The Bride Lottery

The Bride LotteryThe Bride Lottery by Kristin Holt
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Sweet romance taking place in Colorado territory in 1881. Wealthy and pregnant Evelyn Brandt has no prospects to avoid social ruin. She is sent away by her parents to give birth in San Francisco and give her child up for adoption.

On the train west, she meets a group of young ladies heading for a new town in Colorado. They have agreed to become mail order brides for the men in the new town. However, 15 brides are arriving for the 40 men! Sam Kochler, owner of the mercantile and abstained from the bride search, becomes the manager of the process. When the train reaches the station closest to the town, Evelyn gets off and goes with them. Even though she is not part of the group, the ladies welcome her.

When she first sees Sam, they are both attracted and leery of any involvement. There are a few close calls, first from overzealous grooms-to-be, and then from Sam’s spoiled ex-fiancĂ©e. However, Sam and Evelyn find thir future and their new family. Sweet and clean.

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Before I Fall (Falling #1)

Before I Fall (Falling Book 1)Before I Fall by Jessica Scott
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

First of a new series about soldiers returning home from a newer war. This series is a New Adult series, so be aware. I generally don’t read this genre, but I appreciate Scott’s hand with this type of romance – the physical and emotional toll of war in the 21st century.

Beth is a student at a very good Southern college, and she feels the pressure every day to conform, even though she considers herself an impostor. She’s not a spoiled little rich girl but a struggling young woman who is the only support for her ailing father.

Noah is a returning vet who also feels out of place at this “Southern Ivy”. He is in rough shape, having suffered physical and emotional scars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Beth is asked to tutor Noah, and they make assumptions about each other. Finding the truth and all the other facts they have been hiding comprises the story. There is another layer here, the one involving Beth’s father and the dependence they have on each other. Scott does a great job with this new look at homecoming after a war.

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