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Heaven in West Texas Mass Market Paperback – November 21, 1996
The Amazon Book Review
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When he wakes up, Joshua West knows he is dead. He is given a job to do on earth and he is not too sure about it. He is to help Abigail Grier, the woman who refused to go away with him. Abigail is in charge of running the ranch because her father is sick. There is a dangerous drought in west Texas, and Abby's property has the only water source available for miles around. Josh decides to haunt Abby to spite her for not going away with him. But later, at home, Abby is at the well and she pours water over herself, and while Josh is admiring the beautiful sight before him, Abby is pushed into the well. Josh saves her and he realizes that Abby is in danger so he reveals himself to her. Abby is shocked and isn't sure how to deal with Joshua, after all, he left her then died, and now he's back, but he's dead! Abby has two suitors who propose marriage and Josh feels jealous, but she knows all they want is her water to save their cattle, so she refuses them. Then harmful things begin to happen on the ranch. Joshua suspects one of her suitors and suggests she marry the other, but Abby declines. Abby and Josh spend time together talking and touching because all the love and feelings they once had for each other are still there. They come to realize that there was miscommunication between them when Josh asked her to go away with him. Josh exposes the culprit responsible for the strange occurrences and before he is called back, Josh makes love with Abby. When she wakes up, he is gone. Abby goes outside and sees two miracles! One is that it is finally raining - can you guess the other? I couldn't tell right off the bat what era this story is taking place in - Josh is told to think of himself as a pinch hitter, and there is reference to the war, but which one? And it was confusing to me whether or not Abby and Josh had lovers in the true sense of the word while he was alive. Other than that, this was a great read.Susan Kay Law writes with humor! The dialogue between her characters is witty and sexy! There is a mystery that will keep you guessing till the very end and a heavenly romance that will keep you entertained! Thanks to Ms. Law, these delightful characters both find a bit of Heaven In West Texas!Gloria Miller -- Copyright © 1994-97 Literary Times, Inc. All rights reserved -- From Literary Times
From the Publisher
In this enchanting angel romance, a roving cowboy is sent back to earth to watch over the woman who once stole his heart.
Top customer reviews
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Love from above...
Joshua West had been a lot of things--a lover, a drifter, a soldier, a cowboy. What he'd never been before was dead, and he wasn't too crazy about it. Especially when he found out he was assigned to the very last thing on heaven or earth he wanted to do: watch over the woman who had jilted him while he was alive.
Abigail Grier had an ailing father, a rebellious brother, and a ranch on the verge of bankruptcy. What she needed was a guardian angel or a knight in shining armor. When Josh held her in his arms again she realized that heaven was within her grasp.
And my review:
I've read some of Susan Kay Law's later books (MARRY ME, THE BAD MAN'S BRIDE), so I decided to give HEAVEN IN WEST TEXAS a try. This is one of her earlier books, published in 1997, and goes to show just how much an author's writing can improve and mature over the years.
There was a lot to like in this book. I felt that the paranormal aspect of it was handled quite well; interesting and believable without being too heavy-handed on cosmic stuff. Also, the author has a good feel of history, and painted a vivid picture of ranch life in the late 1800s without getting too "textbook" in her writing. One complaint here, though: I would have liked if this book had stated the year, as it took me a little while to place just which war the book kept refering to (the American Civil war, as it turns out).
I really liked the heroine. She was strong and proud without being shrewish or stupidly stubborn. That's a difficult balance to manage, so I applaud the author for a job well done. I also found myself liking the hero. I wasn't sure if I would, as I don't have much liking for the "love 'em and leave 'em" type, but he was so much more than that.
However, I felt that their previous relationship wasn't explored very deeply, and for a couple who had once been lovers, there wasn't all that much heat or chemistry between them. Not that the author didn't try to put it there; but I just didn't feel it they way I felt the "spark" between the characters in some of her other books. I felt that this story was a bit more focused on the heroine's other problems, like trying to keep her ranch going, caring for a father suffering from Alzheimer's (though no one knew what to call the disease back then), the drought, the villians. All of these other plots seemed to get more "screen time" than the romance did. I would have liked to see the romance developed a little bit more. I wanted it to really engage my emotions, and it just didn't. I also felt that a lot of the author's trademark humor was missing in this novel.
I recommend this if you're already a fan of the author. If you haven't tried Susan Kay Law before, I suggest picking up one of her later books instead, like MARRY ME or THE BAD MAN'S BRIDE, as those novels do a better job of showcasing the author's talent. HEAVEN IN WEST TEXAS is an enjoyable, quick read (less than 300 pages), but not a story for your keeper shelf.