cover image Thief of Hearts

Thief of Hearts

Teresa Medeiros. Bantam, $7.5 (432pp) ISBN 978-0-553-56332-0

Historical romance readers searching for the dangerous, dark, brooding hero of the 1970s only have to look to Medeiros's (A Whisper of Roses) Captain Doom. Here's a rebel with a cause-to clear his name, which had been maligned by the ambitious Admiral Snow, leaving Doom to spend five years in a windowless dungeon. Doom's black phantom ship intercepts one carrying the admiral's daughter, Lucy. Although hardly able to believe his luck, Doom's conscience won't allow him to ravish her, which would, if not clear his name, at least blacken Snow's. Doom lets her go and then reappears later as Gerard Claremont, applying for the position of Lucy's bodyguard. While his purpose is to find documents in the admiral's house that will clear his name and incriminate the admiral, his constant contact with Lucy leaves Gerard torn between revenge and love. Lucy, an endearing heroine long deprived of her father's love, is also torn-between the mysterious Doom and Gerard. At length Doom reveals himself, Lucy learns a startling truth about her father, and there's some great high-seas adventure. Long-time historical romance readers will recognize this type of hero and many will breath a sigh of relief on discovering he is still alive and kicking around in a few authors' imaginations. (Oct.)