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Love on the Range (Love Inspired Historical) Mass Market Paperback – April 3, 2012
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"Nelson takes an exciting look at a time of sorrow, but also hope, in America, with a heroine struggling to respect her upbringing while embracing her independence." ****1/2, Susan Mobley, RT Reviews
About the Author
Jessica Nelson's heart is filled with romantic stories, her shelves are loaded with chocolate and she's always longing for one more cup of Starbucks. She believes in a passionate God who woos people to himself with loving tenderness. When she's not chasing her little boys around the house, she's writing inspirational romances.
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In 1918, the horrors of WWI raged alongside another deadly war: Spanish influenza. To escape the virus, wealthy Bostonian Gracelyn Riley's is sent by her family to live with Uncle Lou in the Oregon desert. A young socialite and suffragist with dreams of becoming a reporter, Gracelyn doesn't mind living in Oregon, because she'll taste independence from her parents and become a serious reporter. Or she will, once she lands an exclusive interview with the mysterious hero, Striker.
Gracie's endeavors to find and interview Striker are obstructed by ranch hand Trevor Cruz, a strong man of few words. He clearly knows something about Striker, but he avoids answering most of Gracie's questions. He may be attracted to her, but her snooping will get her into deep trouble if she's not careful. Trevor protects her, but he's determined to protect his heart as well--from her and from her God.
At first, Gracie comes off rather strong-headed and pampered, but she's utterly likable. As she grows through the story, she discovers the significance of honest work and true friendship and I rooted for her all the way. Her concern for Trevor's lack of faith is touching, but Trevor's heart can't be fixed easily. Like most of the real world's problems, Trevor's issues run deep.
A delightful story about God's redeeming love, romance, and adventure, Love on the Range is a perfect summer read.
Trevor is also an intriguing character, a hero with great balance of inner angst, flaws, and noble strengths. I enjoyed getting to know Gracie and Trevor and watching the way each of their lives were changed by their unlikely friendship--which included a "proper" but healthy dose of chemistry. I enjoy a love story in which people not only find love, but also find things like healing, grace, courage, and deeper faith in God. Overall, this was a very sweet, enjoyable romance.
Love on the Range was a nice, one-time read that gave a very interesting view of ranching in the early 1900s when hoop skirts and horses were being replaced with short dresses and automobiles. I really enjoyed a peek at what ranch-life was like for people during this changing time in history.
Gracelyn was such a fun character! She had this bubbly way about her that I found instantly attractive and sweet and because she was such a talkative type...it led to some humorous scenes that I couldn't help laughing over. Trevor made for a good hero--kinda quiet, but still super-sweet and gentle. His proposal scene at the ending was great--really loved it!
And, of course, the mix of Striker, and who he is, adds a lot of drama and intrigue into the plot. If I had to name one thing, however, that caused me not to completely enjoy this book, it'd probably be the plot. It just seemed to take a while for anything to happen. All the action took place within the last few chapters, and before that the story is just slowly building. But that's just me. :-)
The writing was good! Very crisp and clean and the descriptions of the Oregon territory around Gracelyn was refreshingly vivid. One or two action scene I felt rather "jerky", but fun to read nonetheless. Love on the Range is a very nice read from a promising debut author! I look forward to seeing what she comes out with next.
I received this book from the author. It was not required that I give a positive review, but solely to express my own thoughts and opinions of this book, which I have done.