I've been reading Lori Copeland for many years. I think she is a fine writer and has plenty of experience. This novel illustrates her story telling ability very well. The story premise is unique, but just a bit unbelievable.

Story flow is good. Nothing bogs down the rhythm and pace of the story except when a character steps out of character. I'll explain that in a moment. The setting is great. The period of history is not explained until well into the story, but that doesn't matter until the plot twists, and the reader needs to know why the gold is so important to Creed. That is actually done very well. You get the feel for the period right off when the girls are rescued from a wagon by men on horseback.

We have a con artist white girl (believable), and a stoic Indian (believable). Creed, the Indian, is a man of very few words (believable). But then the Indian goes in shops and saloons and other places where Indians were not usually allowed without anyone raising an eyebrow. That isn't so believable.

There are several places in this story that feel contrived and forced, such as the time Annie-Marie goes out into a blizzard. She shows a lot more sense than that early on in the novel. She grew up in the region, so she knows blizzards and their hazards. She knows better. There is no real reason why she does this except for her pique at the Indian girl, Berry Woman. It would be different if she were running a fever, or had drunk some loco juice. Women do silly things sometimes, but this is one thing I take great exception to, why have a character do something out of character in order to contrive a sudden caring in the heart of the Indian for the silly woman? That isn't believable to me.
The dialogue in this book leaves a LOT to be desired. It is stilted, and reads like not-very-good-actors on a stage. I have not read a Lori Copeland book that had this problem. So this was an unexpected surprise.

All things added together thought, the story and the character development mean more to a story that a few stilted lines of dialogue, and there are some very cute situations, so I give this 3 of 5 stars.


From bestselling author Lori Copeland (more than 3 million books in print) comes the inspiring sequel to Sisters of Mercy Flats.

The three wily and beautiful McDougal sisters can swindle a man faster than it takes to lasso a calf. But their luck is running out, and they’re about to be hauled off to jail. When the wagon carrying them falls under attack, each sister is picked up by a different man.

Anne-Marie, the middle sister, is saved by Creed Walker, a Crow warrior. It’s loathing at first sight, but with bandits on their tail and a cache of gold to hide, Creed and Anne-Marie need each other. Will they learn to put aside their differences and trust each other—and God? And can their growing faith turn their lives around?

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