Release Day Review: Knight on the Texas Plains by Linda Broday

Genres: Historical Romance, Western
Publication Date: August 1, 2017


Duel McClain was no knight in shining armor --- he was a drifter who prided himself on having no responsibilities. But a poker game thrust him into the role of father to an abandoned baby, and then a condemned woman stumbled up to his campfire. The fugitive beauty aimed to keep him at shotgun's length, but obvious maternal instincts belied her fierce demeanor. And she and the baby were clearly made for each other. Worse, the innocent infant and the alleged murderess opened Duel's heart, made him long for the love of a real family. And the only way to have that would be to slay the demons of the past. 



His boots crunched on the hard ground when he stood. Jessie seemed oblivious to him as he strode to retrieve the child’s bottle from the bedroll. The mysterious woman was once again lost somewhere inside herself. Lost and so alone.

“I’m taking Marley Rose home to Tranquility.” He tugged the nipple off the bottle. It released with a plop, and the smell of curdled milk reached his nose. “Phew. Girl, didn’t know you’d be so darn much trouble.”

Marley giggled excitedly, riding piggyback to the creek to rinse out the container. Jessie had moved to the campfire when he returned. The forlorn look etched shadows across her face as she stared into the flames.

“You’re welcome to join us if you’ve a mind. Lord knows I need help with this young’un.” Something wet ran down his back. He could hazard a pretty good guess what it was. This baby business was no bed of roses.

Luckily, he managed to fill the bottle after missing the opening only a few times. Pulling the rubber nipple over the top proved the biggest challenge. It appeared to have shrunk when he took it off, because he didn’t see any way in hell of getting it to fit.

“Let me.” Jessie had crept up beside him again. The ghostly way she moved gave him the willies.

Their hands touched when she took the two items, making her jerk back in alarm. Sheer terror contorted her features into a mask.

“You all right?” He’d never felt so helpless. What could a man say to ease the torment of a woman who’d suffered what she had? It would take more comforting words than he knew.

She didn’t reply, just ran her tongue cautiously across her bottom lip. Then, before he could blink, she melded nipple and bottle together, once again proving herself to be capable and efficient, important things in raising a child.

“Much obliged.” Duel accepted the fully assembled bottle.

Light fingertips brushed his bare skin when she lifted Marley Rose from her perch. He reasoned it was the heat of the sun’s rays that caused the beads of perspiration dotting his forehead. Had to be. He ducked his head, hoping she couldn’t read his thoughts. He must have lost every lick of sense he had. The last thing on earth he needed was a woman. And the way she recoiled from him clearly expressed her view of men.

Relieved of the babe, he dove into his saddlebags for the extra shirt he carried. Pulling it on, he could hardly button it fast enough. Covering his chest made him feel a whole lot better. Not much he could do about his wet trousers though. The wind would have to dry them.

His growling stomach reminded him of the rabbits he’d killed. That blasted goat had taken too much time. Better get a move on or the sun would be overhead before he knew it.

“I could sure use your help, ma’am. That is, if you want to come along.” Now that he was fully clothed, he could glance at her directly. Jessie had found a seat on the large rock he’d propped
against during the night. She cradled Marley in her arms as if she was a precious treasure. The girl’s noisy sucking on the fresh goat milk blended with the animal’s protesting bleats.

The woman’s attention appeared to rest solely on Marley Rose. She caressed the dark curls. “What would you want in return?”

Given what she’d gone through, her suspicion was expected, right down to the stony grit in her tone.

“Only your kindness with the babe, nothing more.”

When she swung her head in his direction, he matched her intent gaze with honesty. “Make you a deal. I swear on the McClain family Bible I’ll never lay a hand on you. I offer you safekeeping. When we get to Tranquility, I’ll see you get any place you want to go.”

“You promise?” Jessie’s voice broke.

Duel didn’t make deals lightly. “The word of a McClain has stood the test of war, famine, flood, and pestilence. I come from a long line of promise-makers. Heck, my grandfather once parted the Colorado River with his cane because he gave his word.”

That brought a hint of a smile to Jessie’s lips. “You’ve got yourself a deal, mister.”

At that, Marley Rose raised her head and grinned as if to say she was relieved to have someone along with good horse sense.

“Drop the ‘mister.’ Name’s Duel.” He threw it out offhand, trying to sound nonchalant as he bent to the task of gutting and skinning the rabbits.


Afbeeldingsresultaat voor 4 stars

**ARC provided in exchange for an honest review**

Historical Western Romances have a special place in my heart. I just love the simple, pure, raw and hard-working lifestyle many had back in those days. It wasn't an easy time period to be alive, but it was very rewarding. The blurb of Knight of the Texas Plains piqued my interest. One of the reasons that made me decide to read this story was because of the main character Duel, who was thrust into the role of father to an abandoned baby. I just love when there is a child involved in the story, the interaction between child and parent is beautiful to read. Duel doesn't really know what to do with the cute baby girl Marley Rose. He tries to keep a distance but eventually he bonds with the baby. 

Jessie stumbled up to his campfire in bruises, and Duel does what any gentleman would do and offers her a safe place to spend the night. Jessie is a very strong and caring character. I loved how she took to the baby right away and how the clueless Duel asks for her help with the baby. Both Duel and Jessie keep their distance because of their own reasons and things that happened in their past. However Jessie learns what a loyal, honest, protective and honorable man Duel is and her feelings for him change. I loved that the author took her time to develop their relationship with both each other and Marley Rose. Marley definitely stole many hearts in this book, including mine! There was a very open communication between Duel and Jessie, which I really appreciated. I can't wait to read the next book in the Texas Heroes series. Hopefully Duel's brother Luke will get his own story.

Afbeeldingsresultaat voor about the author

Linda BrodayI live in the Texas Panhandle on land they call the Llano Estacado where the Native Americans once roamed. History is so thick here with the ghosts of the people who settled this land. I love writing western historical romance and can't imagine writing anything else. I love a man in a Stetson and tight pants. Oh man! Those cowboys sure make my heart beat faster.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you so much for having me. I love being here at Silence is Read. And than you for the awesome review. Yes, Luke McClain gets his own story. It comes out in Febrary - The Cowboy Who Came Calling. And in May, the baby Marley Rose is all grown up and discovers the secret of being won in a poker game.


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