Although I love nearly all of Connie Willis' books, I hadn't been that impressed by the other two I've read which she wrote in collaboration with Cynthia Felice: "Light Raid," which was entertaining enough, but not exceptional, and "Water Witch," which was too much of a romance novel for my taste. "Promised Land" is also a romance novel. I got the impression that it might even have originally been conceived of as a Wild West kinda romance, and then the authors decided to put a sci-fi veneer over the story. Delanna is a city girl who's been at school off-planet. But when her mother dies, she comes back to her frontier planet to liquidate her mother's farm and collect her inheritance. She barely recognizes the hayseed hick who comes to meet her, whom she knew as a little girl, but she takes an instant dislike to him. It's a complete shock to her to discover, that under planetary laws designed to protect family homesteads, she's married to him, and is legally unable to sell her land unless she lives on it - with him - for a year. She has no other assets, so she's forced to travel out to the land, which is literally in the middle of nowhere.
of course, a couple of other guys have romantic designs on Delanna, and there's a few light subplots here and there, but mainly Delanna becomes guilty that her mother always sent her money that she spent on parties and fancy clothes, learns to value the fruit of her own labors, falls in love with the hick, comes to appreciate the Simple Life, and decides to stay on the farm. Ugh, ugh, ugh. Puh-leeze.
Good book. Connie Willis is great!
This is a western romance with a science fiction veneer. That means there will be no surprises, pretty much all the stereotypes will be hit, and there will be no real depth to the story. It's reasonably written, though the main characters, Delanna and Sonny, alternate between great intelligence about everything else and incredible stupidity about each other too frequently.
If you're a big romance fan, you might like it, but if you're a science fiction reader and you've enjoyed Willis's solo books, then you will be seriously disappointed by this book.