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The Very Virile Viking

Hello, and welcome back! Spring is here, definitely, and it's brought me a really annoying bug with a cough that'll rattle one's brain and an on-again-off-again fever. Blech. Good thing I've got a good supply of reading material.

First up this week is Sandra Hill's The Very Virile Viking (Leisure). Ms. Hill's Viking heroes (and one heroine) are always sexy, always hilarious, and always a great read. This one is no exception. Magnus Ericsson finds himself and his eleven children in modern-day California, and things are quite odd. Angela Abruzzi just wants to keep her family's vineyard, though there is someone who doesn't want the competition. When these two meet, it's a wonder the pages don't burst into flame. This is the perfect story for when you need to lift your spirits--just don't read it when you've already got a cough and laughing will trigger the coughing. Steamy, funny, and bursting with great secondary characters. This one's a keeper. Of Cupid's five arrows, I'm borrowing four.

Next up is Teresa Hill's Bed of Lies (Onyx). Julie Morrison thinks she's finally got the perfect life--a decent job, a good man who wants to marry her, and she's far from her hometown and miserable memories. Zach McRae, however, reminds her of the things she'd rather forget--and makes her past come to life again, not to mention unexpected hormones. When Julie's lies are exposed and her perfect life comes crumbling down, she does what she knows she must: goes home to Ohio to deal with her past, and her future. Zach has his own issues to deal with, and they're even trickier than Julie's. As usual, Ms. Hill's story will touch your heart, make you cry and even make you smile. I'm giving this one four arrows also.

Finally, we have Nora Roberts's latest J. D. Robb, Portrait in Death (Berkley). Eve is back, but this time out, it's her husband Roarke who has some big personal issues to deal with, while she's trying to solve the new case--someone's killing young people and leaving cryptic messages about their "light." It's interesting, getting into Eve's mind as she tries to get into the killer's, watching the way her brain works. It's more interesting, though, watching the way she tries to deal with Roarke pushing her away while he fumbles his way through his problem. Great suspense, great characters--main and secondary--and just plain great writing, but I expect no less when I pick up a book with her name on the spine. Four arrows again.

As a reminder, the reader survey is still available. I'm doing a purely unscientific survey on what romance readers want and will share the results with you all in May, so the deadline on getting the surveys back to me is April 30, 2003. I hope you'll help me out.

As always, please join us in the forum to discuss our fave romance authors and their books. And until next week, happy reading!

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