Restoration balderdash--in which the prime excitement centers on the length of time it takes chisel-featured, inseam-straining Chadwick Hawthorne to decide to consummate his marriage to luscious, bodice-bending Chelynne Mondeloy. Chelynne, orphaned ward of her uncle Lord Mondeloy, has entered innocently into this marriage, unaware (as is her uncle), that Chad was previously married--to humble Anne, who died giving birth to a son, whom Chad has hidden on his Jamaica estate. Grieving for his dead wife and believing that his son's inheritance is threatened by the new marriage (forced upon him by his father), Chad cannot bring himself to love his bride. . . who is naturally bewildered. In this pervasive atmosphere of unrelieved tumescence the subplots pale, although there's considerable going on in Bryant county: Chad and fellow Royalist John Bollering secretly plot to win back the Bollering estate, which has been grabbed by scoundrelly local tyrant Shayburn; there are mysterious and violent forces at work purloining evidence of Chad's first marriage; and there is just the possibility that Chelynne might be the illegitimate daughter of Charles II--whose ardour for the ripe lass cools when this is mentioned at bedside. (""Christ,"" he mutters while shrugging on his shirt.) After strenuous conflicts, dangerous flights, and titillating foreplay, at last Chad sees the light; Shayburn is brought to justice; and Chelynne's parentage is clarified. Dizzy but busy.