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Old Colorado West. Outlaws. Lawmen. Doctors. And the women who love them.

14 years ago, Duke Foster was shot in the leg and crippled by lawman Chet McCarty, who had tracked Duke following a string of armed robberies in Missouri and Kansas.  While doing 10 years in Leavenworth, he secretly became friends with a prison guard. Once paroled, Foster handsomely paid his friend for what he’d done for him during the years he was imprisoned. 

Present day, that guard now works in another position the federal building in Denver, and has his ear to the ground.  He hears that Chet McCarty is on his way out to Denver.  After notifying Foster, it doesn’t take long for the gang to come up with a plan to kidnap McCarty; shoot him in the leg, and force him to live out his days confined in their hideout in the San Juan mountains.

The thorn in their side is U.S. Chief Marshall John Brockman, aka known as “the Stranger.”  John is a preacher gunman, and subordinate to Chet McCarty.  They are also friends.  John has an uncanny knack for killing those out to kill him, particularly in situations where normal men would be outmanned and outgunned.

Throw into the mix John’s wife, Breanna, a country doctor, a new nurse, and a Christian hospital staff, and you have a good mix of intrigue and concurrent plots to keep your interest.

I will say, I was initially thrilled that this book has locales that are my personal favorites in the country- the San Juan mountains in southern Colorado, Gunnison, Black Canyon, and Monarch Pass. (If you’ve never had the chance to get to these places- GO!  You won’t regret it! Here’s a picture of the Black Canyon area- see what I mean?)

Initially, I was disappointed.  The beginning of this book was SO slow going, I was not looking forward to having to plow through it. About midway, it picked up, though, and became quite good.

I appreciated the medical history. I appreciated the suspense.  One thing that I thought could have been better was the use of the same Bible story numerous times throughout the book.  I understand where the author was going with this; however, I think his point could have been made better had he used more than the single example.

This was an ok book.  I have favorite authors and while he is not one of them, I would read another of his titles if it became available to me.  I try to keep an open mind and read at least two or three books from an author before deciding whether or not to pursue additional titles.  That being said, those that don’t know much about Christianity or how to be saved would probably really appreciate this book.

I give this book 3.5 stars out of 5.

I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review.

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London 1887 combined with the Wild, Wild West of Buffalo Bill Cody fame, this book had me laughing from the beginning. 

Young Charlotte is eager to make her “unofficial debut” into London society.  As an American with a prominent old English family, Charlotte is hopeful that her training in etiquette will shortly pay off. The English perspective on American woman was daunting.

According to American-married-to Brit Jennie Jerome Churchill (Lady Randolph Churchill), “In England, the American woman was looked upon as a strange and abnormal creature with habits and manner something between a red Indian and a Gaiety Girl. Anything of an outlandish nature might be expected of her.”

Charlotte had her work cut out for her.  As things went from bad to worse, partly helped along by family friend Colonel William F. Cody and his travelling show, Charlotte is recalled back to Colorado by her father after a series of unfortunate events involving Viscount Alexander Hambly.

The beginning is rich with antics that literally had me laughing out loud for much of the book. Crossing two continents and slightly more than 4 years, these characters had me thinking about them even after I was done reading.

My only wish was that the ending was as well-developed as the beginning. This was a fast paced read for me, and took an afternoon. Given the shorter length of the book, I thought there could have easily been a few more chapters to delve more deeply into the situation. 

I give this book 4.5 out of 5 stars, and I look forward to additional books by this author.

I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review.

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Set in Cripple Creek, Colorado, in 1896, the storyline has great potential.  New resident Ida Sinclair has moved out West to be near her two sisters.  Both sisters are recently married after having settled in town, matches helped along by the boardinghouse’s landlady.

Ida, however, has no aspirations for marriage; her sights solidly set on being a businesswoman.  To that end, she takes a job with Mollie O’Bryan, a business owner. (Historically, Mollie O’Bryan was the first woman to have an official seat on the gold mining stock exchange.)

This book was a bit short and underdeveloped for my personal liking.  While the story has a variety of characters, there was not much character development. I found the plot to be predictable overall. What was there was well written; there just wasn’t enough of it, in my opinion, to really draw you in and keep you reading.  I am a fan of shorter chapters, though, since those are good stopping points; something I found myself doing more of than usual for me while reading.

If you like shorter books with predictable plots, be sure to put this book on your list! I give it 3 stars out of 5; not a great book, but not bad, either.

I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review.

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