About the book: Meredith Hayes has dreamed about Travis Archer for years—ever since he rescued her when she was a little girl. When she sees the chance to repay the favor and rescue him, she doesn't hesitate—but her desire to help leaves her reputation in shreds, and Travis sees no other option but to marry her. Marrying Travis is a dream come true for Meredith, but will he ever see her as more than another responsibility?
My take: You know how some books just grab you from the first page? Short Straw Bride was like that for me. Once I started reading, I wanted to keep going until I'd devoured the entire novel.
Short Straw Bride is a marriage of convenience story (my favorite plot device!) with a twist, as the heroine has been dreaming about marrying the hero for 12 years. Both Meri and Travis are flawed characters—Meri is headstrong and independent, and Travis is overprotective and stubborn—but their flaws made them seem more realistic and likable. I enjoyed watching their relationship's progression, and at times their chemistry practically lept off the page.
Though a few events in the story seemed contrived merely as a way to keep Travis and Meri from getting together too quickly, most of the plot was unique and entertaining. I especially enjoyed the subplot involving Travis's brother Jim and Meri's cousin Cassie, and I'd love for Witemeyer to write a sequel so I could find out what happens to Travis's other brothers, Neill and Crockett.
This is a light, thoroughly enjoyable read—one of the best historical romances I've read recently! 4-1/2 stars.
About the author: Karen Witemeyer holds a master's degree in psychology from Abilene Christian University and is a member of ACFW, RWA, and the Abilene Writers Guild. A CBA bestselling author, 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 in 2011. Karen lives in Abilene, Texas, with her husband and three children. Visit Karen's Web site at www.karenwitemeyer.com.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free for review from Bethany House Publishers through their book reviewer program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."
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