Leisure, Apr 2004, 6.99, 357 pp.
With the Confederacy defeated, Brandon Caruthers returns to his Kentucky home River Trails to see it in ruin and the back taxes on his property makes it even more difficult for him to regain all he lost when his side went down to defeat. His former fiancÚ dumped him while he fought and married into a pro-Union banking family. To add insult to injury, the former Reba Cunningham now Wilcox pays the back taxes on Brandon's estate to punish her ex.
In 1867, Brandon leaves his American troubles behind to go to London as a Baron seeking a wealthy heiress to finance his efforts to regain control of River Trails. He cuts a deal with widow Miranda Auburn in which he will marry her daughter Lorilee in exchange for her loaning him the capital he needs to buy back his family property. Everything is perfect except for one problem; he has fallen love with the older Auburn female.
Though some of the intrigue subplots seem unnecessary and Reba is drawn too nasty to matter, readers will appreciate this historical romance between an older wealthy woman and a younger needing cash male. The story line is fast-paced, but at its best when the triangle interacts even with Lorilee knowing she and Brand will not suit. A kidnapping and the outrageous behavior of Reba takes away from a powerful post American Civil War love story.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner