All the Women in Pearl

Sequel to All the Trees in Pearl.

Which is worse?  A stubborn man who is certain he understands things or a stubborn woman who is just as certain that he doesn't?  At times the romance between John and C.C. was a tug of war.  He'll say 'do this' and she'll say 'and I want to do this' to which he'll refuse, but give in to.

I felt bad for C.C., for the situation her feckless mother had put her into and the acceptance of her fate before running into John.  Its not that she gave in, precisely, but more that she was biding her time.  John meanwhile is busy just trying to keep things running while her brothers are off doing their thing when she happens into his path.

The chemistry is quick (aided by the fact they knew each other a decade before) and decisive.  Despite either of their intentions things escalate rapidly until John is busy trying to figure out just how far a 'compromise' he can make it before he feels a complete cad (since his plans do not include staying in Pearl).

The secondary story, of C.C. returning home and her stepbrother's cousin making her life miserable, takes up a fair amount of the time.  If they're not discussing ways to be rid of that pest, they're dealing with him.  As to be expected in a romance, the good guys win out, but not before the bad guy gives them all a good run.  The companion to this, All the Trees in Pearl is about C.C.'s brother Ethan and his marriage to wife Margaret, which is only briefly covered.  It's not necessary to the plot of the story however.

Book Blurb for All the Women in Pearl

Line: Lawless - 19th Century Western
Book Length: Novella
C.C. Carver’s honeysuckle kiss has haunted John Raincrow for more than ten years. He would recognize her anywhere—even in a dusty saloon, dressed in a harlot’s costume. She’s returned to Colorado too late though, and while he’ll see her back to Pearl safe and sound, he will not let himself know the woman she has become. Not even if that woman kneels between his knees, moans into his mouth or whispers “please”.

Night Owl Reviews Sep, 2009 3.50