Escaping the ravages of the Civil War, a gently reared lady must leave behind everything she knows -- and trust her life and her future to a dangerous gunfighter with a passion for vengeance.
A team of prize Arabian horses is all that Willow Moran has left—and Caleb Black is the only man who can help her reach her brother in the Colorado Rockies. But she fears this stranger who burns to avenge the wrongs of treacherous men. For Caleb is as wild and unpredictable as the uncivilized land he loves. Yet, though she challenges him at every turn, the spirited southern lady knows this proud, enigmatic loner is her destiny. And no matter what peril awaits, they must face it together—for Willow has become a fever in Caleb's blood . . . awakening a need so fierce that he would defeat the devil himself to possess her.
In this tedious historical romance, Lowell ( Tell Me No Lies ) gives barely enough plot to keep a short story moving. Willow Moran, a West Virginian who lost her parents and most of her possessions during the Civil War, is traveling west with her remaining valuables--five Arabian horses--to find her brother Matt, who is prospecting for gold. Her guide from Denver to the San Juan mountains is former Army scout Caleb Black who, unbeknownst to Willow, also is hunting Matt; on her deathbed, after bearing an illegitimate baby, Caleb's sister named Matt as her seducer. The largely uneventful journey, complicated only by ruffians who are pursuing them (to steal Willow's horses and finish a fight begun in Denver with Caleb), occupies a substantial portion of the book: Willow and Caleb spend much of their time riding, eating and lusting after each other. By the time the hero, ``with a silent curse at his unruly desires,'' indulges in yet another assessment of the heroine, wondering ``how her hair would feel spilling over his naked skin,'' the reader is likely to be silently cursing right along with him--and brother Matt isn't even close to being on the horizon.
Riveting to the end
So glad I discovered Elizabeth Lowell. I enjoy her characters and her plots. They are alive and enjoyable.