May 5, 2014

Early Review: AN UNWILLING HUSBAND by Tera Shanley

Title: An Unwilling Husband

Author: Tera Shanley

Source: eARC from author for review


For adventurous Margaret Flemming, arrived from Boston to be with her father, the Old West town of her childhood is a far cry from the drawing rooms and balls of the high society life she’s used to. Her fancy gowns and proper manners have no place in the dusty, cruel land inhabited by Indians and rough cowboys. And her fiercely independent streak constantly gets her in trouble. When tragedy strikes, there’s only one person she can turn to--her childhood friend, Garret Shaw--but he’s disgusted with her Society ways.

With his ranch under attack from the land-grabbing Jennings, the last thing Garret needs is to be saddled with a high-falutin’ lady. Even if she is his friend’s daughter and her kind ways tug at his hardened heart. Duty to her father forces them to wed, but he knows sure as anything, when the chance comes along, she’ll go back to Boston. No matter how much he wants her, loving her is not a risk he can take.

Will Maggie choose a life of luxury and ease over struggle and hardship with an ill-mannered cowboy? Only her heart can answer.

CONTENT WARNING: A potty-mouthed proper lady, a reluctant bridegroom and all kinds of trouble.

My take...
Margaret Flemming is starting her life over and moving back to the one place she always thought of as home. Now that she is back in Texas and out from under the thumb of her hateful Aunt, she feels as if she can finally breathe and be happy. That is until her run in on day one with her childhood friend and first and only love, Garret Shaw. He makes it clear she is not welcomed here and is sure to tell her at every turn. But when sudden tragedy strikes, Maggie and Garret are forced into an arrangement that doesn't just stop at them. Life as they know it just got a whole lot harder in this Old West town. And for one of them, it just may mean a certain death.

For the first time in as long as she could remember, she could breathe.

I took my time with this one. I didn't want to rush through it and throw it in the 'read' pile I have piling up. I wanted to experience this story and I wanted to see what it felt like to live back during the Old West. I am pretty sure I have never read a book during this time before. So that was all the more reason to sit back and enjoy it. And I gotta say, I love it. I loved the 'talk' of people back then and how people had to work for their food and home. Lover of all things instant gratification? Too bad. You'd be out of luck here. And by you I mean me. It would be fun for all of 1 hour. Then I would be found in the fetal position crying for a real bath and ice cream.

Garret has his reasons for not liking Maggie any more. And they started the day she up and left him many years ago. Is the reason justified? Absolutely not. She was a child under her mother's care. But try telling that to a hurt teenage Garret who felt such a loss that day. It is going to take much time and convincing to get him to open his heart back up.

Her wardrobe would have to be adjusted, just as her soul and body would.
She'd show them she could be much more than just a proper lady.

Maggie is a firecracker. I loved her attitude and how she wouldn't let Garret find fault with her in anything. Always working as hard as she could to prove that she was sticking around for good. Even to the point of hurting herself. But if that is what it takes, she is willing to do it. She wants him and everyone else at the ranch to know she is here for the long haul.

In the end I adored the characters and their feistiness, I found the book to be enjoyable and entertaining, and I actually ended up craving more. Yes, I would love to see this world continued on. Shanley is absolutely one of my favorite new authors and it seems she can write just about anything. Be sure to pick this book up once it is out. 5 Stars!

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