Dell, March 2001, 6.99, 337 pp.
In Amarillo, still hurting from the murder of his father at the hands of a Blackthorne, teenager Luke Creed accuses Clay Blackthorne of stealing deadly VX-nerve gas mines. Besides the potential danger of the gas, Clay's twin brother, Texas Ranger Owen, has an added incentive to finding the culprit who murdered a peer.
Not long after his public condemnation of Clay, Luke vanishes. Owen wonders if Luke knows more about the missing VX-nerve gas than he said during his mouthy accusations. Luke's older sister Bayleigh refuses to help her family's enemy when Owen turns to her. Instead, she offers a deal in which she accompanies him as he searches for her sibling. On the road, they fall in love, but besides the family feud to contend with, it appears as if law enforcement types from the National, Guard, Texas Rangers, or the Feds may be behind the theft.
As with THE COWBOY and “The Captive Hearts” series, the acrimonious feud between the Blackthorne and Creed clans serve as the impetus for the fast-moving novel THE TEXAN. The story line is filled with action, adventure, and an exciting contemporary romance. Luke and Bayleigh have a lot to overcome besides family problems including the danger of an unknown assailant before they can forge a lasting relationship. The characters remain strong and Joan Johnston's myriad of fans will feel fully entertained and want to read the next feuding novel, THE LONER.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner