by Peggy Daniels, Allison Knight, Deborah Matthews

January 2002
ISBN: 0-8217-7261-9
Reviewer Graphic Button Zebra Books
Mass Market Paperback

Three writers offer sweet Valentines to their readers in this anthology, all linked to the common theme of Valentine’s Day Romance! Peggy Daniels takes her love story Can I Call You Sweetheart out west, where Amber Parrish lives with her son on her late husband’s ranch. She is stunned when her old love returns ready to sweep her off her feet. Little does Nick Parrish know that not only didn’t Amber wait for him but she married his brother Joe! There are many complexities in this lovely story – admittedly few that really involve Valentine’s Day, but the romance runs hot and true and on that level it’s most entertaining.

Allison Knight heads back to the Regency for some Winter Roses and introduces us to concerned elder sibling Gavin Sinclair who wants to save his brother from a runaway marriage. At the same time, concerned elder sibling Merry Ward was trying to save her sister from a runaway marriage – and no prizes for guessing who abducts whom by mistake! Lots of fun, a little sex and much happiness for all after all the misunderstandings are cleared away.

Finally Deborah Matthews asks Be Mine, a love story also set in the Regency, which involves two potentially mismatched couples. Here, the hero of the tale has the unfortunate title of Lord Valentine, which causes him endless aggravation. His aunt, sporting the unlikely name of Cupid Valentine, takes her nomenclature seriously and goes all out when it comes time for matchmaking! Unfortunately, she picks the wrong sister (it pays to be an only child if you want to get the hero first time around) for Valentine, who decides in no time at all that he wants Grace Templeton, sensible older sister, not Lucinda, twittery young thing! Of course, because this is a romance, Valentine happens to have a younger cousin, Matthew, who is just perfect for Lucinda, and much of the tale involves the two young men outwitting their aunt and ensuring they spend time with the woman of their choice. It’s delightful, the characters are charming, there’s a mild seduction thrown in to spice up the proceedings, and it ends just as it should.

These three tales are lovely romances – not unlike Valentine candies – sweet, but not destined to last! I recommend this book as a charming diversion, but probably not a keeper!

Reviewed in March 2002 by Celia.