Saturday, March 10, 2012

Book Review: Blue Moon Promise

Lucy Marsh hasn't had an easy life. Her mother died when she was very small, and now her father too has died, her stepmother has run off, and Lucy is left to care for her two young siblings, Jed and Eileen. With their landlord threatening eviction and an unknown danger lurking in the background, Lucy doesn't know where to turn for help. Help shows up unexpectedly, however, in the form of Henry Stanton, an old friend of her father's from Texas. He has a surprising offer for Lucy--a proxy marriage to his son, Nate. Mr. Stanton believes Nate needs a wife and that he's never going to get around to courting someone on his own. In spite of many misgivings, Lucy feels she has no choice but to accept this offer, as she needs some way to provide for her brother and sister.

Upon discovering what his dad has done, Nate Stanton is not too pleased. To be suddenly saddled with a wife--especially a tiny little thing like Lucy--and two children into the bargain, wasn't exactly in line with his plans for his life. However, Nate is an honorable man and eventually decides that the best thing to do is try to make things work. As for Lucy, she has much to learn about being a rancher's wife, but she's willing to give it a go! But even in Texas, the unknown danger continues to stalk them. When Lucy discovers a bunch of rare silver coins sewn into the hem of her best dress, the mystery begins to unravel. Do the coins have some connection with her father's death and her stepmother's desertion? Will Jed be able to remember what happened on that tragic night? How does Lucy's extended family--living in the same Texas town--fit into the picture? And will Nate and Lucy grow to love each other and accept their new life as a family?

Blue Moon Promise was my first Colleen Coble book, and I enjoyed it. It was a fun, historical Western romance with a good bit of mystery thrown in. I did feel that some parts of the plot were a little bit far-fetched . . . such as the time when Lucy faints, gets scared by an Indian, and falls and dislocates her elbow, all in the same day (and then gets bitten by a rattlesnake in the next chapter) . . . but the book was overall a fun read, and to be honest, I don't really expect a completely believable plot in this type of book. :) Not to say that it was poorly written or that there was no substance, because that wasn't the case--the writing was good and kept my interest, and I found myself really relating to Lucy. She was constantly trying to "measure up" to prove to Nate that she was the wife he needed, when he hadn't even set a standard for her to measure up to! And she also had control issues . . . learning to let go and trust God was a major theme in the book. Overall this was a clean read, no intimate scenes, although there was some discussion between Nate and Lucy about when to make their marriage "real." Having a little mystery thrown in helped keep my interest, and the plot twists and turns were fun. I really liked Nate and Lucy--they seemed like very real, "flawed" characters (like we all are!). I give Blue Moon Promise 4 out of 5 stars.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through theBookSneeze book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."

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