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    DON'T LOOK BACK by Amanda Quick (see her website)

    Bantam Books, June 2002

    Lavinia Lake and Tobias March have worked out a business arrangement of a sort. As confidential investigators, they work together to solve mysteries for hire. Their personal arrangement, however, remains much more up in the air. The physical attraction is clear, but each has goals for their lives--goals that may not include the other. And each feels responsible for another--Lavinia for her orphaned niece and Tobias for his brother-in-law--and those two also seem to be falling in love. In regency-era England, falling in love simply will not do unless it comes with the appropriate family and social baggage--and Lavinia doen't intend that her niece accept less than full acceptance into society.

    The evolution of their relationship is complicated by the arrival of an old family friend of Lavinia--a mesmerist who is newly married to a beautiful, flirtatious, and much younger wife. When the wife is killed and a precious antique broach goes missing, the mesmerist asks for Lavinia's help. But could he be the actual killer? Tobias's suspicions war with Lavinia's faith in her family friend threatening to drive the two apart. Pure sensual desire, however, keeps them from moving too far distant.

    Author Amanda Quick (see more reviews of novels by this author) delivers the clever dialogue readers expect in regency-era historicals, together with a mystery plot and a pair of evolving relationships. Quick's strong writing keeps the reader glued to the pages despite her occasonal reliance on coincidence to bring clues to the front. Fans of SLIGHTLY SHADY (see our review) will enjoy this sequel.

    Four Stars

    Reviewed 10/15/02

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