cover image Silver Lady

Silver Lady

Mary Jo Putney. Kensington, $16.95 trade paper (272p) ISBN 978-1-4967-4663-4

Bestseller Putney (Once a Laird) is writing for her longtime fans these days, setting up expected story pins and bowling them down cleanly, albeit from very short range. In this series-starting Regency paranormal, she adds some supernatural conceits: her heroine foresees the future and her hero has preternaturally strong intuition. In other words, every plot development is articulated in advance and there’s no waiting around for an act or two to fire Chekhov’s gun. The story kicks off when Home Office agent Bran Tremayne is identified as the lost heir to a Cornwall barony. His reluctant homecoming is beset by family resentments, smugglers, and possible French agents. Merryn Penrose literally stumbles into his life as an amnesiac fleeing brutal kidnappers—and sparking undeniable feelings. The couple’s dynamic has an outdated vibe (“He was strong and she was weak, in some ways little more than a child”) and, while the story’s outline is more suspenseful than cozy, simple characterizations and (literal) predictability make this a comfort read, not a page-turner. This is old-school fluff, designed to go down easy. (Dec.)