The McLain brothers decide that one of them needs to get married. They decide this based on the fact they don't like their cooking and their place hasn't been cleaned since their mothers death 3 years ago. To determine who will have to wed they decide to draw straws, with the short straw having to find a bride. Luke draws the short straw and the next weekend both he and Daniel go to church to let Luke find an “acceptable woman”.
Eleanor has lived with her aunt and uncle since her father's death. Basically she has been the brunt of her cousin's jokes and made to “earn her keep”. But, for some reason Luke is drawn to this short plain woman, with a spark in her eyes.
Much to the surprise of everyone Luke asks Eleanor to marry him, passing over the high strung ‘beautiful' younger cousin. While this isn't a marriage built on love Eleanor still holds onto the hope that her husband will grow to love her and any children they have. There are a few adjustments that have to be made with Eleanor living on the ranch. One of the first things she notices is that all the men have apparently forgotten they are human and eat like starving wolves. She puts up with this and other behavior until the night she finds out she is wed due to the “loss of a straw draw”. Then ‘off come the gloves' and she kicks her husband out of her bed, whips the hands into shape and starts to do things her way. Eventually her husband sees the light and starts to woo her as he should have in the first place, bring her flowers and a kitten for a start. How they come back together is the rest of the book.
This report prepared by Tanya