Genres: Historical Romance, Western
Published by Sourcebooks Casablanca on February 07, 2012 (Reprint from July 1994)
Purchase Links: Amazon ✦ Barnes & Noble
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Lettie MacBride knew that joining a wagon train heading West was her chance to begin anew, far from the devastating memories of the night that had changed her forever. She didn't believe she could escape the pain of innocence lost or feel desire for any man...until she meets Luke Fontaine.
Haunted by his own secrets, Luke could never blame Lettie for what had happened in the past. One glance at the pretty red-haired lass was enough to fill the handsome, hard-driving pioneer with a savage hunger.
Against relentless snows, murderous desperadoes, and raiding Sioux, Luke and Lettie will face a heartrending choice: abandon a lawless land before it destroys them, or fight for their...Wildest Dreams.
Lynn’s Thoughts. . . .
This book is written in four parts. It’s a history lesson of sorts with romance written into it. It shows the struggles of a couple building a life for themselves and their family.
Part I: April 1863
There is a war going on between the North and South. Luke Fontaine is seen heading West to the part of the country called Montana. He has something to prove to both his father and his brother. Even before the wagons head out there’s some excitement.
One person he meets in all the excitement is a two year old named Nathan. His mother’s name is Eletta MacBride Dougan. We see the immediate attraction between Luke and Lettie. As they continue to head West, Rosanne gives us a hint that their attraction is growing.
Luke ends up marrying Lettie and they head off to Montana. They settle into their new home and make new friends, Will Doolan and his wife Henny. Rosanne shows us the type of life that the new settlers had to go through to carve a life out for themselves. It also makes you think how easy we have things now. Would we have been able to survive back then?
Rosanne is not very explicit with some of her love scenes. She leaves a lot to your imagination. She concentrates more on their life experiences than on the sex. Sex is not the main theme of this story.
Part II: August 1872
Nine years has past and Lettie has a reunion with her family. She also has several children now. Her family catches her up on everything that’s happened since they parted ways. The land has also changed in that time. In part two, Rosanne also includes the story of the prodigal son.
Luke is well on his way to having all his dreams come true. But the land has also changed Luke. We think that now things are going to be fine for the Fountaine’s but then Rosanne puts in a twist. She also shows what the pioneer women were made of. In my mind I could almost picture this as a John Wayne movie (I’m dating myself). I could see John Wayne as Luke and Maureen O’Hara as Lettie.
Part III: January 1876
Almost four years have passed and Rosanne shows that Montana is still a harsh place to live. It can change a person’s personality. It’s a story that will have you smiling in some spots and want to cry in others.
In that part of the country, the law was just getting started so that landowners were taking matters into their own hands. We see a family that has endured so much but love is the strongest thing that holds them together. This story also shows how families formed their towns.
The Fontaine family always seems to have things that disrupt their family circle. Nothing ever seems to go easy for them. It takes a long time to see all the dreams that Luke has come true – maybe a little too long. It depends on your point of view.
Part IV: July 1881
Another five years has passed. In that time we see that the Fontaine family has grown even more. Ways of thinking have also changed. Some things that have not changed is that it’s still the Fontaine’s vs the land. We see how the children have changed and grown into adults.
We are shown how the Indians were treated after they were forced to live on the Reservations. We are also shown the prejudices that occurred during that point in our country’s history. Montana is also on its way to becoming a state.
This is a story that is longer than some romance novels. If you are expecting a straight forward romance, you will not find it here. If you like historical books, you will love learning some of the history of Montana. Do you like westerns that have a hero that is a little rough around the edges? Having so many pages, I don’t think I could have gotten through it if it weren’t for the fact that Rosanne separated it out into parts. (Reviewed by Lynn from Romance Reader Enthusiast)