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Short-Straw Bride (Archer Brothers #1)

4.2 of 5 stars 4.20  ·  rating details  ·  6,377 ratings  ·  714 reviews
No one steps on Archer land. Not if they value their life. But when Meredith Hayes overhears a lethal plot to burn the Archer brothers off their ranch, a twelve-year-old debt compels her to take the risk.

Fourteen years of constant vigilance hardens a man. Yet when Travis Archer confronts a female trespasser with the same vivid blue eyes as the courageous young girl he once
Paperback, 365 pages
Published June 1st 2012 by Bethany House
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Regina Jennings
Warning - reading this book in public can lead to embarrassment.

I had a doctor appointment recently and was excited to finally have some quiet time to read "Short-Straw Bride". Unfortunately, the waiting room was too quiet.

When young Meredith steals onto Archer land and Travis - the misunderstood and feared hero - comes to her rescue, I was hooked. I was completely engrossed in the story when Meredith, under the impression that she's dreaming, tells the scary Mr. Archer what she really thinks o
Anne Osterlund
As a young girl, Meredith Hayes made the mistake of stumbling onto restricted Archer land. And into a steel trap that left her with a permanent limp. As well as a permanent weakness for the young man who pulled her out of that trap, Travis Archer.

Years later, Meredith is now a young woman, expected to marry for the good of her aunt and uncle’s financial security. But when Meredith overhears her espoused suitor plotting to burn down the Archer barn, she eschews family loyalty. And sneaks onto Arc
Judith (Judith'sChoiceReads)
Both Travis and Meredith were excellent characters, this book is a lot of fun with great wholesome values that cannot help but inspire and poignant romance that stirs the heart. This author has a knack for writing humorous fiction abound with great faith lessons, you won't want to miss getting your hands on her latest instalment!

Ok, so, I don't know if it's just me being half-witted or what, but I *still* don't understand the whole Archers-are-not-allowed-off-their-land-and-no-one-is-allowed-on-it-either affair. I mean, I understand how Travis felt responsible for his brothers and did not want anybody trying to coax him into selling his land, but forbidding everyone to even step on his land? I mean, they probably had friends and neighbours, no? Anyway, I didn't bother me that much, and I w
Lisa Kay
(This is a review of the audiobook.) You know a narrator is good when a secondary character starts speaking and you know who it is right away, without other clues. Pilar Witherspoon gives such a performance in this wonderful, sweet romance. Her enunciation, pace, and tones are all perfect for every character. I’ll definitely look for more of her readings.

What a lovely romance. It is certainly “one-foot-on-the-floor” – but still, there is plenty of heat between the hero and heroine. And there’s
So I finally got a chance to read Short Straw Bride and Oh. My. Goodness. Karen never disappoints me, her novels are pure perfection and I just adored this sweet story. It seems all of Karen's books that I read end up on my favourites shelf. I absolutely loved this story and I'll have a more full review to come soon!

UPDATE 04/13/2015:

Short Straw Bride is absolutely on my BEST of 2015 list and snuck to the top of it. Short Straw Bride is my third Karen Witemeyer novel and reminded me why Karen is
Jul 02, 2013 Sarah rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Mature readers
Age Appropriate For: 15 and up for marital themes

Best for Ages: 18 and up

This book had been sitting on my Kindle for a few months. Several of my friends kept raving about Karen Witemeyer, so I decided to give her a try thinking it would be a nice, light, one-time read. Boy, was I in for a big surprise.

It was so refreshing to have a strong Christian message without feeling preachy. I know it is hard for many authors to find that happy medium. If they want some pointers, study Karen Witemeyer. Her

I really enjoyed this one. I thought the premise sounded cute, but to be honest I didn’t have the highest expectations. I knew it was a Christian fiction, which sometimes tend to be overly preachy for my taste. So, I was pleasantly surprised by just how much I liked this one. I thought it was really well written, with very likable characters.

Meredith was a fun leading lady. She is feisty, stubborn and kind. She is also fearless and honorable. It was endearing to see her ride onto the Archer r
First posted on my blog, Legacy of a Writer.

Once again, Karen Witemeyer has penned another wonderful read!! Short-Straw Bride pricks your interest with the prologue and by the second chapter, I was captivated. After reading two other books by Witemeyer, I know to expect a book that will entertain, enthrall, and warm your heart all at the same time—and she’s done again with Short-Straw Bride!

I really enjoyed getting to know Meredith and the Archer men. The story behind why the Archer’s are so fea
Abby Moreland
holy cow, I loved this book. definitely surprised me. honestly, I don't really know what I was expecting as I sat down to start this book, but I don't believe I was expecting to fall in love! already have another book by Whitemeyer on hold at the library. hehe.
rarely ever do I start the first chapter of a book and immediately get sucked in. rarely, rarely, rarely. (my standards are pretty high for books, if you couldn't tell. hah.) but this book had me captured by the first few paragraphs. even
I adored every minute that I spent reading Short-Straw Bride. The tension and interaction between the main character, Meredith, and the male lead, Travis, was swoon-worth and so sweet. Travis was protective, stubborn and sweet and Meredith was both brave and vulnerable at the same time. Their relationship progressed in a really heartfelt way, and watching their relationship develop after their "short-straw" wedding tugged at my heart. The supporting characters, especially the other 3 Archers bro ...more
Twelve years ago Travis Archer saved Meredith Hayes’ life by freeing her from a steel trap. Since then she has always thought he was the man of her dreams and secretly loved him, despite they were both very young and he was considered a dangerous boy. Now, after many years without seeing each other, it is her turn to save his life and his brothers’ as well. But once at their ranch her life will change forever. Her reputation is in danger and the only solution is to marry one of the Archer brothe ...more
Meredith (Austenesque Reviews)
Loved the hero - an untrusting recluse who is the head of the family and protector to his 3 younger brothers for the last twelve years. And the heroine is just as wonderful - brave, kind-hearted, and compassionate. I also loved that her name was Meredith! (Such a first for me to read a story where the heroine has the same name!) :)

A gripping story full of tension, drama, forced marriages schemes, and rescues! An inspiring message about being a good neighbor and opening your heart to others is de
This is one of those book that you wished never end.
Amber Stokes
I saved the reading of this book for my birthday, and what a treat it was! Karen Witemeyer's books are delicious - from the absolutely delightful covers to the meaningful romance stories between them. This particular book, with a few character and plot elements that resemble those of Seven Brides for Seven Brothers (a movie a dear friend got me hooked on), is really quite endearing!

This story starts out with a lot of naivete and misunderstandings. Travis, while doing his best to appear tough, is
With each turn of the page I fell more in love with these two characters. Both with heads harder than the land they work (I’m sure), but no two could be more fun to watch grow, change…and fall in love.

Know what I love? A good love story. Know what else I love? Characters that are witty and endearing. Stubborn and determined, but with a healthy dose to do what’s right. Travis and Meredith both have that in spades.

The plot is unique and just wait until you read the scene where the brothers “draw
Jul 02, 2012 Becky added it
I heard Karen say that the musical Seven Brides For Seven Brothers inspired the idea for this story. As it happens, I was charmed by the movie and likewise very much charmed by Karen's take on the premise.

In Short-Straw Bride, four brawny cowboy brothers all live sequestered away on their ranch. None have left its boundaries for years and years. Then a woman is dropped into their midst and their carefully ordered lives are turned upside down. (Which is lots of fun to watch). :)

Karen is such a t
This was my second time reading this book and I started it at about 9:45 PM intending to just read a little bit. After all, having read it before, I thought it would be easy to put back down. At 1:15 AM, I finally put my kindle down after reading the end of the book. Thankfully, the next day was Saturday. :)
After reading her debut novel, A Tailor-Made Bride, almost two years ago I've come to expect nothing but the best western romance in a Karen Witemeyer and not surprisingly that is exactly what you get with Short-Straw Bride. Be prepared to set everything aside and get swept away in a tale that is reminiscent of a fairy-tale. Meredith isn't a princess but she is a girl with a dream of one day once again meeting the boy who rescued her from a coyote trap. Travis isn't a prince but he certainly is ...more
Jessica  (My Not So Vacant Shelf)
So I have to admit that when I look at romance novels I always expect a lot of heat. I was happily surprised when I found out that it was actually a straight-up romance novel. All about two people falling in love. *Swoon.
And better yet she ends up getting stuck on a farm with four hot men and one that is determined to believe she is his responsibility. An of course they’ve only every laid eyes upon each other once before—12 years ago and they remembered each other every since. Her beautiful eyes
Meredith is quite a determined child. When the boys at school throw her lunch box into the Archer's property, she refuses to go home without it. Making the decision to trespass onto property that has been fenced off from the world changes her life forever. Now, over 10 years later, Meredith is grown but still can't seem to forget the Archer clan, especially, Travis, the one that rescued her.

From the very beginning, I enjoyed this book. I normally don't like time jumps in books, but for this one,
Review on Amazon:
Review on my blog (to be posted 8/29):

After hearing so many great things about Karen Witemeyer's books (in particular, Short-Straw Bride), I've finally read one of her books and, let me just say, it was as good as people have said!

The prologue to Short-Straw Bride goes back to when Meredith and Travis first met - I found that great! It really gave context to the story and what had happened all thos
I really enjoyed reading this book. It was so good that I finished reading it in two days which is pretty fast for a slow reader like me. I love a good, old fashioned cowboy book and the fact that this one took place in Texas only made me love it more. I enjoyed the brotherly banter and Christian values. Finally, a Christian book where I could actually see the characters living their faith out! These days, it seems like every Christian book I pick up has hardly any faith in it at all. I was plea ...more
I really wanted to like this book. I was drawn to it because it looked like a fun western, and because I'm a sucker for marriage of convenience or mistakenly-needed shotgun marriage storylines, as you know in fiction they will always turn out well! But as much as I wanted to, this book put me off early and gave me no reason to invest my time or emotions in it.

The book opened with the young heroine, Meredith, acting on a schoolmate's dare to go onto the property of the reclusive Archer brothers.

A friend at work recommended this one to me. It is Christian fiction, which I like. And I had to roll my eyes when I noticed on Goodreads that it was also logged in as a romance novel, which I am not a fan of.

Sometimes Christian fiction and especially romance can be sappy, repetitive, and predictable. And this book was all of those things. Yeah, I rolled my eyes, but I still liked it…a lot.

It definitely had some things going for it. I loved the dialogue. That part of it was so well written. Th
I was at a book festival today in Dallas and picked up this book....and never put it down. It was absolutely amazing!! Karen Witemeyer is by far one of my favorite authors. You should definitely read this book. The suspense was amazing.
Love this author, can't wait for this one! She and Deeanne Gist are my favorite Christian romance authors.

Update: I read this one and liked it, but not as much as her others.
This is the first of the books about the Archer brothers, a Christian book set in Texas in the 1880s. I’d read book 2, Stealing the Preacher, and loved it, so I picked up Short Straw Bride, which introduces the four Archer brothers, Travis, Crockett (who is the hero of Stealing the Preacher), Jim and Neill. These four have a very sad backstory – their mother died from childbed fever after having Neill, and their father continued to raise them for a few years before he died after falling from his ...more
Lauren Kern
I've read other novels by Karen Witemeyer but this by far is my favorite. I was swept up in Meredith and Travis's story of loyalty to family and those you love, trusting others enough to let your walls down, and learning how to make a true, abiding love last. The novel was extremely well-written, without any lags in the plot, and the characters stayed true to themselves throughout the book. It was not overly dramatic, as I have found in other books in the "Love Inspired Historical" series which ...more
“Meredith gripped the edge of the chair seat with her left hand as a new

light-headedness assaulted her. Travis Archer had just proposed. Really

proposed. Sure, he’d made no mention of love, but he had only been in

her company for three days—four if she counted the day she stepped in

that trap twelve years ago. The man needed time to catch up. After all,

she’d been in love with him since she was ten. She had a bit of a head


I’ve waited months to get my hands on this book
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What is your favorite Karen Witemeyer book? 30 108 Feb 07, 2015 06:59AM  
Sinopsis en Español // Synopsis in Spanish 1 1 Nov 20, 2014 10:48AM  
¿Por qué no una traducción al Español? 1 1 Oct 22, 2014 12:35PM  
Translation to Spanish, why not? 1 2 Jul 07, 2014 04:16PM  
Christian Fiction...: * January Main Read - Short-Straw Bride 113 124 Feb 03, 2013 09:20AM  
Christian Fiction...: * October Historical Group Read 17 32 Oct 31, 2012 06:40AM  
Fans of Amish Fic...: Giveaway:Short-Straw Bride by Karen Witemeyer 1 23 Jul 27, 2012 03:47PM  
  • Over the Edge (Kincaid Brides, #3)
  • The Doctor's Lady
  • A Bride in the Bargain
  • Courting Morrow Little
  • Blue Moon Promise (Under Texas Stars, #1)
  • A Promise to Love (Michigan Northwoods, #2)
  • A Great Catch (Lake Manawa Summers, #2)
  • Love in Disguise
  • The Tutor's Daughter
  • Serendipity (Only in Gooding, #5)
  • Prize of My Heart (Sea Heroes of Duxbury)
  • A Texan's Honor (Heart of a Hero #2)
CBA bestselling author, Karen Witemeyer, writes historical romance fiction for Bethany House, believing that the world needs more happily-ever-afters. In 2011, her debut novel, A Tailor-Made Bride, was a finalist in the Best First Book categories for both the prestigious RITA award and the National Reader's Choice Award. Karen holds a master's degree in Psychology from Abilene Christian University ...more
More about Karen Witemeyer...

Other Books in the Series

Archer Brothers (3 books)
  • Stealing the Preacher (Archer Brothers, #2)
  • A Cowboy Unmatched  (A Match Made in Texas, #1)
A Tailor-Made Bride To Win Her Heart Head in the Clouds Stealing the Preacher (Archer Brothers, #2) Full Steam Ahead

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“If you want to protect me, prayer is just as powerful a weapon as that gun you carry.” 61 likes
“No matter how many precautions we take, none of us are truly in control. Only God can claim that kind of authority. All we can do is use the good sense he provides and trust him to guide us.” 25 likes
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