Lettie Brown is making her way after running away from an abusive marriage. She making a home and is learning to live. She’s trying to put her past in the past but every now and then she has a panic attack. She works at the Blue Plate Special Restaurant and helps print the town paper. While going out to get the supplies from the delivery wagon she finds a badly beaten man lying on the ground.
Shane Murphy is a shell of a man. He’s been drinking so long he doesn’t know what it’s like to be sober and he doesn’t want to find out. He’s drinking to forget the hurt and pain of his wife and daughter’s death, a death he did nothing to stop. He’s also trying to forget the war. The problem is he is forgetting the present too.
Lettie’s boss, the owner of the restaurant, can not allow Shane to lay there. She has Lettie help her put him to bed and doctor him. Lettie is resentful of the kindness being shown Shane until she begins to recognize some of the same problems she has.
Slowly, Lettie and Shane learn about each other and a friendship starts. Both are leery of letting it become more but neither expect the attraction that they have either. On a trip to get much needed supplies, their relationship and trust towards each other will be put to the test. If they have a lot of luck, they might find love and stay alive.
This is the third book in the Heart series by Emma Lang/Beth Williamson. It is not necessary to read the first two books in the series to enjoy this one. The characters from the previous books are in this book which is nice to see what they are doing. Events that happened in previous books are mentioned but this does not distract from the plot.
Lettie and Shane are very similar. Both are dealing with life changing events in the best way they know how. Neither wants to talk about them but each knows they have been permanently affected by them. Their paths to deal with what life has thrown at them are totally different. Lettie doesn’t want anyone to get close to her. She doesn’t like to touch people and doesn’t like people touching her. She is brisk and blunt which gives the impression that she doesn’t care. Shane just doesn’t want to deal with any of it so he drinks his life away. He likes the numbness that alcohol gives him. Not drinking isn’t an option that he’s even considered.
And these two main characters are written very well. They have families, or had families, and friends which have shaped how they cope with life. As they get to know each other things don’t magically become alright but they struggle with trust and love. Their interactions make them become real and alive. You feel their pain and their triumph.
This story is set in the west just after the Civil War. It reflects the times well. The Mormons were settling in Utah. Civilization was making its way to small towns by ways of newspapers and schools. Yet, supplies were to be found near railway stops and had to be brought to smaller towns by wagons. Thieves along the roads were not unusual and neither were kind strangers. This story reflects all ways of life during that era in a realistic way.
I enjoyed this story. The struggles became mine. The troubles kept me at the edge of my seat wondering how are they going to get out of this. The hope that ran through the story gave me hope that it would all come out with a happy ending. (Which it did.)
This is a great historical western romance with every element that you could possibly want. Nothing is missing and everything fits perfect. Both main characters are flawed but they are perfect for each other. Bad things happen but good comes out of it. Everything moved the story along and I didn’t want to put it down. I might miss something! Okay, I was involved and couldn’t wait to see where this story would go next. And, in the end, it was perfect.
She’s learning to live. He’s forgotten how. Love will be their teacher.
Lettie Brown has lived in the shadow of violence. After escaping her brutal past, she’s finally at home in Forestville, Wyoming, where she would live a normal life—if she knew how. She’s content working at The Blue Plate and printing the town newspaper, if not happy. Then a stranger stumbles into her world and turns everything upside down.
Shane Murphy is a shell of a man, destroyed by the aftermath of the war, his personal tragedies and a penchant for cheap whiskey. When he lands, literally, on Lettie’s feet, his future takes a hard right turn.
As they fumble through a relationship that should not have been, a deep love takes root, one that cannot be denied. Together they discover a bond as unbreakable as steel and as undeniable as life itself—until the past rears its ugly head and threatens the happiness they’ve found in each other.
Warning: Get ready for a deep, intense love story that will leave you crying, cheering, shouting, squirming and sighing. Prepare for a hero who needs to be held, a heroine who needs to be loved, and a story that needs to be told.