His Expectant Neighbor

Love, Your Secret Admirer

The Rancher & the Heiress

Prince Baby by Susan Meier
(Silh. Rom. #1783, $4.25, PG) ISBN 0-373-19783-7
Prince Baby sounds like a fairytale gone awry. Boy meets girl in Miami and they are in lust for a whole two weeks before they marry. Then the girl’s father, who happens to be the King of a small country, Xavier Island, makes her come home. Once there, the King forces the girl to annul the marriage because she was already betrothed. He interrupts her correspondence with the boy and the boy’s correspondence with her. Then the girl finds out she is pregnant. She leaves the country (since the betrothal is now broken) and heads to Arkansas to tell the boy he is soon to be a father.

The above is the background. The story actually begins when the girl, Princess Lucy Santos shows up on the doorstep of the boy, Seth Bryant. But she doesn’t have time to warn him about the baby, because he is about to be born NOW. Seth, being the nice man that he proclaims to be, invites her in and delivers his son. He immediately begins to figure out how to get custody of Owen before Lucy takes off on him. Lucy, meanwhile, plans to hang around long enough to learn how to care for the new heir to the throne so her father cannot force a nanny on her. She wants to give her son a “normal life” by being a real mother to him. She is also willing to give Seth visitation at the Palace.

The entire tale consists of the two antagonists attempt to deceive the other about their plans, while trying to act like they have no plans. Oh, yes, they also fight the huge lust that has sprung up again, even after being apart 9 months. The fact that Lucy is unable to have sex is of little significance.

Lucy makes friends in the small town and the women rally around her to teach her how to be a mom. Seth’s brother, who is also his business partner, helps him by sending him out of town for weeks at a time to make Lucy realize how much she needs Seth. The plans are neither well thought out nor likable, but hey, a plan is a plan. In the background is the continual threat of a deadline. Once the Xavier Island parliament lets out, Lucy expects her father to come to collect her and take young Owen home to begin training him to be the next King, something Seth vows will never happen.

Lucy is selfish and totally without backbone. Seth is too caught up in his angst over his previous heartache and anger to think clearly. In some ways both the hero and the heroine are TSTL (too stupid to live) so at some point I became resigned to the fact that they deserved each other. Poor Owen.

Small town life is once again like “Leave It to Beaver.” Yet, these folks act like they have never seen a baby. They are so wrapped up in helping that they don’t see the idiocy of the plans they are helping to implement. Depth of character is definitely missing.

The redeeming grace of the story is that it is entertaining to watch all the antics of two people trying to avoid having sex and admitting their lust. It is actually entertaining to watch the by-play of the various characters as they walk the minefields. It is almost like a sinfully decadent chocolate that you know you should avoid but you just have to keep tasting.

I cannot recommend Prince Baby, nor can I say it is average. It is full of lust and sexual tension. It just doesn’t have much else going for it.

Shirley Lyons


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