SABLE by Ellen Tanner Marsh


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Like mother, like daughter: Sable St. Germain is the offspring of breathy Raven Barrancourt and leering Charles St. Germain (Wrap Me in Splendor, 1983)--so it's not surprising that she goes through most of this 1860s bodice-buster in a lustful dither over a menacing hulk of manhood. Sable, 18, first meets Capt. Morgan Carey at a dance up in London, where there's one mega-kiss. Then Morgan turns up at the St. Germain estate down in Cornwall, in hush-hush conference with beloved papa. Could it be that Sable's about to be married off to the gorgeous/scary mariner? So she believes--and eagerly sails off instead to Tangier with her brother, on a business-trip for ailing pa. But then--guess what? Sable goes overboard in a nautical accident, only to be rescued by. . . Captain Morgan, of course, who's on his way to Turkey to rescue a Russian pal from Crimea days. En route, the Captain and his unhappy passenger bicker and lust routinely. She dons leather crew-wear. He murmurs: ""You play with fire when you dress as you do."" Eventually, amid some Istanbul sightseeing, their passion is consummated (""unbearably exquisite ecstasy"") in a Turkish bath--after which the rescue mission proceeds, with an unscheduled appearance by Sable, saving her lover's life. But happiness ever after won't come for another 150 pages or so because, back in England, Sable is pregnant and puzzled by her Captain's disappearance. . . while the hunk himself is leaping around Paris and Wales in order to become worthy of Sable by winning his birthright (a murky tangle). Soft-core, standard, slow--and a lot less entertaining than the catalogue description, which locates Cornwall somewhere in the ""wild Scottish hills.

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 1984
Publisher: Berkley