The New York Times bestselling author of Cover of Night returns to her Western Ladies series with this passionate and suspenseful romance between a doctor and an outlaw.
Annie Parker came to Silver Mesa, Arizona, because it was the only place she’d found where folks thought a woman doctor was better than no doctor at all. Her lonely life became harder still on the winter night Rafe McCay broke into her office with a bullet in his side and a bounty hunter at his back.
With a gun aimed at her heart, he led her deep into the Arizona mountains, and into a world of danger and passion, for Annie discovered in Rafe not only a wounded man, but a soul betrayed. Rafe, healed by her skill and the magic in her hands, awakened in Annie a woman’s tender longing and hungry desire. Pursued by dangerous secrets of the past, they are swept into a thrilling odyssey of the heart—a bold, exhilarating journey that rekindles Rafe’s lost hope and transforms Annie’s healing gift into a deep, enduring love.
After four years on the run, outlaw Rafferty (Rafe) McCay's face wears ``the remote expression of a man who had seen and caused so much death that it no longer touched him.'' Annie Parker is the lone doctor in boomtown Silver Mesa, a woman with a ``worn, weary look'' but with ``softness in her brown eyes'' and healing magic in her hands. An unlikelier pair could not be found, yet fate and a gunshot wound throw them together in Howard's ( Angel Creek ) new novel, set in Arizona territory in the 1870s . When Rafe forces Annie to come along and tend his gunshot wound, what begins as a kidnapping flowers into passion and love, but Howard's set-up is so obvious that her protagonists' coupling--the only real touch of fire in this book--is never really in doubt. Minimal tension provided by several run-ins with bounty hunters leads to the maximal tension of myriad graphic sexual encounters. Slowed down by redundancy and verbosity, Howard's tale wends its way cross-country towards its rather inevitable happy conclusion, with one truly moving segment wherein Rafe and Annie risk their lives to treat a settlement of seriously ill Apaches.
Not Her Best Work
This “alpha” hero is more of an arse, and the first half of the book is a horror story. Well written, as is everything by Ms. Howard, but the subject matter is unappealing.
Touch of fire
Entertained me I fell in love with the characters. Not one of my fav's but a good read.