by Denise A. Agnew, Tawny Taylor, Annie Windsor, Shiloh Walker, Mlyn Hurn, Jaid Black

December 2004
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Night Scream by Denise A. Agnew starts off this anthology with a spunky heroine whose goal is to become an agent with the Special Investigations Agency. While working late one night Evelyn hears a sound, and when she goes to investigate she runs straight into Special Agent Conall Tierney, the man who lately has been fueling all her fantasies. Conall can feel her need and wants the chance to make her dreams come true. Will the fact that heís immortal frighten Evelyn, or will she take a chance and let him show her what all heís learned over the years?

In Body Chemistry by Tawny Taylor, Lukas Brenner is a whiz in the lab, but not so competent when it comes to women. Allie Larson thinks Lukas has so much potential, and she wouldnít mind giving him a sexy makeover. During the annual Christmas Party, Lukas accidentally spills one of his concoctions, and next thing he knows the women are crawling all over him. He asks Allie to dance and is both dismayed and aroused when all of a sudden she canít keep her hands off of him either. He thinks a coworker is playing a joke, but Allie assures him sheís with him because she wants to be. Lukas takes her back to his place and she learns first hand you shouldnít judge a book by its cover! All Lukas has to do is figure out if Allieís feelings for him are real, or a chemical reaction. I enjoyed seeing Lucas take Allie by surprise with his desire to Ďexperimentí.

We head to the future in Annie Windsorís Earthwork. In 2800 Earth is much different, and itís up to the Warriors of Ais to fight the evil that wants to destroy them. Keli Dunkirk came across her powers as a wytch at a much older age than most, but her potential for power is amazing. Dram Wolfel has been her instructor, but inside heís hidden a desire to be much more. Wolf knows if he and Keli can manage to merge their bodies, and their minds, they would be almost unstoppable in their combined power. Keli makes her desire for him known, but he warns her that if she comes to him, she will be giving herself to him completely. Keli has dreamt of this and doesnít hesitate to take him up on his offer, hoping the giving of herself will allow her access into his heart. Despite a slow beginning and the futuristic setting, I really enjoyed this story. The submission scene was tasteful and well done.

Shiloh Walker entertains us with Ghost of a Chance. CJ Stivers is coming home to claim the house she has inherited. She never liked living there as a child and has nothing but bad memories. But now, with her life in turmoil, itís the only place she has to go. CJ begins to investigate the house, and comes across some old journals written by a girl named Katie, who lived in the 1800ís. CJ is confused when, while reading the journal, she knows whatís going to happen before it does. She sees herself with Lucas, the man Katie was in love with. A bit frightened, CJ researches the history of the house and learns of a terrible act of violence that brought an end to Katie and Lucasís lives. As she uncovers the truth, can CJ accept the fact that she might be Katie, come back for her true love?

Next is Past Running by Mlyn Hurn. Aeryn Michaels divorced her husband Craig after heíd been sent to jail for armed robbery. Sheriff Devlin McDonald at first wonders if she knows where her ex hid his stolen money. He knows itís not a good idea to get involved with her, but they arenít able to deny their desire for each other. When Craig escapes from prison, he takes Aeryn hostage, needing her help in escaping the police and in recovering his stolen money. Aeryn does her best to keep Craig from forcing himself on her and just hopes that Devlin is able to rescue her soon. Devlin is racked with fear over what might be happening to her and is racing to save her before it is too late. While this story dealt with no otherworldly or paranormal aspects, it certainly wasnít lacking for heat.

Jaid Black finishes off this anthology with The Beckoned. Wai Ashley and Jack Elliot have been connected by dreams for the whole of Waiís life. As a child he was a comfort to her, a haven from her abusive home. But as a woman the dreams changed and werenít the least bit childlike. While visiting an old settlement, Wai comes across two graves with their names on them and the date of 1776. She doesnít understand where she is, or when she is, but when she runs across Jack, she knows who he is. Jack canít believe his eyes; the woman from his dreams is standing right in front of him. Now Wai has to decide if she wants to try and get back to her own time, of if she wants to stay with Jack for whatever amount of time they have left to them.

This anthology is a blend of vampire, ghost, futuristic and time travel, but not all of the stories contain a paranormal story line. The common thread in all the stories was a strong heroine, a sexy hero and lots of chemistry. A great addition to the Tales From the Temple series.

Reviewed in January 2005 by Jackie.