century behavior and today's, evidenced in childish and vulgar dialogue that would never be spoken by authentically drawn characters. It is 1897 in River City, Iowa, and Miss Anna Lou Mayhugh, the prim proprietress of a ``Victorian clothing-and-miscellaneous shop,'' and Arnold Douglass, the homeless lad she has taken in, meet local newcomers handsome Maxwell Butler and his niece Sydney. Raped 12 years ago at the age of 13, Anna fears men but is comfortable with ``Maxy''; in fact, just eyeing his crotch gives her a ``warm tingling.'' Max, who returns Anna's high regard, woos her at a community picnic, at the circus, at an intimate dinner he cooks in his apartment and, finally, in her bedroom. Their discreet affair nearly derails in a squabble over money, providing a lull late in the story during which the author solves the mystery of Anna's rape with a neat but unlikely set of coincidences. (Jan.)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1992
Release date: 01/01/1992
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