Review: Saving Grace by Sandy James

Posted June 6, 2013 by Tracy in Reviews | 1 Comment

Grace Riley is on the run—from her past and from her fears. The victim of a violent rape at the hands of a rich politician’s son, she must “disappear” to escape his constant attempts to recapture her. Moving from cattle drive to cattle drive as a cook, she avoids her tormentor for nearly twenty years. When she discovers that the brother she gave up for adoption after their mother died in childbirth was orphaned at an early age, she is frantic to verify that he’s safe. She tracks him to a cattle ranch in Montana.

Widower Adam Morgan owns the Twin Springs ranch, but finds himself falling into a life of loneliness. Although he enjoys spending time with his grown daughter and the two men he rescued when they were living on the streets, he longs to meet a woman he can love. Living in the Montana territory where men greatly outnumber women makes finding a new wife difficult. Weary of working cattle, he is ready to make some changes in his life.

Grace falls ill on her journey, but she manages to make it to the Twin Springs ranch where her brother is supposed to be living. Adam takes her in, concerned for her health and the reason she’s searching for one of his adopted sons. Their chemistry is immediate and intense, but can Grace heal from her past of pain and fear? When her secrets are finally revealed, can Adam forgive her deceptions and learn to love again?

Grace has been running her whole life. She was raped when she was just a few months past her 14th birthday and pursued by that same man for the past 20 or so years. Seeking the son that came of that rape she finally breaks down and asks for help from her attacker, Stephen Shay. When they meet face to face once again he tries to attack her once again and she shoots him. Think Stephen is dead she heads to Montana from San Francisco to find her son, Jake (Stephen doesn’t know he exists). When she arrives in Montana at the home Jake is supposedly living in she’s incredibly ill and collapses on the porch. The owner of the home, Adam Morgan, gets Grace into his home and nurses her back to health with the help of his adult daughter, Victoria.

Adam is a kind man and takes his duties as nurse for Grace, very seriously. While she is recuperating Adam falls in love with Grace and she with him. Unfortunately Grace is determined to meet Jake and then leave so that she doesn’t bring the law down on Adam and his family now that she’s a murderess. Adam is having none of it and wants to keep Grace safe, especially when he discovers that she’s not safe at all.

While this is happening Matthew, Grace’s brother, is falling in love with Adam’s daughter, Victoria. They are both stubborn and they argue constantly but they each feel the pull of the other. Matthew wants Victoria but feels he’s not good enough for this woman who was raised with wealth while he has nothing, not even a home.

Jake, who is told by Grace that he is her brother, had recently married and is expecting his first child. He’s not exactly happy to have Grace and Matthew in his life and feels that he was the discarded brother. Grace has a hard time breaking through his hard outer shell to get to the softer inside.

While western historical romance is not my go-to genre, I really enjoyed Saving Grace. There were a lot of things to like about this book and the author did a great job in showing the different facets of all of the characters personalities.

Grace was amazing and she really was a person that I admired. After living through the horrible rape she knew that she wasn’t safe from Stephen, or her father for that matter. She immediately took Matthew, who was only 8 at the time and left home. She had virtually no money and nowhere to go but she cared for Matthew and survived. She didn’t feel amazing, which is obvious in the book, but she truly was a fighter.

Adam was a great guy. He had found Jake living in Denver and eating out of garbage cans (part of Jake’s back story that I won’t share right now) and took him in, along with another boy and raised him as his own son. Though life was different back then I don’t know many who would be so generous and so trusting of two ruffians. He loved his family and friends and was kind, loyal and protective of them. This included Grace and Matthew eventually.

Adam fell in love with Grace during her recuperation. We were told of how they spent their days together and played chess or he read to her, etc. but we weren’t shown that part of the friendship/budding romance and I think that had an effect on my appreciation of their romance. I loved the couple and wanted them together but as we didn’t get to see it happening it almost felt like it happened too fast when in fact it didn’t, at least not for the time period. We did get to see the interactions between Victoria and Matthew and I enjoyed those scenes immensely – watching them verbally spar was great

Overall I thought this was a good read with likable characters. A good story and an interesting conflict I thought it was realistic to the time period. I like James’s writing style so I look forward to seeing what this series brings to us next.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5

Sandy James 

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