Book Review: The Outlaw Takes a Bride by Susan Page Davis

Title:           The Outlaw Takes a Bride

Author:       Susan Page Davis

Publisher:   Shiloh Run Press, imprint of Barbour Publishing Inc, 2015, 320 pages (paperback)

Review Copy Source: NetGalley

I just may have to add Susan Page Davis to my very short “I will read anything by this author” list under Inspirational Fiction (aka Christian Romance) if I continue to enjoy her books as much as I have Captive Trail and now The Outlaw Takes a Bride. It doesn’t hurt that these books have had premises that align so closely with my tastes in this type of fiction, or that I find myself really liking her characters.

The Outlaw Takes a Bride is a story that involves a mail-order bride, outlaws, and mistaken identity.   Johnny Paynter is on the run, after his friend Cam lets him know that he is a suspected murderer. They flee to Texas and Johnny’s brother’s ranch, but find Mark Paynter dead of bullet wounds. After being mistaken for his brother in town, Johnny follows Cam’s advice and lets everyone think that he is Mark. Including the mail-order bride that arrives within a matter of days.

Sally Golding is a god-fearing woman who stayed with her non-christian and difficult husband until his death. Widowed, she lives as the unpaid housekeeper of a pastor and his wife, taking in sewing as her sole income. Having corresponded with Mark Paynter for some time, it was a relief when this upstanding Christian rancher proposed and sent money for her train fare from Saint Louis, Missouri to Beaumont, Texas. But when she arrives, he seems different from the man she fell in love with through letters. Shyer, but respectful and a good man though overly influenced by his friend Cam, who makes her uncomfortable, and sometimes backsliding in his Christianity.

Nicely, though sometimes simplistically, written and an engaging story. There is enough excitement outside of the storylines of Johnny’s mistaken identity and marital adjustments/difficulties to keep the plot humming along. Murderers, outlaws and bandits do tend to add an element of danger which contrasts nicely with the evenings spent reading the bible as a newly married couple.

4 out of 5 stars. Recommended for anyone who enjoys westerns, outlaws, mail-order brides and a sweet romance. And the book promo on YouTube is lovely: https:

This review refers to an ebook copy received from the publisher via NetGalley, in return for an honest review. This is actually a second reading, as I first read it as a library ebook. I requested the NetGalley copy because the hold list was so long and I didn’t want to wait to be able to review it (I felt I had waited too long after reading the library ebook to be able to write a fair review, hence the desire to reread when I have so many books already on my physical TBR shelves). It is quite likely that I will buy a physical copy of this book sometime in the future.


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