From back cover: Devil to Pay:
Emelina Stratton was desperate to save her brother's life. Desperate enough to ask mafia-chieftain-in-hiding Julian Colter for help. The man, shrouded in mystery and with lethal good looks, said yes. For a price, of course. Emmy would have the Devil to Pay. Especially since she was what Julian demanded in return.
Intellectual Sophia Bennnett knew what kind of man she wanted: a rugged cowboy. And in Texas they were everywhere! So why couldn't she take her eyes off brilliant professor Max Travers? He was a Wizard in mathematics who surely made love by the numbers. Yet every inch of him-no Stetson, no dusty boots-added up to dangerously sexy.
I don't think even 23 years ago I would have tolerated either of these two stories. Yes, I realize we are talking early Krentz stories here, but these were just irritating. Why would you involve yourself with anyone in the mafia no matter how cute they are? I know this is some of the author's earlier stuff, but the whole set-up was just flat. It wasn't the brother's life that was threatened, but his reputation. Why oh why do they reprint this stuff?
And the Wizard story--how about the professor should have just up and left Sophia where she was. Her comments to him, about what she perceives is his personality and the whole premise of this book just goes nowhere. The female characters were weak, inane, silly and trying to be just too cute. Especially Sophia.
Don't buy this like I did, wait till someone on PBS posts it.
A double reprint, both from the 80s - I think they were originally printed under the Stephanie James pen name. They have the usual 80s attitude - a strong man who thinks 'feisty' = 'cute' and a woman who thinks she can handle herself until she needs to be rescued by the man...
For those old enough to remember, consider it a trip down memory lane.