by Bella Andre, Doreen DeSalvo, Myln Hurn

January 2004
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Candy Store by Bella Andre opens this anthology. Candy maker Callie Moore is in danger of losing her dream, Callie’s Candie’s if she doesn’t turn a profit soon. She is hoping that her meeting with the Candy King, Toby Danville, will change all that. What she doesn’t count on is the Candy King and her partner in sex from her best friends wedding to be one and the same. What happens next is a tale of seduction, and sweet, sweet surrender.

Doreen DeSalvo gives us A Valentine Bride. When John DiAngelo’s mail-order bride, Francesa, dies before they are married 6 months, he sends a request to Italy for his money back to buy more land. He has decided he doesn’t need a wife, but he does need his money to buy more land. What he gets is a replacement, her sister, Mariana. All Mariana wants is to be a Valentine’s Day bride. When John rejects her, she will do anything to get him to change his mind. What develops is a battle of wills between two stubborn, strong willed people. Miscommunication and misconceptions are slowly chipped away by the healing power of love.

Valentine Wishes by Mlyn Hurn is the next and last story in this anthology. Valentine Vale hates Valentines Day or National Suck-Up Day. All of her relationships have been with men who didn’t believe in Valentine’s Day and she just adopted their views. When she returns to NY at her mothers’ request to help with a fashion show and to meet her mother’s new husband. She never expects to fall in love. With an ex-boyfriend trying to pick up where he left off Valentine is at a loss what to believe anymore. When her stepbrother Kirk decides to show her what she’s is missing, Valentine decides maybe there is something to this love business. She is definitely going to have a good time exploring all her options.

Three couples disillusioned and hurt in the past, attempt to rediscover the true meaning of love. Revolving around the ultimate romantic holiday, Valentine’s Day, Passionate Hearts is full of passion and hot sex. I enjoyed all three stories. They each tell a different story but with one central theme, that its never too late for love and that it comes when you least expect it.

Reviewed in March 2004 by Carolyn.