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23 May 2006

Nobody's Darling (1998)

By Teresa Medeiros

From Amazon: "Spinster Esmerelda Fine is intent on arresting Billy Darling, the man she believes killed her little brother. When the police can't get the job done, she leaves her home in Boston and travels to Calamity, New Mexico, where she confronts Billy in the Tumbleweed Saloon. When the town sheriff refuses to arrest Billy, Esmerelda takes matters into her own hands and aims her pistol right at him. She doesn't trust the handsome youngest brother of the infamous Darling gang, but Billy convinces her to hire him to find her beloved brother who isn't dead after all. Billy gets more than he bargained for in Esmerelda, while she struggles to maintain a suitable distance from the charming Billy and is dismayed to find that she is losing her heart to the outlaw."

I think I read a novel by Teresa Medeiros years and years ago, but I cannot recall the title. I chanced on this book by accident at the library and decided to try her again. While Nobody's Darling is a much more conventional romance when compared to the two by Loretta Chase I just finished, it was funny, hot, and well-crafted. Conventions: virgin heroine, rough-riding hero who makes whores swoon, a nasty, corrupt lawman, and a few too many BIG MISUNDERSTANDINGS. The secondary characters were mostly flat and trite, the ending was radically predictable, but the story was - thankfully - focused almost entirely on the hero and heroine. Ah well - I do not mind the tried-and-true as long as the result is riveting and engaging.

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