Leisure, Jun 2004, 6.99, 368 pp.
In the 1880s when her dad dies, Casey Hamilton realizes that she and her siblings have only one place to go. They head west to Texas to claim the ranch her uncle left her though Casey knows nothing about the spread.
How nothing Casey knows about ranching hits home when she arrives at the Spanish Slur Ranch. Half-breed Gabe Slaughter offers to run the spread for her in exchange for room and board. A desperate Casey agrees. As other interests try to drive the easterner and her brood home, Casey and Gabe fall in love, but he feels she could do better than him. Casey thinks otherwise and plans to prove to her beloved that his heart contains the right stuff as far as she is concerned though others agree with Gabe and will resort to violence in the hopes of driving the Hamiltons out of Texas.
Few authors do nineteenth century Texas romances (see the Half-Moon Ranch romance - MOON RACER) as well as Constance O'Banyon consistently does. Her latest tale is an engaging tale starring two individuals hoping to survive the present with love (and her ranch) as their only hope for the future. The support cast provides deep insight into the lead couple as well as a look into an interesting era when the Civil War remains a sad memory (sort of like Viet Nam) while Rangers try to bring law and order to the state. Sub-genre fans will want to RIDE THE WIND with these TEXAS PROUD characters.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner