A devoted teacher at the St. Francis Academy for Girls, Truvy Valentine is 5- foot-10, athletically gifted, politically minded, and accustomed to going unnoticed by men. Facing her 26th birthday, Truvy is teetering on the edge of old-maid status when she's suspended from the academy for teaching human sexuality to her students. She travels to Harmony, Montana, to visit a close friend over the Christmas holidays and finds herself caught up in the lives of the small-town residents and reluctantly, overpoweringly attracted to Jake Brewster, owner of Bruiser's Gymnasium and one-time world-renowned strongman.
The two seem direct opposites, but beneath Truvy's very proper exterior beats the heart of a rebel and Jake's just the man to encourage her forays into nonladylike behavior. Neither of them expects to find love, but Jake can't deny Truvy's quick wit and warm heart, and Truvy can't ignore the fact that Jake's blunt words, rough charm, and caring concern are irresistible. Will either find the courage to say "I love you" before Truvy must return to her life at the academy?
Good romantic historical fiction.
First, it is important to read the four novels of this series in order (see below). This is the absolutely wonderful story of Truvy Valentine and Jake "Bruiser" Brewster. Everything takes place in the delightfully small town of Harmony, Montana.
Truvy Valentine is a dedicated teacher of economics and the athletic coach at St. Francis Academy in Idaho. In her efforts to prepare her young charges for the world they are about to enter, Truvy makes an awful mistake. She teaches about human sexuality and gets caught by the school's director and a major benefactor. Miss Pond, the school's administrator, suggests that Truvy spend the Christmas holidays thinking about staying within the bounds of the instructional guidelines of St. Francis. She tells Tru that she will telegram her when it is safe to call Tru back to teach.
Tru is on her way to see her very-pregnant friend, Edwina Wolcott, in Montana. Instead of Tom or Edwina meeting her train, they send the man who runs the local gym, Jake Brewster. Tru is particularly unimpressed with her escort.
When Tru does not receive the desired telegram (after the Christmas holidays), she takes up the job of teaching dancing lessons for Edwina. Although Tru is a quick study, she has no idea how to teach this subject. The students just happen to be the men from Jake's gym, getting ready for an important physique competition. Jake knows much more about dancing than Tru and eventually teaches her individually prior to her teaching her dancing groups.
Historical tidbits are sprinkled through the pages and characters from previous books in this series join Tru and Jake in HEARTS. This series is a delightful group of Americana stories. 4.5 stars
Brides for All Seasons
1. Harmony (1997)
2. Hooked (1999)
3. Honey (2000)
**4. Hearts (2001)