by Shirlee Busbee

May l993
ISBN: 0-38075-212-3
Reviewer Graphic Button Avon Books
Mass Market Paperback

Savanna O'Rourke is not like other young woman in her time. (Doesn't it amaze you how many so-called "rare", willful young women there are in historical novels? You would think meek, obedient ones were the ones hard to come by in their day!) Savanna is the bastard daughter of a Spanish lieutenant and could care less about respectability. She runs a tavern and would rather not wear shoes or fancy gowns. She has never met a man who could match her but that is all about to change when she meets Adam St. Claire.

It all begins when Savanna joins forces with two outlaws who plan on stealing a treasure from Jason Savage, the man believed to kill her father, in order to revenge his death. Adam is mistaken for Jason Savage while staying at his house and is kidnapped. He keeps silent about his real identity in order to protect his friend. The tables are turned though when Adam escapes and takes Savanna as his hostage. This begins a harrowing adventure through the swamps of Louisiana with only each other to depend on.

Savanna wants to hate Adam/Jason since after all she believes him to be a murderer, but she can't help but be drawn to his virile masculinity. Adam thinks Savanna is a spitfire and an aggravating nuisance but he can't help but admire her beauty and spunk. Throw in some sexual tension and the sparks fly! (Although I don't think they fly nearly often enough.) Add a jealous ex-lover determined to get Adam back and a man hired to kill him and you've got a story full of excitement.

Even though Savanna had many characteristics of the typical romance novel heroine and wasn't very original, I couldn't help but like her. She was stubborn and headstrong but not to the point where it was irritating since she knew how to give in gracefully when she had no other choice. She was mature and usually thought of others before herself. It did get a little old reading the description of Savanna's "glorious golden-red hair and flashing aquamarine eyes" over and over again though - I didn't forget what she looked like from one page to the next.

Adam was also the stereotypical leading male romance character. He was extremely handsome, wealthy, accomplished in any number of skills and good in the sack - what more could any girl want? The only thing I didn't like about Adam was the fact that he would use any means possible to get his way with Savanna and that included using threats and brute force. However, he did show his love and concern for Savanna in many ways and it was very believable.

Each Time We Love was not my favorite Shirlee Busbee novel but it is definitely worth the time to read. I lost count of the many "romance novel clichés" in the storyline and the fact that I know Shirlee Busbee is capable of a much higher caliber of work was the one reason I didn't rate this book higher. The story did keep me interested from the first page to the last and was very entertaining.

Reviewed in August 2001 by Nicole.

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