Olivia Stewart risks everything to accomplish her dreams. She’s tired of being pitied because she’s been jilted, tired of teaching other people’s children without any of her own. When she signs with a matrimonial agency, a letter from Jamie Fraser sounds perfect. A widower with two young children will give her a head start on the family she’s determined to have. But Colorado holds surprises for Olivia that endanger her goals and even her life.
Rancher Jamie Fraser is shocked to learn his mother has written for a mail-order bride for him. He has two children and no plan to marry again. Ever! His late wife taught him women can’t be trusted. Even his beloved mother isn’t above tricking her sons to achieve her heartfelt ambitions. Now he’s stuck with a wife he didn’t want—a stubborn woman bent on changing his home and his life.
Can two strong people at odds achieve happiness? Angel Springs, Colorado is a small town that inspires big dreams. Olivia and Jamie just might find their dreams meld to form a powerful and enduring love.
***I received an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts are 100% my own.***
The book opens up with a warning that the prologue is the same for the four brothers. They’re all standing around the barn helping their mom out and waiting on the ranch foreman to come back from town. When he gets back in the middle of a snow storm, he’s not alone. In the buggy are four women…women their mother had hoodwinked into being their mail-order brides. This particular story is about Jamie, the eldest son, and Olivia, a school teacher from the Chicago area.
Jamie doesn’t want a wife, he had one of those and other than his two children, he was woefully unimpressed with women. Olivia just wanted to be a partner and a wife and someday a mother. The fact that she got children right away made her happy. Until she met them. She realized that Jamie needed her more than he realized.
I liked Olivia. She was independent and spunky and wasn’t afraid of hard work. She also really cared about Jamie’s children, even though she didn’t know them. I liked Jamie ok, he was too hot and cold for me. What I did like was the reality that these women married these men, sight unseen, and their were expected to do wifely things. And Olivia was too pragmatic to shy away from that part of the deal, even though she wasn’t experienced in that regard. And it wasn’t written as though there were fireworks either. She had to lay down law on her expectations, which I really appreciate. So I really appreciate that nod to reality. Overall, the story was a good one. I liked the epilogue. We got to see where everyone was even if we didn’t get their stories.
Ms. Clemmons writes a good tale. It’s light and not too long. Something that could be read in an afternoon with some tea and a blanket. I also liked that she created characters that were willing to tough it out and weren’t awfully wishy-washy. Granted, Jamie had issues with trust and blew hot and cold, they were also needing to learn one another, and THAT wasn’t glossed over either. So though it was a romance, and it isn’t meant to BE real life, I appreciate the nods to reality in this book. So would I recommend it? Yes, I would. It’s a more believable tale than a lot of books out there.
Caroline Clemmons is an Amazon bestselling author of historical and contemporary western romances whose books have garnered numerous awards. Her latest release is GABE KINCAID, book four of her popular Kincaid series. A frequent speaker at conferences and seminars, she has taught workshops on characterization, point of view, and layering a novel.
Caroline is a member of Romance Writers of America, Yellow Rose Romance Writers, From The Heart Romance Writers, and Hearts Through History Romance Writers. Her latest publications include the acclaimed historical Men of Stone Mountain series: BRAZOS BRIDE, HIGH STAKES BRIDE, and BLUEBONNET BRIDE and the audiobooks of BRAZOS BRIDE and HIGH STAKES BRIDE.
Caroline and her husband live in the heart of Texas cowboy country with their menagerie of rescued pets. Prior to writing full time, her jobs included stay-at-home mom (her favorite), secretary, newspaper reporter and featured columnist, assistant to the managing editor of a psychology journal, bookkeeper for the local tax assessor and–for a short and fun time–an antique dealer. When she’s not indulging her passion for writing, Caroline enjoys reading, travel, antiquing, genealogy, painting, getting together with friends, and enjoying watching the birds, butterflies, and squirrels wandering through her back yard. Find her on her blog, website, Facebook, Twitter, Shelfari, Goodreads, and Pinterest.