by Heather Holland

September 2003
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She was a monster.

Or so mythology portrays her. Just the name Medusa conjures up the image of a hideous, snake-haired woman who turns people into stone at the mere sight of her. One would hardly think of her with a sympathetic heart. Until now.

In The Beauty Within, she is transformed into a heroine worthy of a strong, sexy hero. With a tad of interference from the gods, that hero is given to her. After a shipwreck during a storm, Theron, a sailor who is definitely strong and sexy, is washed upon the Isle of Samos where Medusa lives in exile.

Disoriented and struck blind, Theron is mesmerized by Medusa’s voice. Lonely and aching for companionship, she conceals who she is and calls herself Thais. When the opportunity arises, she jumps on it and makes one request of him—that he make love to her. And, boy, does he ever! The sex scenes will have you reaching for the ice water, turning on the fan, and reading frantically on. When the gods interfere yet again, only Theron can rescue Thais. But when he discovers who she really is, will he turn away in horror, or will he continue to see the beauty within.

In her debut novel, a Quickie from Ellora’s Cave, Heather Holland whisks the reader into a mythical world, superbly weaving this erotic tale with steaming sensuality and a touch of humor. She cleverly portrays the heroine as anything but the monster she is known to be. She succeeds in showing the humanity in all the characters, even the gods.

I read this captivating tale in one sitting, and several days later, I read it again. The Beauty Within is truly a keeper. Be on the look out for more titles from Ms. Holland. I know I will.

Reviewed in November 2003 by Jess.

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