Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Recent Reads

Still working on my RWA post but until then......

Her Wyoming Man by Cheryl St. John

Why this one: I inhale her books when they come out. I have ever since her first book Rain Shadow

Steam Level: Well, since there is a major heat wave going on, the fact that this book isn’t what I would call steamy is just fine.

Blurb: Courtesan Ella Reed escapes dangerous city life to rural Wyoming and says "I do" to a marriage of convenience! But she may not live the life of a respectable woman for long if she can't keep her past -- and her heart -- under lock and key.

For a self-made man with political aspirations, love is trivial in a paper marriage. Nathan Lantry needs a wife to secure his election and manage his rowdy little boys. Yet he can't stop wanting more from his irresistible new bride. Then her secrets start to unravel....

My Thoughts: There is a thread at AAR about heroines who are prostitutes and since I did a couple of posts on this topic, I was thinking of it when I finished reading this book, Her Wyoming Man by Cheryl St. John. I’ve loved Ms. St. John since her very first book and gobble up her newest releases as soon as they come out and this one was no exception. Since Lorraine Heath left the Old West and departed to England, Cheryl St. John is my mind, THEE Western write who writes the most poignant stores

As the tread at AAR suggests, the heroine is a prostitute in the old west. She has run away from the brothel and agrees to be a mail order bride without informing her bridegroom Nathan Lantry of her past.

I get that this kind of heroine isn’t for everyone and I can respect that. But for any on the fence on this kind of heroine, or those contemplating trying one, they don’t come much better than Ella. Ms. St. John, as she has with so many of her heroines, writes Ella in such a way that she will break your heart. She makes her past so tragic, and she is still so vulnerable. But never does the reader sit in judgment on her. It’s a case of it was what it was and now she has an opportunity to make a new life for herself. She feels bad about not telling Nathan about her past and doesn’t really consider the consequences she’s so desperate to escape her past.

And Nathan makes for quite an endearing hero. He didn’t stand out for me as much as Ella, but I really did enjoy how considerate he was of Ella and how concerned he was that he not make the same mistakes with Ella.

There’s nothing big or showy about this story. It’s a gentle book about how a young woman struggles to overcome her past with the help of a gentle and loving man.

Grade: 4.5 out of 5


nath said...

I think Hils read it and really, really enjoyed it as well :)

Glad that it measures up to your expectations. I'm super fond of this type of heroine... but I can also understand why some really enjoy it :)

Wendy said...

There are exceptions (the hero from Joe's Wife leaps to mind) - but I think St. John's strength is really in her heroines. She writes really great heroines with lots of interesting baggage. Probably why I like her books so much! LOL

I read this one post-RWA as well. My review is going up over at Sybil's, uh sometime soon-ish. I had quibbles, but I liked it too. Nowhere near my fave by St. John, but a good, solid read.

Hilcia said...

Kristie, as Nath says, I enjoyed this book too. I also liked the way St. John portrayed Ella in this story, but then I also liked Nathan and how he fell for her. This book was a treat to read, just like all the books I've read by St. John so far.

Leslie said...

I'm hoping to get it this weekend. I really love her writing and seeing another positive review for this just makes me want it that much more!

Cheryl St.John said...

Thank you for the review, Kristie!


Kristie (J) said...

Cheryl: Thank YOU for writing such and enjoyable book *g*

Leslie: I love her writing too. And what's good is so many are available as ebooks now so there is no reason why newer readers can't get her books. She writes such wonderful Westerns doesn't she?

Hilcia - what I said to Leslie - I really do love all her books. I thought she handled the situation with Ella. And yes - after his initial misgivings, Nathan really came through didn't he?

Wendy: I'll have to keep an eye out for your review. It wasn't my favourite - I think Joe's Wife will always be my sentimental favourite, but this one was a wonderful addition and it's a Western!!!!

Nath: *laughing* Did you mean not super fond of this type of heroine? Ms. St John really did a good job with Ella. She didn't make her a martyr, but as a reader, we really do feel for her.

nath said...

LOl, yeah, I meant NOT ^_^; I think once I've decided whether I enjoy Ms St John's writing, I'll either be reading this or not LOL.