Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Dawn Comes Early

Disgraced dime novelist Kate Tenney fled the city that banned her latest novel for the emptiness of the desert. Answering an ad to be "heiress" to a vast cattle ranch in the Arizona Territory, Kate hopes ranching turns out to be as romantic as she portrayed it in her novels.
But what awaits her is a life harder than the one she just left. There is no room for mistakes on a working cattle ranch, and Kate is ill-prepared for her new life. She quickly learns that dawn comes early. But she is tenacious.
Having been abandoned by a string of men, Kate has no intention of ever marrying. But she didn't expect to meet Luke Adams, either. Luke awakens feelings inside Kate she doesn't recognize, and his steady presence is a constant distraction. She has only written about love in the past, never known it herself. But her feelings for Luke stand in the way of all she has to gain if she is chosen as the heir.
Perhaps God brought Kate to the barrenness of the desert to give new life to her jaded heart.

My Take: This was a truly fun read. Those who read my reviews most often know how I love realism and this book had a genuine feel of community to it. I didn't feel as if Kate & Luke's story was the only one going on (with everyone else there just as filler) but truly like we were seeing life through their eyes. The emphasis was on them, but the other characters were moving forward in their lives as well. It made the story more three dimensional.

There was tension, action, romance, and comic relief right from the beginning. I loved Cactus Joe and thought the author was brilliant creating him as both villain and a sort of tragic clown. The whole idea of Kate being a writer of banned books was genius. It created such a buzz about her in town - and a lot of discussion that is still applicable today.

Each character felt like they had a history that was well developed and interesting. I loved getting to know them. Because of that, their actions and the story line was even more dynamic. I loved some of the choices they made - like Kate and the windmill. You have to read to know what I'm talking about. I don't want to give anything away.

The only thing I wish could have happened was more time spent between Luke and Kate. I know that was realistic for the time period though. This is one I would heartily recommend. I want to thank Thomas Nelson for providing a copy in exchange for my honest review.    

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