Fantasy mingles with puppy-love and lust--in the person of pert Pandora. She's twelve and nubile. Mum's the famous actress Samantha West, dad's the scribbler of 15 novels (Pandora's read 'em all). To give the elders time to patch up their marriage, she is shipped off to Merlin's Hill, a Welsh hamlet past Swansea, to visit great-aunt Rachel. Rachel recludes in a variant on an American Georgia manse, a sort of mini-Tara, but with only two servants: the Welsh housekeeper, and Ewen, a clone from Heathcliff. Aunt Rachel is well over 80, but looks daisy-fresh 40. Herbs she eats, she does. But what or who is locked in the attic? Pandora begins seeing young ghosts, then falls for a village boy, Geraint, 14, and even surrenders her tenderest treasure to him. Together they explore the incredible cave under the Goblin Tree, and find the cavern where Merlin (yes, that Merlin) lives when he's not serving Aunt Rachel and helping her stay young. Then Pandora finds that rape can be fun, with dark, glowering Ewen, and that she is scheduled to replace the secret in the attic. . . . Young-adult stuff gone slightly seamy, with amusing ironies about prattling parents, but weak and woolly in all other respects--and, as for echoes of Sir Thomas Malory's glorious fey creatures of magic, forget it.