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Orphan Moon

4.24  ·  Rating details ·  376 ratings  ·  65 reviews
An epic saga of adventure and grit on the edge of the western frontier, Orphan Moon demonstrates the power of a courageous human spirit in the face of tragedy, loss, and the struggle to survive.

Kindle Book Reviews and Book Awards Semi-Finalist - Literary Fiction - 2016
Readers' Favorite Bronze Medal Winner - Western Fiction - 2016
The Wishing Shelf Independent Book Award Fin
Paperback, 311 pages
Published April 3rd 2015 by Chevalier Publishing
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Average rating 4.24  · 
Rating details
 ·  376 ratings  ·  65 reviews

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James Sillwood
Jun 02, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I found this book difficult to put down. The story of Barleigh, high spirited and determined, brave and generous, is packed with adventure, suspense, sadness and romance. Barleigh is tough, but has her vulnerable side too, especially when she learns about her past. She keeps a journal, the only place she feels able to disclose her true feelings. Her family mean a great deal to her, and the thought of them drives her on through great hardship.
Hughes Levesque, a Texas Ranger, makes a promise to L
Pam Walter
I'm giving Orphan Moon a 2 rather than a 1 only because I finished it rather than throwing it against the wall. The book's overall rating is 4.25, so most people apparently disagree with me. Nineteen year old Barleigh is hiding out in the cellar while what family she has is killed by a wild band of Indians or outlaws. Her father and uncle have been killed leaving her with her aunt who was in the cellar with her. She finds from the attorney that she has been left the ranch, however there are sign ...more
Ian Welch
Aug 08, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I was given a copy of 'Orphan Moon' in return for an honest review. Wow, this is a great read. Take a step back into the 1860s, the pony express is burning trails across the mid west. It was like reliving some old western movie. Gunslingers, cowboys and Indians. But the real glue to the novel is the plot. Barleigh Flanders' father and step mother perish in an Indian attack on their homestead. A tax debt hangs over the ranch and time is fast running out to save the property.
Orphan Moon traces Bar
Jun 09, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Orphan Moon is a novel by T.K. Lucas. It is a historical fiction which takes place in 1860 near the Brazos River. The book is really good and although fiction give us a glimpse into life in the 1800’s. The characters are realistic and the plot is really good. I simply loved the book. The action and adventure are well written and you feel like you are there with them.
Barleigh Flanders was 19 when the Indian attack near the Brazos River took her father, Birdie, and Uncle Jack. She, Aunt Winnie, a
Jackie Parry
Aug 04, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Set in 1860 this is a story of a courageous girl (Barleigh) losing everything and growing into a woman while scraping her life back together.

With easy to follow flashbacks we learn about Leighselle and how she weaves into the story via Hughes, a Texas Ranger, and a dear friend of Leighselle. Hughes is a tough character, capable of many things but loaded with his own problems, too. Barleigh is/and becomes intrinsically linked to them both. With her fierce grittiness she’s a character that quickly
Matt Abraham
Jul 22, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I have to say that I’m not much for reading about Westerns (watching them, heck yeah!), however Orphan Moon has me rethinking that. The young heroine Barleigh (Bar) Flanders faces a harrowing life event, and rather than take what’s being offered by an unscrupulous banker she seizes her own fate, and impossibly joins the Pony Express. We also follow a Texas Ranger Hughes Levesque (aka Wolf Eyes) on his own mission complete and motivation. Overall I think the realism offered in the landscapes and ...more
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Apr 10, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was a most satisfactory read in every respect. I love historical fiction, and if there's romance in it, so much the better. This is a literary romance set in a most unusual time and place -- the fringe of the US western frontier from 1830s-60s. Texas, Missouri, New Orleans, and Utah, to be specific. There is a still teenaged girl, Barleigh, who endures tragedy and faces ruin. To solve her problems, she assumes a daring role, and along the way encounters the Pony Express (many wonderful deta ...more
Pam Lecky
Oct 04, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Great Story Well Told

I am not particularly knowledgeable about this era of American history or indeed about horses but I need not have worried! The author is extremely well versed in both. If you like adventure, romance and an exciting story against the backdrop of a time of great change, then you will love this tale. The characters are well developed with great back stories (a must for me!). The story moves along at a good pace, neither too slow or too fast.

My only concern was the number of soa
Ginette R Jonas
Apr 16, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Wonderful read!!

I may be partial? Being that I am a direct descendant of a Texas ranger and a Comanche woman. But I read a lot and you made me cry, which is rather difficult to do. I am a very happy reader. Thank you and please keep writing. Ginny
Leta McCurry
Feb 26, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Historical adventure/love story. Young woman’s parents killed in an Indian raid in the 1800s. Nasty banker threatens to foreclose on the ranch she inherits from her father. Young woman, Barleigh, disguises herself as a boy and gets a job as a Pony Express rider to earn money to save her ranch. This story gives a good insight into the bravery of these young riders and the perils they endured to get the mail through. The characters are believable and sharply defined. The flashbacks and parallel st ...more
Kathy Brickert
Sep 27, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

What a great story! I read it through non stop! A tough life that a tough girl overcame. It inspired and encouraged , lessons from long past generation to today. Loved it!
Catherine Herzog
Sep 02, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Orphan Moon was a story I had trouble putting down. Both Barleigh and Leighselle are bright and strong characters that earn respect as this story progresses. Hughes is easily likeable immediately not just for his high standards but also for his stand to protect those around him. This story is a wild adventure from the beginning to the end. Though the events as they unfold, both the memories, and what is happening present day in the story, break your heart, there is this strength of character tha ...more
Yvonne Bledsoe
Feb 24, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed reading Orphan Moon! It was a good historical romance. I learned a lot about the short history of the Pony Express.
Arielle LeClair
Mar 06, 2016 rated it it was amazing
**I received a copy of this book for free in return for an honest review**

I enjoyed the way T. K. Lucas wrote this book. When in action, her sentences were short and choppy, accentuating the stress and thoughts of her characters to enable the reader to experience those same emotions. Her use of vocabulary and the way she described people and places was very well done, and I had a clear picture of everything right from the beginning.

There is a trigger warning that should accompany this book, as i
Jan 29, 2016 rated it it was amazing
It's no surprise this book gained acclamation in several book awards. Orphan Moon is a gritty, tell-it-like-it-is, in your face, tale about a courageous young woman who fights to regain her life after a terrible massacre. As I read along, this novel had me cheering, crying, and white knuckling my kindle. Barleigh Flanders looses everything after her family is massacred. Determined to fight for her money so she can rebuild her life and take care of her young sister, she sets out on an incredible ...more
May 22, 2015 rated it it was amazing
A thrill ride from go.
I am an admirer of facts and a lover of history. When an author can bring me back in time and not only deliver the scenes and the senses of a time period but also deliver facts, interesting and funny, then I become an instant fan.
Ms. Lukas has a skill that I admire, her writing never bores and the story has a quick and detailed flow. I love Barleigh, she has grit and wit. She reminds me of myself a bit when I was younger with tons more brashness and daring :-)
This is an a
Sep 27, 2016 added it
Orphan Moon is a beautifully written historic romantic adventure, combining multiple surprises and suspense. The author, T. K. Lucas, writes with gusto, I fell in love with all her characters. I longed for the hero and heroine to connect. The suspense as to when and how kept me turning the pages. The heroine, a naïve young woman, loses her home, her land and more, for lack of tax money. Her desire to regain the homestead, gives her the impetus to change her identity in order to take a position, ...more
Terry Sprouse
Sep 17, 2015 rated it really liked it
Orphan Moon is an exciting story of the Wild West, uniquely told from the heroine’s perspective. The author has done her home work in terms of the very descriptive characterizations of both the settings and the characters.

Young Barleigh Flanders faces a terrifying future following the death of her father and stepmother at the hands of marauding Indians. A crooked banker tries to take advantage of her naiveté but she boldly joins the Pony Express to help provide for herself and her sisters. Along
Aug 01, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I received Orphan Moon for free through Goodreads First Reads.

Western isn't my usual genre, but Orphan Moon caught my interest because I've always been intrigued by historical stories of women disguising themselves as men in order to work or fight in eras when they had few options or rights. I'm glad I won it because it was a fun and wonderful story -- emotional and fast-paced with complex characters, well-researched history, and humor woven in with tragedy. It took me a while to get started rea
Aug 03, 2015 rated it liked it
I won this book on Goodreads, and while I mostly enjoyed this book, I think I'm giving it a 3- rating, based on the language and the graphic portrayal of a rape scene, and other brutality. Accurate or not, it's too much. Granted, the main character is acting as a 18 year old boy who becomes a Pony Express Rider, and language and sexuality were likely part of that, but I didn't enjoy that part of the book at all. Too much sex, both blatant and implied, for me.

Parts I did like: The developing rela
Sally Stackhouse
Jun 22, 2016 rated it liked it
Historical fiction set in America 1860 – I found the historical aspect of this novel interesting as I know little to nothing about American history.

The style of writing was good, well written prose. I did have trouble believing that a young woman, 19 years old, could carry off masquerading as a young boy for as long as she did. Descriptions of the hardships endured, relationships made and tragedies make up this particular novel and kept me reading to the end.
Susi Wright
Jun 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fans of western
It's a while since I picked up a western and this was a great welcome back to the genre. It's a captivating, well-written historical western adventure, with a healthy dose of tasteful romance. This intiguing story has plenty of action in a well-paced, beautifully descriptive style which kept me turning the pages. I really liked the characters, especially the plucky Barleigh and the protective Hughes, the tough but tender ranger who is tasked to find her. A very satisfying read. ...more
Trisha Sroka
Apr 27, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I loved this story. A new twist on a love story and a history lesson as well. It was interesting learning about the pony express. While the deception of the main character isn't a new concept, the interaction between the main character's and their story is a new and exciting twist. I am anxiously awaiting book two's release, to see how the story plays out. This book is a must read. ...more
Debra Ledford
Apr 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
One of the best books I've read for a while. I prefer not to know what is going to happen in the book within the first chapter. This book has many twists and turns. It is well researched and interesting. ...more
Fawn Barrington
Jun 23, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Orphan Moon was such an exhilarating novel. I was unable to put it down! Now I am anxiously awaiting the sequel to be published.
Jun 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

This book was quite different from what I usually read. It is very well written and the characters have a life of their own. This book is mostly about Barleigh’s life as Bar, orphan and Pony Express rider. But it also tells the tale of the mother Barleigh had been told died giving birth to her. And also the story of Hughes and his relationship with Barleigh’s mother, his search for Barleigh, and finding love as well as his friend’s daughter.
The Wild West was a place that has as much
Mar 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Captivating story.

I did enjoy reading this book.
Bar had more courage then a whole stable of grown men.
Burt i do believe that some of the storyline was cut short in places.
Janet Cardillo
May 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Pony express explained

I enjoyed this book immensely and could not put it down. The research done by the author is evident and adds to the richness of the story..
Judy Crites
May 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Women can do anything

I loved that she hid her identity and accomplished what she did. Fortitude and courage was her mantra and she got a handsome man in the end
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As a young girl and long before she could remember remembering, there were two things in T.K. Lukas’s life: books, and horses. And mostly, the books she read were about horses.
When T.K. reached twelve years of age, her father surprised her with a birthday gift—her very own horse—a palomino gelding named “Thomas Dandy.” Dan, as she called him, was the first male to whom she gladly gave her heart.

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