Series: Mountain Dreams,
Published by Misty M. Beller Books on 2014-9-23
Length: 310 pages
Reviewing eBook from My Book Shelf
Leah Townsend, a recently orphaned heiress, flees Richmond after discovering her fiancé’s plot to kill her after their wedding. She needs a safe place to hide, and finds herself accepting a newspaper marriage proposal from a God-fearing young rancher in the Montana Territory. But when Leah arrives at the mountain ranch, she learns her intended husband was killed by a grizzly, leaving behind a bitter older brother and a spunky younger sister.
When Gideon Bryant finds a city girl standing in his log cabin, his first thought is to send her back where she came from. He’s lost too many people to the wild elements of these mountains––his parents, his wife, and now his brother. His love for this untamed land lives on, but he’s determined not to open his heart to another person.
But when an accident forces Leah to stay at the ranch for seven more months, can Gideon protect his heart from a love he doesn’t want? Has Leah really escaped the men who seek her life?
The Lady and the Mountain Man by Misty M. Beller may very well be one of my all-time favorite books! I’m a sucker for historical fiction and when it is written well, as this one is, with a sweet romance AND it’s CLEAN, well you’ve got yourself a winning story 😀 Leah Townsend flees her home when she learns that her betrothed plans to kill her on her wedding night in order to secure her inheritance. Needing somewhere to hide that he cannot find her, she answers an ad for a bride in the Montana territory. There’s only one problem: her groom is dead, leaving behind his brother and baby sister to tend the ranch.
Leah is a wonderful character! She is strong, independent, and full of faith. Throughout her entire journey, she prays for guidance and direction, which is how she lands on Gideon Bryant’s doorstep. She trusts that even with the surly rancher there is a reason God placed her there and she is determined to find out what that is. She’s kind, caring, willing to learn. She isn’t the spoiled brat you’d think she’d be, being the heiress to an oil company. Instead no matter what she faces, she faces it head on. Her betrothed wants to kill her? Ok she runs. Her hopeful groom is dead? Ok what can she do to help his surviving family on the ranch. Breaks a leg? Ok, what can she do from her bed to help. THAT my friends is the kind of attitude you want in your main character. She wasn’t whiny, didn’t have the poor me attitude, NO. She was great 😀
And Gideon….I may be in love! The author was smart in her writing, alternating POV between Leah and Gideon. Gideon is surly, grieving, and doesn’t have much use for God. He can be hateful and caring all at the same time. When you get this from Leah’s perspective, you see a man that is hurting and lashing out. When you read it from Gideon’s POV, you’re heart will break for him. He’s so lost in his grief. As the synopsis says, he’s lost everyone he’s ever cared for except: his parents, his wife, now his brother. The one thing that keeps him going is his baby sister. She needs him. So he works the ranch from daylight to dark to provide for her.
This story is as much about the romance as it is about finding your way back to God. It’s a story about faith and lost faith and everything in between. Leah shows up in Gideon’s life at a time when he has lost his way and she is the shining light that brings him back. Honestly I was moved to tears more than once reading their story. Yes it has romance, heart-breaking as it may be, but it is a love story about how one person can save another, not through romance, but kindness and caring when it is missing.
Overall I loved this story! I didn’t want it to ever end. Leah and Gideon are both such amazing characters and reading how much they change throughout the course of the book is nothing short of beautiful. Besides these two, there is Gideon’s baby sister Miriam who is the bright spot in both their daily lives. If you are looking for a good, clean romance, set in the 1870s with Christian influence throughout, I highly suggest you grab this one. I’ve recently purchased the entire series and have no doubt that I will love them just as much as this one!