Matilda Candy doesn't mind that the people of Tanglewood, Mississippi, believe that she's a witch.The rumors provide Matilda with a measure of privacy and freedom from unwanted visitors. She learned much of her grandmother's craft, who's name she also bears. So when a stranger comes to the door looking for her grandmother, she offers her help.
Declan Harper has little patience for ineptitude and determines to own the town and run it by his own exacting standards. He's going to own the town that once scorned him, and every business in it. When he overhears two children, Hason and Grechen, talking with their mother about a witch, he recalls Matilda Candy fondly, as the only townsperson who treated him well and believed in his positive future. The only thing Declan wants, that he doesn't yet have, is Vanessa Arrington. So he hopes Matilda Candy can help. After he realizes the old woman has passed away, he asks the young Matilda for a love potion. Declan insists, despite her assurances that there are no magic potions to affect the workings of the heart. She can, however, create an aphrodisiac -- a lust potion.
To Declan's way of thinking, Vanessa is the paragon of feminine beauty. In addition, marriage to her offers the perfect revenge. Her father had always referred to him as "that Harper boy", calling him and his sisters poor white trash. The elder Arrington hadn't yet equated the wealthy Declan with the boy he'd maligned years ago. Declan looked forward to enlightening him, maybe after the wedding.
As Matilida turns the pages of aged and dusty books, she finds a note from her grandmother cautioning her about trifling with ways of the heart. Matilida and Declan are kindred spirits, both knowing what is to be on the outside looking in. Both have strong purpose in their lives. What Matilida would really like to give him is a common-sense potion, rather than a love potion to win a vain, vacuous ninny. Nevertheless, she draws up the potion, which they test on themselves. Let the fireworks begin!
This whimsical, entrancing tale will satisfy the romance fan demanding something unusual and wonderful. With a skillful blend of the fanciful and the mundane, author Linda Jones weaves a marvelous tale of love and happy ever after, with a twist. Remarkable in imagination, INTO THE WOODS is very highly recommended.