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BRIDES OF THE WEST: ROMANCE ANTHOLOGY
MICHELE YOUNG, BILLIE CHAI, KIMBERLY IVEY
ISBN# 978-0-9800356-4-3
February 2008
Highland Press
PO Box 2292, High Springs, FL 32655
Paperback
$9.95
225 Pages
Western Historical Romance
Rating: 5 Cups

Satin and Snakeskin by Michele Ann Young

Tess Dalton travels to New York City from London, only to find herself destitute. Needing a place to stay, she accepts the position as a mail order bride. She had no idea arriving in Texas would be completely different from her homeland.

Jake Redmond has a ranch in Texas. He sure does not need any fancy city gal for a wife. He does need someone to help with the cooking and taking care of his nephews but Tess is entirely different from what he is expecting.

To her surprise, after the stagecoach drops Tess off she had no idea she would first encounter a snake then Jake. It was not her plans to become a mail-order bride but she was desperate. She was looking for her brother, but after being robbed in New York, she had no funds. Her only escape led her to a man with two rowdy nephews. Now she is the cook, and caretaker for the boys, until she has enough money to leave. Jake really did not think Tess belonged in his neck of the woods. She does not even know the difference between a ranch and a farm but she does know how to cook and train his nephews to be gentlemen. Jake never expected the frilly young gal to blanket his heart with a mountain of love but how can he tell her never to leave?

Satin and Snakeskin is a page-turner read from the get-go. Michele Ann Young creates interesting characters that dance off the pages. She crafts a great plot with such robust and vibrant characterization that once I started reading Tess and Jake’s story I could not stop. Tess knows how to make a man shake in his boots, not to mention some rough and dirty nephews. I loved this story.

Gray Wolf’s Bride by Kimberly Ivey

Evangeline Braddock Payne hopes by fleeing to Texas, with her son, she will find safety. After answering an ad for a mail-order bride, she hopes her life will change for the better.

Gray Wolf MacKinnon, Adam Smith, has always loved Evangeline but ten years ago a brutal attack separated them. He never forgot how she left him to die.

Evangeline, no longer married to the monster she had wed, is finally widowed and able to marry whom she will. The one thing she seeks now is to forget any pain, and find safety with a man who can offer her and her son security and perhaps peace of mind. When she heads to Texas as a mail-order bride, never in her life did she know it would be the one true love of her life. It has been ten long years but Gray Wolf will never forgot Evangeline’s face and when he sees her picture in a mail-order-catalog he intends to find out why she left him half-beaten to die. Informing her he is Adam Smith, with a huge ranch who needs a wife and helpmeet, he can only hope she will answer his letter and accept his offer. When Evangeline and Adam finally meet, the sizzle begins.

Gray Wolf’s Bride is a heart-tugging tale. One can feel the depth of love inside the character’s hearts. Evangeline and Gray Wolf are exceptional players who come alive within the pages. I could share in their sorrow and joy. Kimberly Ivey instills a breathtaking read while showing how forgiveness, and even a second chance at happiness, can survive in a land full of people that hold prejudice and hatred in their hearts. This read is outstanding. She even sketches in a really bad villain.

The Chances Are Bride by Billie Warren Chai

Sheriff Josh Morrow believes the little mail-order bride is pretty. Too bad she came all this far only to be faced with bad news. This was one part of his job he hated.

Annabelle Yeager cannot believe her husband to be is dead. She has no money, and no way to get home, and for the life of her, cannot really mourn for a man she did not know.

Josh hated telling Annabelle her betrothed is dead. She was attractive. Then again he was sort of glad she did not have to wed the man he knew was no good. As for Josh, he promised never to find love again. He still carried guilt over his fiancé’s death. Annabelle hears the news and wonders what her next resource will be. No husband, no money, no home, what will happen to her? Then again she really could not return home, there was nothing there for her except being a maid to five brothers and a Pa. Then she learns about an inheritance but for some reason her life continues to fall in jeopardy, sending Josh to her aid but is it enough to push them together for a lifetime of happiness?

I thought The Chances Are Bride was a quaint little read. I liked Josh and thought he was just the right person for Annabelle. They both are a sweet couple that I kept cheering to get together. The attraction they feel for each other is beautifully incorporated into the storyline by Billie Warren Chai. She creates an action-packed plot with a bit of suspense when it appears Annabelle has someone out to stop her at whatever she does. Filled with romance and passion, this tale is superb.

Brides of the West are three really extraordinary tales that speak loudly about the Wild West and the strong women with backbone to endure whatever acts they must to survive in an untamed land. Each of the women has their own unique traits making them special. The men that stand by them are gentle and loving and made the storyline even more incredible. The authors have crafted three excellent stories that this reader will not forget. I fell in love with each of them. They fashion believable characters that are true-to-form in their actions. I highly recommend this read. I found it powerful.

Cherokee
Reviewer for Coffee Time Romance
Reviewer for Karen Find Out About New Books

 

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