Most of the action in this book occurs on a riverboat in 1867. Through Graysons wonderful descriptions, we learn a great deal about the people and ships that plowed the Mississippi & Missouri Rivers.
Our hero, Chase Hardesty, is called to the home of Commodore James Rossiter, owner of the shipping line. Chase is mostly self-educated and has realistic expectations of his future. Suddenly, the Commodore offers him the captaincy, and the chance to OWN the newest steamboat of the line, the Andromeda. For this stupendous opportunity, all he has to do is marry the commodores daughter!
Chase is no dummy; he knows there has to be a catch. He agrees to meet with Ann Rossiter, the daughter. Chase realizes that Ann is pregnant and unmarried. During that day and time, it was a serious problem. After their discussion, Chase assures Ann that he will not accept the commodores offer. However, Anns step-father soon announces that she will marry Chase the next day! Ann feels betrayed by yet another man.
After the marriage, Chase gets ready to ship out. Imagine his shock when Ann boards the Andromeda and insists on accompanying Chase. She takes over the captains quarters and Chase joins his officers.
I certainly didnt expect Ann to join her husband; she really wasnt happy with him. Over the ensuing weeks and months, the reader comes to understand why Chases company was more acceptable than her step-fathers.
When Ann meets Chases family, she sees a different side of the man and it gives her pause (His parents and 11 remaining kids live along Chases route on the river). When Chases father makes a caustic remark about Chase selling himself for the ship suddenly, you realize something else will happen.
Ann is no pampered hot-house plant; she takes on baking duties and helps on board. She even mends the sailors shirts. Slowly, things start to change between the couple. This is a fast-paced book of 460+ pages. It captures your attention quickly and keeps it! This is my first book by this author; it wont be my last!