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Romancing Olive (Prairie Romance)

3.9  ·  Rating Details ·  441 Ratings  ·  72 Reviews
In 1891, spinster librarian, Olive Wilkins, is shocked to learn of her brother’s violent death at a saloon gaming table and her sister-in-law’s subsequent murder, traveling far from her staid life to rescue her niece and nephew, now orphans. She arrives to find the circumstances of her brother’s life deplorable and her long held beliefs of family and tradition, shaken.

Published November 1st 2011 by BookBaby
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(showing 1-30 of 938)
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A western tale where a well-to-do spinster comes to collect her dead brother's children, only to find them living with the neighbor instead of their deceased mother's family. She came under the impression that they had lived well only to discover the farce she had been told for years. She feels guilty, angry and sadden by all that she learned. She decides that she will be the one to give the children a happy life.

Though, she will have to stay put on the farm they are living at if she has hopes
Laura (Kyahgirl)
Jun 26, 2015 Laura (Kyahgirl) rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: people who like Maggie Osborne and Ellen O'connell
Recommended to Laura (Kyahgirl) by: Jenny Q
4/5; 4 stars; A-

Holly Bush is a new to me author. I read about this book on the blog of my GR friend Jenny Q. Since I like westerns with a romance angle, this was right up my alley.

I really appreciated how the author gave some insight into how incredibly hard the pioneering farmers had it. Just getting by was pretty much endless toil with moments of rest and relaxation coming few and far between. In an understated fashion, I thought Ms. Bush painted a vivid and believable picture of rural life
Jul 12, 2015 JLC rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The thing that draws me to HB's books are that they are beautiful stories of people who need people. (Yes, I just went all Barbra Streisand.) Stories of broken people who find another broken person & together make one another whole. Stories about people who reach out to lift another's burden & yokes all the while unknowingly releasing themselves from their own. I enjoy journeying along with these characters as they become better, happier people. I enjoy being there when they... sigh... f ...more
Sarah (onecurvyblogger)
Once I discovered a love for audiobooks thanks to How It Went Down, I went on a mission for sites that give away audiobooks for review. One of my biggest surprises was that some Goodreads groups do this! I know some groups giveaway eBooks to review, and in some cases paper copies, but audiobooks? Who knew! Suffice to say I snatched Romancing Olive up as quickly as possible. I need to catch up with my 2015 Historical Romance reading goal, and this is the perfect way to get me out of
Cute and sweet. Olive's character changes too much for me. In the beginning she comes across as competent, smart and able. As the book progresses, I lost interest in her - she becomes too "Mary Sue". Events occurred too quickly or are too implausible, In about 2 days time, she cleans, cooks, drives a wagon, shops (and throws money around), mothers, sews clothes for 4 children - need I go on? Later, she plans a house, contracts it and has it finished in no time - sounds like the late 20th century ...more
Jenny Q
Many of my reading buddies have discovered Holly Bush and have raved about her novels, and after reading Romancing Olive, I'm hopping on that bandwagon too! I really enjoyed this story of a Philadelphia society spinster uprooting herself and discovering a whole new world in rural Ohio, and discovering that it's never too late in life to reinvent oneself or to find true love. Olive Wilkins arrives in Ohio after being notified of the death of her younger brother and his wife, determined to become ...more
This is a well crafted, lovely romance that I stayed up late to finish. The themes here are not new (spinster aunt comes West to care for dead sibling's children and meets not ready to move on widower). As it is a character driven book, I wasn't holding my breath to see what crazy thing the plot would do next. I simply really enjoyed being with Olive and Jacob and the childern and so I didn't want to leave them.

While much of the plot is like sitting in a well worn rocking chair and running your
Books Mom
Sep 28, 2012 Books Mom rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I wasn’t certain that I would like this story when it began, but within a couple of lines, I was hooked. It was in 1890 and I was really curious to see what would happen to this prim, proper and straitlaced thirty-something spinster calming walking into a sheriff’s office in a small farming town in Ohio.

Having been informed that her niece and nephew had been orphaned, she had come to find them and return to Philadelphia with them. The sheriff offered to take her to where they were staying and s
Apr 19, 2015 Lilmissmolly rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Romancing Olive by Holly Bush is a wonderful early American story. Not quite a western, the story takes place in Ohio in 1891. The story centers on 35 year-old Olive, who proudly lives a contented life as a spinster librarian in Philadelphia. After she learns of the death of her beloved brother and sister-in-law in Ohio, she sets off to retrieve her young niece and nephew with the intent of bringing them back to Philadelphia.

What Olive didn't expect was the atrocious mannerisms and near barbari
I enjoyed this book! It was not in my usual genre so it took some getting used to. It is set in Ohio during the early 1890's. Olive is a librarian from Philadelphia who learns of her brother's violent death at a saloon gaming table and her sister-in-law's subsequent murder in her home on the farm. Olive's niece and nephew are now orphans without any family who is willing to take them in. When Olive receives a letter asking her her to come and take custody of the children, she travels to Ohio mea ...more
I recieved this audiobook as a gift in return for an unbiased review .
This is a charming romantic story set in Ohio in 1891, so it has that old western feel to it throughout.
I likes the characters and the calm pace of the story,dispite several disturbing happenings (Olive's plights are anything but calm.) Holly's writing has you rooting for the "good Guys" and hoping they will choose the right options.

Tha narration was by Lee Ann Howlett, she has a very plesant voice to listen to , and the slig
Book Binge
Apr 11, 2012 Book Binge rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: reviews-by-tracy
Olive Wilkins heads to Ohio to pick up her niece and nephew when she finds out that her brother and his wife have been killed. She is a spinster from Philadelphia and expects to pick them up and take them home in the blink of an eye. When she arrives at the homestead of the man who took them in after their parents were killed she finds a mouthy and obstinate 10 year old girl, Mary and her brother John who is younger and hasn’t spoken a word since he witnessed his mothers murder. Olive is shocked ...more
Jul 14, 2013 Kristi rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: historical
I like that this story was set in America and that the heroine, Olive, was around 10 years older than the hero, Jacob, and a spinster. I enjoyed that Olive was strong minded, flawed, and evolved in the story as she discovered herself. Further, I liked that the misunderstandings were realistic and not belabored as we so often see in romances. Misunderstandings were reasonably and understandably left to linger for only so long before they were discovered and resolved in some way.

Unlike some other
Judy & Marianne from Long and Short Reviews
Originally posted at: http://www.longandshortreviews.blogsp...

Olive was doing just fine living in Philadelphia and leading the nice quiet life of an unmarried woman. She wasn’t fond of the “spinster” connotation but had to admit it did fit her pretty well. She had a good female friend, her own home, her cat, and her routines. She was happy. Then she finds out her brother and his wife have been killed and she has a niece and nephew to collect from the west…

This author writes a very good tale abou
Vikki Vaught
May 30, 2012 Vikki Vaught rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What a sweet love story. Olive is a 35 year old spinster, and Jacob is 10 years younger. They meet when she comes to get her nephew and niece. Jacob had taken them in when their parents died. As the story progresses their affection for each other deepens. Olive realizes that she's fallen in love with Jacob, but knows that nothing can come of it, because Jacob can't let go of his grief for his dead wife. As their story unfolds, the reader is given insight into both their hearts. It was interestin ...more
Mar 15, 2012 Kathy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I thought this was an extremely sweet story about finding love in an unlikely place. There are some grammar issues (see: it's vs. its) but other than that, a thoroughly enjoyable read about a spinster who comes to claim her niece and nephew after they are left orphaned when their parents (who were, let's just say, not model citizens) were murdered. The widowed neighbor who is caring for them has some sadness in his past life, too, and spinster Olive quickly becomes attached to his children, as w ...more
Pilar Seacord
Aug 14, 2016 Pilar Seacord rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The book is set in 1891 Spencer, Ohio a little dusty town. Didn't think I would like it because I don't usually like books set in that time period but I loved it. Olive Wilkins gets a letter from her sister-in-laws family saying that their parents are dead and there is no one to take care of them. She lives in Philadelphia but decides to go get the children thinking the family was living nicely on a farm with a nice home. When she gets to Spencer she find out the kids parents where murdered and ...more
May 05, 2015 Deedra rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a great read.Olive lives the life of a spinster at home.When she goes to retrieve her brothers children,she learns of a whole other world.Though I found some of the narration somewhat halting,Lee Ann Howlett did a good job with voices.I was gifted this copy for an honest review.
Jun 15, 2015 Sherene rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Such a sweet story. It kept my interest I could not put the book down and was sad to see it end .
Jan 01, 2015 Karen rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Sweet romance, woman's self discovery, man releasing grief to love again.

A proper spinster with rose coloured glasses swoops in to rescue her brother's children. She finds nothing is what she'd thought. In getting to know her niece & nephew she learns about life outside the narrow path she'd set, even has two men vying for her affections.

Light summer read.
Jun 10, 2015 Nicole rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It's not often that I think a book is 5 stars but this one definitely sold me.

Romancing Olive takes a spinster librarian named Olive from the refined life of Philadelphia to the harsh realities of farmland Ohio. Olive heads to Ohio to take over the care of her niece and nephew after learning that her brother and sister in law have died, what she finds when she arrives is Jacob, a handsome young widowed father of three who has a farm to run but has none the less taken it upon himself to look aft
M.A. Nichols
Aug 03, 2016 M.A. Nichols rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans of clean historical romance featuring a spinster
Probably close to 3.5 than a 4 star book for me, but this is a sweet historical romance. I think a lot of it is that I really, really liked the heroine in this story. I know a lot of that has to do with identifying with a fellow "spinster" :), but I thought her character arc was well done and really realistic from my point of view. She's a wonderful character and I just fell in love with her.

The hero was a little flat and spent way too much time wallowing for my tastes, which is why the book doe
Sep 25, 2012 Maria rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I received a copy of this book as a part of a blog tour in exchange for a fair and honest review. Full post is at my blog:

Heartwarming and sweet, Romancing Olive by Holly Bush is a romance I won't soon forget. With well developed characters, charming dialogue and old fashioned romance, Ms. Bush captured my attention on the first page and never let go. The world building, Ohio at the end of the 19th century, is well done and historically accurate. The plot
Dec 28, 2014 namericanwordcat rated it really liked it
Romancing Olive Review In 1891, spinster librarian, Olive Wilkins, is shocked to learn of her brother’s violent death at a saloon gaming table and her sister-in-law’s subsequent murder, traveling far from her staid life to rescue her niece and nephew, now orphans. She arrives to find the circumstances of her brother’s life deplorable and her long held beliefs of family and tradition, shaken.Accustomed to the sophistication of Philadelphia, Olive arrives in Spencer, Ohio, a rough and tumble world ...more
Becky Sherriff
Sep 05, 2012 Becky Sherriff rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I have to be completely honest and admit western love stories are not my usual genre but ai really enjoyed it, I would definitely read another book from this genre and also from this author.

Romancing Olive is set in Ohio in the llate 1800's. It begins with Olive meeting with the sheriff of her brother's town to learn that her brother and his wife have been killed and left behind 2 children, one niece and one nephew for Olive.

They also leave behind a house in the small town of Spencer. The childr
Susan Anderson
Put away your notions of romancing. Dust off your ideas of shocking and pick up a copy of ROMANCING OLIVE by Holly Bush, a family saga reminiscent of THE THORNBIRDS.

The year is 1891 and a spinster librarian, Olive Wilkins, arrives in a frontier town in Ohio to rescue two traumatized children, her niece and nephew. At the start of the story, they are orphans, having witnessed their parent's brutal murders. They have been living with a neighboring farmer, a widower and father to three young childr
Ruth Hill
Jul 12, 2012 Ruth Hill rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What a breath off fresh air! This book was one of the best historical romances I have read in a while, and it was an absolute delight from start to finish. I have never read anything by Holly Bush, but she has quickly become one of my favorites.

First of all, yes, this is your typical "Western" romance (West meaning Ohio). But there are some things that make it stand apart from the others. Olive in a near-40 spinster, and Jacob is a 20-something widower. Olive has a niece and nephew, and Jacob ha
nomadreader (Carrie D-L)
(originally published at

The basics: When Olive receives a letter saying her only brother James and his wife are dead, she sets off from Philadelphia to Spencer, Ohio to gather their two children, Mary and John. She intends to take them back to Philadelphia with her, but there is much about life in Spencer and the life her brother led to surprise Olive.

My thoughts: Historical romance is not typically a genre I'm drawn to, but this novel featured so many things I
Sep 25, 2012 Brenda rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
"Romancing Olive" by Holly Bush really stands out from the typical historical fiction read.

First of all she gives us a character that is more middle aged, and she also throws in a bit of suspense to keep the plot moving along.Normally within the first few pages of a story I am pretty sure how things will work out in the end, but with "Romancing Olive," I wasn't so sure.

Olive Wilkins is 35 years old who's days in Philadelphia are well planned. She took care of her parents who died within a year
Reviewers for R.N.J
Nov 15, 2014 Reviewers for R.N.J rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: historical
4.5 stars


Olive Wilkens, a 35 year old spinster living in Philadelphia gets news that her brother and sister-in-law are violently murdered in Ohio were they live. Olive travels to Ohio to take guardianship of her niece Mary and nephew John. Upon arrival Olive learns her brother and his families were not living the life she thought and his children have lived a difficult life. Widower Jacob Butler rescues John and Mary from the home where they saw their mother murdered and takes them
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Sinopsis en Español // Synopsis in Spanish 1 2 Oct 02, 2015 10:46AM  
Goodreads Librari...: Please add this book (and combine existing editions) 6 20 Mar 30, 2015 10:11AM  
Happily Ever Afte...: Romancing Olive gets an Update! 3 12 Oct 03, 2014 05:31PM  
Historical Romance: Romancing Olive Giveaway! 1 11 Feb 19, 2012 02:13PM  
Clean Romances: Romancing Olive Giveaway 1 15 Feb 19, 2012 01:55PM  
Clean Romances: New Historical Romance 2 18 Dec 05, 2011 11:58AM  
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I grew up in a home where I was surrounded by books. There was not a room that did not hold a bookcase, stack or shelves of books. My father didn't care what we read, although he did, as long as we read something, even a comic book. His stack of books beside his reading chair that sat next to a sunny window was a strange mix of westerns, political intrigue, current affairs, science fiction and the ...more
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