by Sandra Hill

ISBN: 0-446-61294-4
Reviewer Graphic Button Warner Books
Mass Market Paperback

After reading Tall, Dark and Cajun by Sandra Hill, I have a better appreciation for my daughterís decision to attend college in Louisiana. If the young men she meets there are anything at all like Remy LeDeux, then she is a very lucky young lady.

Rachel Fortier has had it with men! Under constant criticism about her weight and appearance, she finally snaps when she discovers her fiancť has betrayed her trust. Setting fire to all of the exercise equipment he's given her as gifts over their courtship, she creates quite a bonfire in the parking lot of their apartment building, reminiscent of the scene from Waiting to Exhale. She takes a leave of absence from the interior design firm where she works, and heads to the Acadian wilderness, to meet the grandmother she never knew she had. A child of the foster care system, Rachel found her birth mother dying, and was shocked to learn that she had relatives who wanted to meet her.

Intellectually she knew that the wilds of Louisiana would be very different from her Washington D.C. home, but reality was a shock. Her grandmotherís cabin is rustic and her family is slightly eccentric, but then so are most of the people she meets on the bayou. When she encounters Remy LeDeux, the attraction is immediate and powerful. She barely notices the scars marring half of his sinfully-handsome face - all she can see is potent male.

Remy cannot believe that this pampered career woman is kin to one of the swampís most unusual inhabitants - Gizelle Fortier, resident witch woman. However, he does like what he sees. The leggy redhead with the great curves is just the kind of woman to spark his interest. While he is wary about the chemistry racing between them, his family welcomes Rachel with open arms. Soon she is applying feng shui to his sisterís spa and redecorating his houseboat. And his Tante Lulu has given him a hope chest! It is all enough to make a man crazy!

Sandra Hill has found a way to bring the charm of the bayou straight onto the pages of her books, and this one, like itís predecessor The Love Potion, is another fine example of her skill as a writer. The background is sultry and ripe, the women earthy and passionate, and the men are incredible. Oozing charm, they fill out their jeans and t-shirts with natural physiques honed by hard labor not the gym. Her use of authentic dialogue adds just the right touch to the story - as do the cute asides to the reader that begin each chapter. Throw in some incredibly hot sex and you have a keeper.

Reviewed in October 2003 by Paula.

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