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Over the past months, I’ve learned to appreciate the short stories included in an anthology. The 3 novellas included here are diverse and interesting.
THE GREAT COWBOY RACE - Georgina Gentry - 3.5 stars
This was a fun tale in spite of the fact that the story was a bit lame. The chemistry between the 2 main characters really carried the story for me.
Bostonian Henrietta Jennings is running away from a pending marriage to a man she doesn’t like. She’s trying to get to her negligent father, who happens to be away at the time of her arrival in Chadron, Nebraska. Desperate for money, she decides to disguise herself in male garb and compete in the 1000 mile horse race.
Comanche Jones has been drifting and decides it’s time to buy land and start his own ranch. Since he’s short of funds for his grand scheme, he enters the horse race.
Gentry made a mistake that many new authors seem to make; she tied up ALL the loose ends before the story ended. It made the novella seem rushed … and too neat.
WHISPERING BY MOONLIGHT - Teresa Bodwell – 3.0 stars
This is my first story by Teresa Bodwell and the story simply didn’t speak to me. Truth in point, the story left me cold. I just couldn’t get past the point where Isabelle asked Luke to spend the night with her so she could learn how to be a good whore.
It is 1862; Isabelle Milton is looking for her father when she runs out of money in Washington Territory. She finds a part-time job that plays out just before the harsh winds of winter arrive. The owners of the saloon where she works suggest to one of their customers that he hire Isabelle as a cook.
THE RELUCTANT HERO - Lorraine Heath – 5 stars
In this story, we get to watch a master at work! This is a multi-layered story beautifully told in just a few pages!
Dime novelist Andrea Jackson arrives in Gallant, Texas in 1884. Because of circumstances beyond her control, Andrea owes a large debt. The only way she can hope to pay it off is to get a new, exciting series of dime novels going . . . . Andrea needs a hero that will capture the reading public’s fancy.
Sheriff Matthew Knight is horrified by Andrea’s entreaty to use him as her hero. Eventually, Andrea’s spunk wears the man down. The give-and-take between the 2 leads adds much to the story. Enjoy!