A weary, ex-Civil War soldier travels to Fort Worth to collect his brother’s mail-order bride, a beautiful belle eager to escape war-ravaged Georgia, and finds the object of his heart.
This was my first non-Regency by Lorraine Heath and wow, she did a great job.
- If you like your romances on the more “gentle”, not-so-steamy side this is the book for you. Lots of looks, conversation, some kissing, and one tasteful sex scene.
- The tension! After Dallas goes and breaks his leg he sends his brother Houston to pick up his mail order bride. Houston and Amelia start off on the wrong foot but the three week ride back to the ranch gives them lots of time to know each other. And talk. And woah, look at her hair. ;)
- The characters are wonderfully developed, and even those that only grace a few pages have personality and a back story. I can’t wait to read the other brothers’ stories, especially Austin.
- Little bits of history were dropped in here and there but never felt preachy or unnatural.
- There’s a Big Misunderstanding that’s handled in a way I’ve never seen before. Usually I can’t stand it when people refuse to talk to each other, but considering who’s involved it makes complete sense. Still not my favorite trope, but it’s done well.
- I like my romances a bit more steamy. I’m not taking points away or anything, but if you’re used to high heat levels this may feel a bit tame.
- The setting felt like it came from Western movies I saw more than any description Heath provided. It just felt… flat. Oh geez, that’s a pun but it’s accurate.
- I generally like tortured heroes but Houston felt a little one-note at the end there.
- The last quarter or so started to drag but that may have been me, as there’s certainly action right up to the end.
All in all a lovely novel by one of my favorite romance writers.