Homespun Bride (The McKaslin Clan: Historical Series, Book 1) (Steeple Hill Love Inspired Historical #2)
by Jillian Hart
- File Size: 379 KB
- Print Length: 288 pages
- Publisher: Love Inspired Historicals (January 15, 2014)
- ASIN: B00HAZ6C2I
Genre: Historical Romance, Inspirational
My Rating: 4.5 of 5.0
Steeple Hill (February 12, 2008)
Montana Territory in 1883 was a dangerous place—especially for a blind woman struggling to make her way through an early winter snowstorm. Undaunted, Noelle Kramer fought to remain independent. But then a runaway horse nearly plunged her into a rushing, ice-choked river, before a stranger's strong, sure hand saved her from certain death.
And yet this was no stranger. Though she could not know it, her rescuer was rancher Thad McKaslin, the man who had once loved her more than life itself. Losing her had shaken all his most deeply held beliefs. Now he wondered if the return of this strong woman was a sign that somehow he could find his way home.
Noelle became blind due to an injury during a carriage accident that killed her wealthy parents. She lives in Montana territory with her Aunt and Uncle and several younger female cousins. Noelle manages to live a fairly normal, if reserved, life with thier loving support. But she has put her dreams of love and family behind her especially since, before the accident, the love of her 16 year old heart left her behind to go wandering and cowboying.
Thad has returned home to help his brother take care of his ailing mother and their struggling family ranch. Thad had loved Noelle when he was 19, but her father made him realize that he couldn’t give her the things that her wealth and position had prepared her for. He had heard about her engagement to another wealthy beau and hoped his heart could stand the sorrow of seeing her with someone else. Thad shocked when he rescues a run-away horse and carriage to discover that Noelle is blind and living with relatives. At first he thinks, and hopes, she will not know who he is. After all, even if she did recognize him he is sure that she could never forgive him for breaking her young heart.
Noelle knows the voice of her rescuer. She doesn’t want to remember the love and doesn’t want to forgive. As Thad helps her Uncle who is trying to learn to manage horses, Noelle experiences again the tender care and responsibility of the young man she loved even though she can’t reconcile that with the boy who abandoned her. Then she learns that there were secrets behind Thad’s desertion that change her perceptions. Still, she believes he deserves a wife who isn’t damaged - a wife who can share building a homestead with him - things she doesn’t think she can do.
This is a truly heart warming story. It is also beautifully written. I was repeatedly struck by the wonderful prose and phrasing that just made the warm story and the historical setting that much richer. I really liked how Ms. Hart portrayed the aspects of Noelle’s blindness. She continually shows the extra efforts necessary for daily tasks which is quite interesting. Ms. Hart does a beautiful job in revealing the underlying characters of Noelle and Thad as they struggle to overcome their hurts and fears to find the joy of their first love. The story moved along nicely as an easy read.
There is some repetition of the self-doubt themes that could become aggravating but still I loved the story and loved the writing. I checked my reading lists and see that I read one book by Jillian Hart in 2005. I have three I have collected in print and three more in my Kindle library. I will work my way to them soon. I recommend this to readers who, like me, are sometimes ready to take a break from the fast pace to enjoy a sweet, warm-hearted romance.
Noelle: How did she tell him the truth? She ought to be crying for her uncle, but the tears were for herself. For him. She held on to those bright pieces of joy like a miser did his last pieces of gold. They were shivers of happiness she could not stand to remember. They were bits of sorrow she could not forget. (location 1295.)
Thad: I"'ll never let you fall." He used that wondrous voice of his against her, replete with humor and unspoken dreams. Quiet, secret dreams that had her heart opening and her wishes coming to life. (Location 2493.)
I have had this title in my Kindle library as a free book since 2009. It qualifies for COYER, TBR Double Dare, and 2015 TBR Pile Challenge.Since this book has been re-released again in 2014 (as well as 2012 which I have also)
I have copied my original purchase order to make sure I get credit in the TBR Pile Challenge: