Saturday, October 20, 2012
Dawn Comes Early
Thomas Nelson, 2012
Adult Christian Historical Romance
Source: Received an ARC through Amazon Vine in exchange for an honest review.
Having read Brownley's previous series Rocky Creek Romance, I knew that I enjoyed her writing and was eager to pick up another romance set in the West. This time we journey to the Arizona Territory in 1895, getting a glimpse into ranch life. Although I don't usually seek out non-Regency romances, I will admit to a fondness for these interconnected trilogies.
Our heroine is Boston-bred Kate Tenney, disgraced novelist whose latest book was banned by the prudish Boston watchdogs and who worked hard every day of her life to be able to afford an education. She travels out west for the opportunity to become an heiress to a cattle ranch; the main condition is to remain forever unmarried, something that does not sound difficult due to Kate's abysmal examples of parents. All that she has seen is bad marriages where the men don't stick around and why would she want that?
Upon arrival, Kate is assaulted by an outlaw, saved by the swoony hero, and begins her much more difficult than expected life at the ranch. But she has tenacity and is determined not to let anything get in the way. Not even the very upstanding Luke Adams, blacksmith and all-around good guy, who doesn't see why a lady of learning would be interested in a plainspoken man like him.
I would (and in fact did) categorize this as a romance and yet there isn't that much interaction between the two. Immediately there is a frisson between the two but they don't share many conversations. They barely get to know each other. We spend more time following Kate's rejuvenated writing career, a subplot with the aforementioned outlaw, and some focusing on Luke's aunts, who are admittedly a kick. One decides to put the passion in her marriage and ends up thinking her husband is two-timing her, which doesn't sound funny but it was.
Overall: Although I would have liked more romance and more discussion of faith, this book hit all the right beats for me. I'm very excited for second book Waiting for Morning.