The Legend MacKinnon

Legend of the Sorcerer

Tease Me

Your Wish Is My Command by Donna Kauffman
(Bantam, $5.99, PG) ISBN 0-553-58241-0
Ahoy, me maties! And who wouldn’t be wantin’ to meet up with a bold pirate who can match up soulmaties . .. er, soulmates?

OK. Sorry. Had to get that out of my system. Jamie Sullivan does meet up with a bold pirate after a long, hard, hot day of work in New Orleans. She finds an old sword in her new-to-her home and unsheathes it. And voila! There is Sebastien Valentin, a pirate genie, who matches soulmates for whoever calls on him before disappearing again. He says that she is his mistress since she unsheathed the magic sword and he will match soulmates for her.

Not surprisingly, Jamie doesn’t believe she is this guy’s mistress . . . though she has to admit it has a nice ring to it. She doesn’t even believe there is such a thing as a soulmate. After being married two times, she doesn’t think there can be such a thing as a lifetime love. Jamie has retired from her father’s speed racing business and formed a partnership with some friends. She wants a quieter, stable life. Instead Sebastien begins matching up her friends while she gets to view the results.

None of her friends should be easy to love. The first to fall is Marta, who had a true love, married him, and then became a widow. She had no intentions of falling in love again, but somehow she becomes attached to a lost dog. When the dog’s owner appears, Marta meets her new match. Soon after, Jamie’s second partner, Ree, finds love with the grandson of the man she is rumored to have “companioned” before he died. The grandfather was also the last man to make use of Sebastien.

Both of them are soon blissfully matched with the perfect man for them. Jamie is shaken and slowly comes to believe Sebastien must be who he says he is . . . an over two hundred year old genie and ex-pirate who helps people find lifetime romance in penance for his own sins of loveless passion.

Through all this, Jamie and Sebastien become ever more interested in each other, though Sebastien tells her it is his destiny to disappear from her life just as it is hers to find her true soulmate. They do make love of course, but Jamie tells him it’s because he can’t be permanently in her life that she will allow that. To his surprise, he’s the one who wants more. And, to his dismay, he realizes he is required to find her a soulmate whether or not either of them want him to.

The story is fun and the lovers’ dilemma is pretty unusual (although the recent Meredith’s Wish has a similar plot) though the characters never sparked for me as much as I’d like. Several scenes didn’t work: somehow the big scene where Sebastien must decide to risk everything for the chance to be with Jamie wasn’t as dramatic as I’d hoped. But I enjoyed lots of bits of the story - for example, it was amusing to see Sebastien learning to drive a car in exchange for Jamie learning to sail a boat.

You may not find the love of a lifetime with this book, but it was a good read while it lasted.

--Irene Williams

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