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The Bride Bargain (Prairie Promises #1)

3.83 of 5 stars 3.83  ·  rating details  ·  838 ratings  ·  59 reviews
When dropped from the wagon train along the Platte River for not pulling their load, Clara Fields is determined to find a way to provide for her newly-widowed aunt. So she strikes a bargain with an aging storekeeper that in exchange for finding a bride for his son Clara can have his house to run a boardinghouse. But Dr. Saul Reed is not interested in getting tied down to B ...more
Paperback, 288 pages
Published September 1st 2008 by Barbour Books
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I liked this book but I didn't love it. Its nicely done but there's no "wow" factor to it like a really great read gives you.

This is definitely a Christian novel and while not heavy on scripture, is probably not something a non-Christian would find appealing. The theme of the story, which I think most people can appreciate and relate to, is pride. There's also the underlying theme of disappointment in God not answering your prayers but giving you what He wants in return, which turns out even bet
"The Bride Bargain" by Kelly Eileen Hake had me turning the pages to see what happens next even long after my bedtime. I just couldn't put the book down.

I found the book to be full of those moments where one just might groan out loud because of how obvious things were to the reader, and the characters are completely clueless. There were times when I wanted to just give them a good, but gentle, slap across the back of the head because a character was just so clueless or the deed was so obvious.
This book was okay. I loved the plot, but some of the execution was so-so. Especially at the end. One thing that really bugged me was that Clara's last name kept changing. Is she Miss Field, Miss Edgerly, or Miss Reed? The other thing that I found was that the ending was very disappointing. It wrapped things up way too quickly and in a very confusing manner. It almost felt like Ms. Hake was running out of time and had a deadline to meet or so many words to meet to finish the book and she hurried ...more
This was a cute idea but was not executed well. The writing was all over the place with changing POV in the middle of a page and jumping around from one place to the next. The story just didn't flow well. The characters where interesting, but needed more depth. There was an ok amount of prayer and going to church not at all too preachy. But I hung in their and kept reading, but the end was a train wreck and just left be irritated. How many misunderstandings can there be between two people, well ...more
A pool read, a rather predictable but sweet romance.
Review originally posted on my blog Christian Novels
My Thoughts

When I heard that Cathy Marie Hake's daughter Kelly had written a series of books I was quite anxious to read them but because of my limited budget I didn't ended up purchasing the books when they came out. So when I saw a deal I couldn't pass up I snagged the set, though due to the amount of books I had to read I took me awhile to get around to actually reading them.

Boy, was I sorry I waited! This book was extremely well written and
I don't know if reading the books out of order was a mistake, but this book didn't move as fast for me as later books did in this series. I liked the history background that this book gave as to Midge's hard life of destitution, loss of family and her meeting of Doctor Saul Reed and him taking her on as his ward even though he was unmarried and a starting doctor in Baltimore.

You also get to meet Clara and Aunt Doreen and learn of their hardship during the Oregon train migration. How women were c
Angela Bycroft
Every now and then a story comes along that simply is a pleasure to read and demands no deep thinking or serious reflection. Just a simple tale of two different people, both wanting to gain their own agenda and yet indirectly both heading in the same direction. Clara and Doreen have been abandoned by the wagon train as without a man around they have been lagging behind. Arriving in the small town of Bottonwood, they are taken in by kind hearted storekeeper Josiah, who has plans of his own. His s ...more
This young author has written a great teen/young adult story about Clara and her aunt Doreen who have the guts to move west with a wagon train without benefit of a man's presence. Dragging themselves into town 2 days after the wagon train abandons them, they meet Josiah Reed, a lonely storekeeper, whose family is back east. He needs a woman's touch in his lonely huge home and they need respite. Josiah proposes a bargain in which if Clara gets Saul Reed to marry a girl in Buttonwood then Clara ca ...more
Clara Field and her Aunt Doreen Edgerly are headed for Oregon for a new start in life. Doreen married a very cruel man so she would be able to raise Clara after her parents were killed. She didn't know how bad a life she would have with that man and he detested Clara. Now it is Clara's turn to do something for her aunt, and that is to start over. It is unusual for a wagon train to take on a wagon with no man but there is a man who has agreed to help them in exchange for meals so they are headed ...more

My review is from reading an ARC version thanks to Angie of Barbour Books. An enjoyable read by an author new to me. In the same way that I enjoy, but do not absolutely love the work of Cathy Marie Hake I earnestly enjoy the writing of Kelly Eileen Hake as well. Being the same age as the author also gives me another reason to awe and praise her work. In the future I definitely look forward to reading many more stories from Kelly Eileen Hake to come.

First let me start with the only real downside
I have read other historical books by Kelly Hake, but I must say that this one was a favorite! Kelly has the talent to mix history with romance and faith, making a wonderful story! Her story line is tender and loving.

When I sat down to read this book, the first couple of pages took a bit to really capture me, but once I got past those pages, I was totally into the book, the characters, the plot and I didn't want to put the book down!

Kelly Hake is a young writer, but somehow she captures the life
I loved the world of this book. It was such a feel good, small town. I was a bit disappointed that the end of the book wasn't a couple of chapters longer--I feel like a couple of things that needed to be resolved were crammed together in a few pages instead of taking the time to flesh them out a bit more, but all in all I loved this book. I'm very excited to find out it's a series so I can continue on with it!
Set down upon the wild American plains during the 1850s, Clara is desperate for a home and a future for herself and her aunt. Striking a bargain with a lonely trader to fool a head-strong doctor could lead Clara to an unexpected avenue of romance.

Pretty predictable, though the storyline jumped around a lot and seemed to steer off into obscure subplots; it always came back to the obvious, though. The ending was rather abrupt, I guess we got to the book's objective and there it ended. The Christia
Carolyn Poppell
Sep 29, 2014 Carolyn Poppell added it
Recommends it for: young women +
This was a good book portrayed in the west with people overcoming doubt and hardships. The Bride Bargain is an easy read that just flows along with hardly any bumps. I loved the practical and silly way that Saul and Clara got together and the ways Mr. Reed had it all planned out. Overall, this is a sweet book of romance with light humor and a good strong belief in God.
Anne Osterlund
Clara is a young woman on the Oregon Trail determined to make her own way. Without the help of a man.

Saul is a recently graduated medical student determined to set up his own practice in the city. Without his father’s assistance.

However, when Clara’s ox wanders off and both she and her aunt are stranded in Buttonwood, who should they run into but Saul’s father?

Who offers Clara a bargain:

His house.

In exchange for:
a. finding his son a good woman.
b. convincing Saul to get married.
And c. persuading
I really love reading historical novels, but I did't really like this one. It was too slow paced, I was getting to the end and nothing was really happening. Also, it rapped up to quickly one minute you don't know whats happening and the next they are getting married.
Ms Hake's books pull me into the story and allows me to sit on the sidelines to cheer on the characters. Saul's determination to leave Buttonwood to set up his practice in Baltimore is a very noble cause. Midge is a wonderful supporting character that adds depth. Clara made me laugh often with her shennanigans to reach her goal. Readers almost see new stories branching off of this one. I can't wait to meet everyone again and see how Clara and Saul are doing.
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
good storyline, looking forward to reading more in this series. strong Christian/God references throughout, but not overwhelming, used to support character thinking/decisions.
Typical Kelly hake book. Strong independent sassy female characters. Clare makes a deal with Saul's father to help get Saul married off. Romance with typical ending.
Sara Smith
A book about a woman and her aunt by themselves on a wagon train headed to Oregon. A good reminder that life never turns out as we plan...sometimes it turns out better.
Diana (Bever) Barber
This is relaxing, filler reading for me: Christian historical romance. What can you expect? Someone needing a wife but not wanting one. Check. That someone being set up by someone who loves him or her to make marriage a distinct possibility. Check. The original someone changing his or her mind, eventually. Check. Someone with sins or other serious issues in their past. Check. Check. Check. No swearing. Check. No illicit sex. Check. Bible verses and interpretations that fit situations. Check. Che ...more
Great book! Love the story and the writing style. Very entertaining! :D
A.M. Heath
This was a wonderful start to a three book series. The Bride Bargain is the first I've read from Kelly Eileen Hake. What a treat it is to find a new favorite author with a list of books ready and waiting for me.
Miss Pippi the Librarian
Clara Fields and Aunt Doreen want a new start while they care for each other. They are headed to Oregon, but circumstances leave them in Buttonwood. The dry good's owner, Josiah Reed, understands their misfortune and offers them room and board for taking care of his home and helping in the mercantile. Josiah goes East to visit his daughter and his son Dr. Saul Reed returns to Buttonwood to manage the store.

Time Period: Western, 1855
Location: Buttonwood, Nebraska Territory, USA

Reviewed from a lib
I have finished this book and began the 2nd, loved this story about Clara and her aunt moving west in a wagon train. Clara is a strong willed young woman and they get "booted" off the train when they cause one too many problems for the wagon-master. It is ok though because they come to a small comunity where folks help folks and life really gets interesting when Clara meets Saul the kind and handsome dr that comes to town. I strongly suggest this series of 3 books by Kelly Hake to read.
M.C. Pearson
This was a cute and quick read.

I usually steer clear of anything having to do with prairies or bonnets, so for me to actually finish this book really says something.

Although predictable and slightly preachy, it was still cute. If you like Westerns and Romance, you would enjoy this book.
joy *the clean-reader extraordinaire*
there are pretty girls walking around every mall in america, and they couldn't find anyone better for this cover photo? yikes.

definite potential here. great characters and relationships. implausible plot twists keep this firmly in the middle of mediocre christian historical fiction.

I was looking forward to reading this one. I thought it would be a cheesy but fun read. It was a bit cheesy but also very slow and then very quick love story. I wish the characters had been more built up and the love story had a bit more to it. It is a clean read.
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Sinopsis en Español // Synopsis in Spanish 1 1 Jan 01, 2015 11:28AM  
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Kelly Eileen Hake is a reader favorite of Barbour's Heartsong Presents series, where she has released several books. A credentialed Secondary English teacher in California, she is pursing her MA in Writing Popular Fiction. Known for her own style of witty, heartwarming historical romance, Kelly is currently writing the Prairie Promises trilogy, her first full-length novels. She has been writing si ...more
More about Kelly Eileen Hake...

Other Books in the Series

Prairie Promises (3 books)
  • The Bride Backfire (Prairie Promises, #2)
  • The Bride Blunder (Prairie Promises, #3)
Rugged and Relentless (Husbands for Hire, #1) The Bride Backfire (Prairie Promises, #2) The Bride Blunder (Prairie Promises, #3) Tall, Dark, and Determined (Husbands for Hire, #2) Strong and Stubborn (Husbands for Hire, #3)

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