Once a Rebel

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Once a Rebel

Book 1 in the Orphan Train series

Galen Stewart hasn’t had the ideal life that you would hope a child would have. Her parents gave her away while still keeping their two sons. She went to a foster family and there life became even more unbearable for her because her foster father raped her. Then, by accident, she killed him and didn’t know what to do so she decided to run away.

By the age of fifteen, Galen is working as a saloon girl and is tricking her johns into drinking a special tonic she offers them. The tonic knocks them out and then she steals her dues. Doing this one too many times causes her to be on the run again.

Joshua Hassett, a bounty hunter and former Sheriff, is on the hunt for Galen to seek out the justice she deserves for all her crimes. Ironically, when he finds her he also wants her to answer some questions in order to help him find out what happened to his sister just a few short years ago. Never does he expect to become smitten with the very girl he’s hunting. But once she explains her past to him, he realizes that they need to clear her name of any wrong doings she’s been accused of committing.

Can they clear her name in time before someone else finds her? Is it wise to get involved with each other under these circumstances?

Ms. Ashton has penned yet another emotionally gripping novel that just takes your breath away. It’s hard not to run through different emotions while you’re reading this story. I felt bad for Galen because of the terrible life she was thrown into at such a young age. No child should suffer as she had and I had hoped that Joshua could help clear her name for her before it was too late. If you’re looking for a story that will grab you from the very first page and take you on a roller coaster ride, you have found the perfect one that will do just that. Ms. Ashton is an author that definitely knows how to entertain her readers and makes them walk away feeling satisfied when the story ends. Well done!

Book Blurb for Once a Rebel

Raped at 14, Galen Stewart awakens from a state of shock to find her foster father’s blood on her hands. Determined to stay two steps ahead of the man’s politician brother who’d rather see her dead than reveal his darkest secret, she’s forced to use the only gift Fate has seen fit to bestow upon her. Hiding beneath an array of identities, Galen accepts a station at whatever town saloon she may happen upon and works the oldest profession in the book. The mere thought of the carnal act launches horrid memories and leads her to concoct a laudanum-laced tonic that sends her ‘Johns’ into a slumberous stupor while she plunders their pockets. It seems like the perfect plan…until two of her patrons die of overdoses. To make matters worse, someone has gone to a lot of trouble to frame her for murders she didn’t commit, but who?

Six years later and still no leads, sheriff turned bounty-hunter Joshua Hassett takes matters into his own hands. Besides the fact that he's been hired by the farmer’s ambitious brother, Joshua has his own reasons for wanting to find the elusive waif. When a surprising clue sends him on the hunt for a raven-haired harlot, Joshua’s world is turned upside down by an auburn-haired angel working one of the saloons. When she’s accused of murder, he sets out to prove her innocence and soon finds himself entangled in her web of lies. Once Joshua discovers the truth, will he be able to choose between his heart and his oath to uphold the law?

Night Owl Reviews Oct, 2010 5.00