The Awakening of Dr. Brown

Eve's Wedding Knight

One Christmas Knight

One More Knight

The Seduction of
Goody Two-Shoes

Virgin Seduction by Kathleen Creighton
(Silh. Int. Mom. #1148, $4.50, PG-13) ISBN 0-373-27218-9
Cade Gallagher traveled to the tiny Middle Eastern country of Tamir to attend the wedding of his adoptive sister - not to get caught up in a royal scandal. While in Tamir Cade catches the eye of the Sheikís youngest daughter, Princess Leila Kamal. Leila is immediately smitten with the cowboy who is ten years her senior, and sets about trying gain his favor. Instead she finds herself gaining a husband!

Leila and Cade are soon caught in a compromising position by the Sheik himself. The two quickly find themselves married and heading back to Cadeís home in Texas. How can a marriage between two strangers possibly work?

I have to be honest here - not only do Arab Sheik books hold little appeal, but an arranged marriage scenario in a contemporary setting seldom works for me. Itís to the authorís credit that her entry in the ongoing Romancing the Crown series had me quickly devouring this story in a dayís time.

While Leila is 26, she is actually much younger emotionally - and itís not just the fact that sheís a virgin. Leila is a princess, a very sheltered one, and she has big dreams about what America and Americans must be like. One of the main reasons she finds Cade so appealing in the beginning is the fact he is American - so different from anyone she has ever met before. Normally the innocently-sweet-and-virginal heroine has me gritting my teeth before I can get past the first chapter. This wasnít the case with Leila. The author has a way of writing in her innocence without making her brain-dead. In fact, Leila is quite charming and likeable.

Cade is the typical, noble, honest, hard-working romance hero. He is fascinated by Leila - for her beauty, wide-eyed innocence, and playfulness. He finds himself proposing marriage to her out of his sense of nobility, but immediately feels like a cad for robbing her of life in Tamir, and a future with a husband who could make her happy.

My main quibble with Virgin Seduction (besides that dopey title!) is that by the end of the story, Cade and Leila are still relative strangers to each other. While the ending left no doubt that the couple were well on their way to a happily-ever-after, I still felt like they had a lot to learn about each other. Although with 7 more installments to Romancing the Crown, itís likely readers havenít seen the last of Cade and Leila.

A final note: readers should be aware that the only reason this book landed in the Silhouette Intimate Moments line is because the rest of the series falls there. Outside of Cade overhearing a conversation in the palace gardens, there is zilch in the way of suspense in this book. Honestly though, who needs an ax-murderer when thereís a perfectly lovely romance unfolding?

--Wendy Crutcher

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