I grew up reading Francine Rivers’ books, my favorites being Redeeming Love and the Mark of the Lion series. So I freaked out when I saw she had a new book coming out.
I wasn’t disappointed. This western love story has a similar setting to Redeeming Love, an 1800s mining town. With two fiery main characters, rich description, and romantic tension, this story kept me wanting to read more.
Quick gist: It’s 1875. Kathryn Walsh, a well-to-do Boston suffragette who’s not afraid to speak her mind, is banished from her life of luxury and sent to Calvada, a rough-and-tumble mining town full of brothels and bars. The uncle she never knew has died, and she’s been sent to claim the inheritance: a closed-down newspaper office and a worthless mine. There she meets Matthias Beck, a former Union soldier and now a saloon/hotel owner who respected Kathryn’s uncle. But it’s a man’s town, and a lawless one, and Matthias decides to try and keep Kathryn out of trouble.
Easier said than done. Kathryn’s fiery spirit matches that of her late uncle, and her efforts to improve the town, as well as her decision to start up the newspaper again, pit her against the town’s most powerful men, including Matthias. But even as Kathryn vows she’ll never hand over her freedom by marrying, she and Matthias discover they have more in common than they first thought.
Thoughts: I loved how Rivers makes two characters who dislike each other eventually fall in love. She does it in such a natural, realistic way. I didn’t think the last few chapters were necessary, but overall it was a great read. It’s categorized as Christian fiction because of who the author is, but it’s more of a sweet western romance, if anything. If you’re a Francine Rivers fan, don’t miss this one.
Really grateful to Tyndale House Publishers and NetGalley for my gifted e-copy.
Photo credit: Annie Spratt
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