cover image Siren’s Call

Siren’s Call

Jayne Castle. Jove, $7.99 mass market (336p) ISBN 978-0-515-15574-7

The ultraprolific Jayne Ann Krentz dons her Castle pseudonym for the steamy fourth Rainshadow novel (after The Hot Zone), exploring Rainshadow Island’s alien tunnels and psychic powers. After perennial bridesmaid Ella Morgan unmasks a friend’s bridegroom at the altar as a two-time wife-killer, she blasts his mind with her hidden and rare psionic talent, which she’s sure renders her unmarriageable. Then she meets smoldering-hot Rafe Coppersmith, and for most of the rest of this torrid fantasy adventure, she repeatedly declares her disbelief that he not only doesn’t fear her but is intrigued by the notion of a confident, monster-slaying woman. Castle’s involved plot features the accustomed assortment of baddies, but Ella’s psionic ability (and her helpful companion, Lorelei, a bouncy creature called a dust bunny) defeats them all before Ella and Rafe reach matching high notes of ecstasy. Though entirely predictable and couched in standard romance genre language, this is still a pleasant pas de deux in which a liberated woman meets a dangerous hunk who lusts after both her curves and her cerebrum. Castle adroitly lets the sparks fly in this cozy escapist story. (Aug.)