I admit I worry about second in series books. I keep hearing that they are often disappointing, failing to live up to the first. But I’m finding that with Mary Connealy, this is not the case. Her follow up to No Way Up has made me rethink my “I’m not really into Westerns” stance.
Picking up the story immediately after the events of book one, the Bodens slowly learn that the threat to their land grant are wider spread and deeper than they knew. There is talk of revolution, and danger abounds. But in the midst of this, Justin Boden begins to care deeply for Angie Dupree, the widow who fell into his arms in No Way Up. Angie begins to care for Justin as well, though she fights the attraction and her tendency to be meekly obedient as she works to become a stronger person.
Justin was torn between knocking Heath’s hands off his sister and taking notes. He’d never had much luck with women, but then he’d been mighty busy on the ranch and hadn’t missed them. Much. (p.57)
While the novel does feature Angie and Justin’s budding love, and their romance is a sweet one, it is the storyline that the stage is set for in the prequel novella, The Boden Birthright, that is the main focus. The mystery and peril of the threat to the Cimarron Ranch remains very much at the center of everything.
The continuing storyline is one I am really enjoying, and I especially enjoyed how present all of the Bodens are in this novel, including the newest member. I also very much enjoyed the interactions between Angie and Justin, particularly their misunderstandings which had me laughing.
She turned away, probably wishing her cheeks weren’t quite so pink. Justin was so grateful to be distracted from the trouble they faced that he could have hugged her. Except that would be stupid. (pp.32-33)
Set in 1880’s New Mexico, this is a historical fiction trilogy best read and enjoyed in order. I highly recommend it to anyone who enjoys a rollicking good time, complete with cowboys, horses, danger, faith, humor, a bit of climbing, and a bit of sweet romance. I am so looking forward to book 3, Too Far Down, due out this November. I’m seriously considering, once book 3 is published, sending an entire set to my Zane Grey and John Wayne loving 94 year old Grandmother. I think she is a future Mary Connealy fan.
Long Time Gone (Cimarron Legacy #2) by Mary Connealy | Bethany House, March 2017 | paperback, 304 pages
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This review refers to a finished copy received through the publisher’s blogger review program. All opinions expressed are my own.