Trail of Kisses
by Merry Farmer
Page Count: 226
Release Date: October 27, 2014
How got: free copy direct from publisher
First attention getter: romance on the Oregon Trail
Someone is trying to kill Lynne Tremaine. After her father sentences two members of The Briscoe Boys gang to death, Judge Tremaine feels he has no choice but to send Lynne to Denver City along the Oregon Trail to live with her Uncle George…against her will. For Lynne, the only thing worse than being sent away to the wild west is making the journey with the handsome, arrogant, wicked man her uncle has hired to escort her. Especially when the anger she feels toward him begins to turn to something hotter.
Cade Lawson is determined to prove himself to his employer, George Tremaine, after letting him down months earlier. But what he thought would be his second chance may, in fact, be a harsh punishment for his past mistakes. Lynne is headstrong, fiery, and determined to show him she is fearless. She is also beautiful and tempting, and when Cade sees just how afraid she really is underneath her brave act, he may be in danger of losing his heart to her forever. When her would-be killer attacks, it’s all he can do to keep Lynne safe.
He swore to protect her, but who will protect him from her?
Star Rating - 3
A fairly middle of the road romance, this work doesn’t really have much that makes it stand out. It’s an enjoyable read but not outstanding.
The author sets a nice scene, with enough description to give the reader a clear picture of the events portrayed. I liked the different hardships of the trail she incorporated: thunderstorms, stampedes, and river crossings. Though at times, it seemed like she was trying to incorporate too much. I mean, if a wagon train experienced all that this one did, it’s a surprise that anyone would have had the courage to brave this journey. The only thing missing was an Indian raid.
Our two leads were enjoyable. I liked Cade and his no-nonsense approach to things. He was dedicated to protecting Lynne on her journey west. Lynne, however, I’m a bit more ambivalent on. I liked her spunk and personal courage. She wasn’t afraid to speak her mind and protect herself if needed. Yet, too often, she’d go to the extreme. She’d insist too hard that she could protect herself and flout society’s expectations too much. There’s being assertively independent and then there’s being too annoying about it.
The whole suspense/murder plot thing was more annoying than entertaining. I mean, really, this guy can’t just slit her throat and have done with it? He’s got to leave all these “spooky” threats and teases along the trail. Seems more incompetent than threatening. More melodrama than suspenseful. And also, I could see who the guy was a mile away. What the heck was Cade smoking that he couldn’t see what this guy was?!
So a good way to spend a few hours, but don’t go out of your way to find this title. Solid characters for the most part are a plus, with a few slides into annoying land. Nice description helps visualization of the scenery and events. But an overly melodramatic plot and other issues plague this title. I wouldn’t advise against reading this, but there are better ones out there.
Note: Book received for free from publisher in exchange for an honest review.