by Wendy Etherington

June 2005
ISBN: 0-373-69227-7
Reviewer Graphic Button Harlequin #1027
Mass Market Paperback

Laine Sheehan and her sister Cat have just learned that their family bar, Temptation, has not been spared by the historical preservation society and they have 30 days to vacate the building before the bull dozers arrive to demolish it to make room for a bigger highway. Laine must secure an income for both herself and her sister since the family business is about to go under, so her new job at Century, a national news magazine where she has recently been hired as a photographer becomes even more important. Laine pitches an idea to her editor go to California and do a story on the current wildfires that are taking place there. Laine also hopes to help her aunt who lives in California to evacuate before the fires get too close.

With her editorís approval Laine finds herself on the way to California. Little does she realize that she is about to come face to face with her old flame Steve Kimball.

When one of his close friends is killed Steveís old smoke jumping team asks him to return to California from Atlanta to help the team out. Seven years ago Steve and Laine had a summer love that looked like it would turn permanent but since Laine was too nervous about Steveís dangerous job to commit the affair never made it past the summer. As luck would have it Steve decided that being a smoke jumper wasnít exactly his lifetime calling and went back to Atlanta and joined the local fire department. His job is still dangerous but less so than being a smoke jumper.

When Steve and Laine run into each other after a seven-year separation will the old flames still be there? Has their time apart healed their broken hearts or are the feelings still the same after all this time? As the wildfires ravage the California forest this couple must make some tough decisions that will affect the rest of their lives. Is their love worth risking everything and will they take this second chance that fate seems to have given them?

The Eleventh Hour by Wendy Etherington gives the reader a perfect example of an All American Hero in Steve Kimball. Readers of Ms Etheringtonís previous work will welcome the story of Steve Kimball the last Kimball brother in her popular family of hero brothers. She does a great job of describing the brush fires and making them real for the reader. The reader can feel the danger just as Steve and Laine do. The reader also gets to catch up a bit with other Kimball family members in this story and Miss Etherington wraps up that family series quite nicely.

The Eleventh Hour has all the elements that make for a great Temptation story. A hot hero and lots of passion, conflict and of course love. The Eleventh Hour is another fine story from a talented author.

Reviewed in May 2005 by Barbara.

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