The year is 1934. In the Shenandoah Mountains of Virginia Lila Bruce, a young woman nearing the age when she might be called an “old maid” marries handsome Joe Jennings, a man she has loved since she was a young girl. He’s made it clear to her that this is a marriage of convenience, but she still has hopes that she can somehow make him love her. Their lovemaking is passionate and steamy, right from the start, but can she connect with his heart? Their lives threatened by forces beyond their control, they share an absolute passion, but can they find love before it’s too late. Set against a backdrop of conflict and danger, this is a novel of great love and great courage.
Review: I requested to read this as I am a sucker for historical romances, especially if they are set in the days before electricity. There’s something about having the freedom to do what you want with whatever is at your fingertips that makes me wonder why I wasn’t born in the days of Laura Ingalls Wilder.
Er, so anyway!
I loved Lila right from the start. She’s spunky, smart, stubborn, and a little bit defiant too. I am not overly fond of simpering foolish women who think they need a man to do everything for them or whom gasp in horror if they so much as see a man’s naked arm let alone have consensual sex with their spouses, so Lila fit right in with what I love most about my heroines.
Joe, eh, I needed to warm up to him as I wasn’t overly fond of how he treated Lila. In fact, through a good portion of the book I wondered why Lila didn’t lose her patience with him and give him a good ol’ fashioned black eye! But I didn’t have to wait long as she gave him a good smack a time or two that made me giggle and cheer her on.
This isn’t just a historical romance novel, though. There’s a little bit of suspense that is thread in between Joe & Lila’s relationship and the main point of the novel – our government stole land from folks just to build up a park for people to visit or whatnot. I felt sympathy for those in the book whose lives were turned upside down by losing the only home(s) they’d ever known and for those who really did lose their land back when. I wonder how many times our Founding Fathers have rolled over in their graves at the injustices Americans have faced over the last several hundred years all in the name of “for the good of the People”.
But don’t let my talk about the injustices done to people over a hundred years ago steer you clear of this book; Joe and Lila have an amazing dynamic that’s sweet and strong. I look forward to reading the rest in this series and hope that if you’ve read this book or are planning on it that you’ll let me know what you thought//think!