Lorie's Reviews > A Texan's Promise

A Texan's Promise by Shelley Gray
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's review
Apr 12, 2011

really liked it
bookshelves: review-book, netgalley, western
Read from April 15 to 23, 2011

A Texan’s Promise is the first book in a new series, Heart of a Hero, by Shelley Gray. This is the first non-Amish fiction book I’ve read by this author who also writes under the name Shelley Shepard Gray. The author classified this as a Western. I never really thought I enjoyed Western’s and never would have read it if I had not read the Amish books written by the author. I loved the historical fiction parts of the book and since I love historical fictions, this book fit right in with what I enjoy reading.
The story starts off when Clayton Proffitt, foreman of the Circle Z ranch in Texas, finds Vanessa Grant drying in the barn. When Vanessa’s father was on his deathbed, Clayton promised him that he would look out for Vanessa. He discovers belt marks on her back and she finally tells Clayton that her drunken step father tried to take advantage of her and when she would not let him, he beat her. Clayton promises Vanessa that he will take her away from her step father. They prepare for the journey while her step father is passed out. They start on the long trail to go to Clayton’s sister’s ranch out west. The trail is dangerous as many Indians are along the trail and the fact that Vanessa’s father and her brother, Miles, are right behind on the trail. Clayton and Vanessa finally reach one of Clayton’s old friend’s home. They stay the night there. The reader is lead to believe that these two share a very special relationship. They end up getting married so Vanessa’s reputation will not be ruined after going off on the trail with Clayton. But the marriage is in name only. The couple travel on to Clayton’s sister’s ranch and then Clayton leaves to find work as a sheriff in a western town. Will Clayton and Vanessa ever be able to tell each other how they really feel? Will Vanessa’s step father ever find them? Will there be a happy ever after for Vanessa? You have to read the book to find those answers.
I really enjoyed this book. It got my attention from chapter one. I really like books when they can get my attention that soon in the book. The book seemed to keep going from there with lots of action. I loved the tender romance of Clayton and Vanessa. I thought it was kind of weird that they would get together with such an age difference. In the book we also learn about Vanessa’s brother, Miles. He feels stuck because he wants to help his sister, but feels like he must help his step father too. Miles finally learns to accept God in his life and decides he will do what’s right. I loved how Miles, Vanessa, and even Clayton learned to rely on the Lord for help during the trails they went through in their lives. I also hated that the step father had rights in the eyes of the law even though he abuses her, but I think that was just that time period. Overall, I loved the book and can’t wait to read the second book in this series.
I was given an e-copy of this book through Net Galley and Abingdon Press Publishing. I was not required to give a positive review, but an honest one. This book comes out October 2011. I would recommend it to readers who enjoy romance, historical fiction, or readers who enjoyed the authors Amish fiction novels.

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Lorie The first couple chapters were awesome! Not what happens but it really gets you into the story. Shelley calls this a Western and I don't really think I've ever thought of Westerns as something I want to read, but I like this one so far :)

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