cover image Texas! Chase

Texas! Chase

Sandra Brown. Doubleday, $16.95 (312pp) ISBN 978-0-385-41388-6

This slick contemporary romance focuses on a second member of the Texas Tyler family, the clan first seen in Texas! Lucky . It is a switch on the hoary scenario of boy loves girl, loses girl, wins girl: in these feminist times it is the girl (here a woman with her own real estate agency) who does the loving, the losing and the winning. Marcie Johns has loved Chase Tyler since grade school, but, being the class brain, knew she didn't have a chance with the handsome boy who called her Goosey. Years later, she has been retained by Chase and his wife, Tanya, to find the couple a house. When Tanya is killed in the car Marcie is driving, the bereaved Chase goes on the skids and it is Marcie who sobers him up, gets him back into the failing family oil business, offers a loan, proposes marriage. Marcie's machinations are misunderstood by Chase, adding a modicum of interest to an overly formulaic plot. The novel climaxes with Marcie and Chase in bed, where ``the pleasure was immense. Overwhelming. Ecstasy eddied around him in shimmering waves that matched the tempo of her gentle contractions.'' Apparently Brown intends to immortalize the Tylers in a trilogy, which should please those seeking hard-bound counterparts to the Ewings of Dallas. (Feb.)