cover image Charmed


Julie Beard, Eileen Wilks, Jayne Ann Krentz. Berkley Publishing Group, $7.99 (356pp) ISBN 978-0-425-17129-5

The lead story in this Halloween-themed collection by bestselling author Krentz (Absolutely, Positively) is Castle's ""Bridal Jitters,"" a futuristic romance about a ghost-hunter and a para-archeologist who consider entering into an ""MC,"" or marriage of convenience. Historical-romance author Beard's time-travel novella ""Man in the Mirror"" follows, in which a medical student goes back to the sixth century to save a badly wounded Arthurian knight. Both stories are ordinary at best. Surprisingly, it's Krentz's lesser-known romance fiction pen names--Lori Foster (""Tangled Dreams"") and Eileen Wilks (""Pandora's Bottle"")--that deliver the goods. In the kinky (but not tasteless) novella ""Tangled Dreams,"" a hunky bartender is privy to a young woman's every sexy thought, and must help the two ghosts sharing her home find the closure they seek. The handsome green-eyed djinnin ""Pandora's Bottle"" openly desires his master's sprightly fianc e, and it's a rivalry to the death between both suitors in this magical tale. (Oct.)