By Lila DiPasqua, Berkley, $15.00, 336 pages

10You really should handle this book with asbestos (or other flame-proof material) gloves! Merci! Lila DiPasqua takes three classic fairy tales and turns them into fiery tales. Does she ever!

All three are set during the time of Louis XIV and two of them share one of the more unpleasant characters in the book. Not to fret, he’s nowhere near being a hero! The first, The Marquis’ New Clothes, features a fashion-loving Marquis who has two armoires full of gorgeous new coats. Problem is, a pretty young lady has dropped a ring in the pocket of one of them. She besieges her cousin to conduct the search.

The Lovely Duckling, having been badly burned as a youngster, doesn’t know she’s as lovely as the Duc’s son thinks she is. Of course, that’s why veils and other semi-concealing garments were made, isn’t it? Not to mention dark rooms.

Finally, The Princess and the Diamonds faintly resembles the princess and the pea. Silvie is the daughter of the King by one of his mistresses, but she is still at his command. Mathias is enlisted to end a particularly dangerous gambling game that has sent several people into bankruptcy.

All’s well that ends well, but not without a lot of sizzle in the process. You won’t soon forget these incendiary tales!

Reviewed by Kelly Ferjutz