cover image Remembrance


Jude Deveraux. Pocket Books, $22 (0pp) ISBN 978-0-671-74459-5

Every cause has its champion. Now past-life therapy-the practice of curing neuroses through hypnotic regression into previous lifetimes-has its own in bestselling romance writer Deveraux, whose latest concerns a similarly bestselling romance writer whose problems stretch back centuries. Hayden Lane becomes so obsessed with her fictional hero, James Tavistock, that she loses her fiance, her editor's favor and, increasingly, her sense of reality. After a visit to a psychic convinces Hayden that her troubles are due to past-life tragedies, she consults a hypnotist who transports her back to Edwardian England, when Hayden was Catherine Tavistock, Lady de Grey, and married to Adam Tavistock (the embodiment of the fictional James). Adam is about to divorce Catherine for alleged rampant infidelity, but in fact Catherine is still a virgin, with Adam unable to consummate their marriage. To get to the bottom of this problem, Catherine, whose body now contains Hadley's consciousness as well as her own, allows herself to be hypnotized back to Elizabethan times, where the tale unfolds of how earlier incarnations of Catherine/Hayden and Adam/James loved one another but betrayed that love. It is the curse of lost love and dashed happiness ensuing from these 16th-century events that Hayden/Catherine must now break in Catherine's era, changing history and allowing Hayden to find happiness and her real hero. The novel gets off to a shaky start as the author has her alter ego rattle on about the virtues of romance writers and the vices of the reviewers who fail to praise them, but once Hayden discovers her past lives, this is standard Deveraux-that is, a smart and savvy swoon of a yarn. Doubleday Book Club main selection. (Dec.)