Against Shannon's wishes, love stakes its claim in her heart. Will she discover treasure or treachery? When Shannon Adair accompanies her minister father to the western gold rush town of Grand Coeur, she's certain she'll never be happy away from her beloved Virginia, even though the South is still gripped in civil war. Wells Fargo driver Matthew Dubois isn't sure the lovely Shannon belongs in Idaho Territory either, but he is a desperate man. His widowed sister is dying and leaving her young son, Todd, in his care. If Matthew ever wants to return to driving coach for the express company--and he does mean to return to it--he'll need a wife to look after the boy when he's away. Shannon is determined not to lose her heart to a man who is neither a Southerner nor a gentleman. But love stakes its claim. Now, will her heart survive learning the truth behind the courtship?
Heart of Gold by Robin Lee Hatcher is a delightful faith-based historical romance. This novel takes place in Grand Coeur, part of the Idaho Territory during the Civil War. It touches on the north and the south, immigration, and accepting through faith people from all walks of life. At its heart it shares the struggles of Shannon Adair as she follows her heart.
Shannon is a minister’s daughter, who thanks to her deceased mother was raised in privilege in southern Virginia. She has lost her fiancé to the war, and has spent the past few years working as a nurse for the South. When her father feels a calling and accepts a job as a minister in the western gold town of Grand Coeur, Shannon makes the journey with him. She is heart-broken about leaving her friends and shocked by the people she meets. She meets and takes an instant dislike to Wells Fargo drive Matthew Dubois when he declares, no alliance to either side of the war. When Matthew seeks the minister’s help in finding someone to care for his dying sister and her young son; Shannon accepts the position. She soon realizes her opinions of Matthew may be wrong. The tale that unfolds is delightful, as the dying sister sets about finding a mother for her son and a wife for Matthew. The romance that develops between Matthew and Shannon is sweet but not without competition as a young southern gentleman, looks to court Shannon as well. It was a delightful experience watching Shannon discover that there is more to a man’s character then where he was born.
Hatcher captures this raw territory and the people who reside their beautifully. I found the tales regarding the Wells Fargo stage coach and the war to be fascinating. She touches on the trials of the gold rush, the brothels and the troubles Chinese immigrants faced in the West. While this novel’s faith-based message was a little too heavily salted for my taste, I still enjoyed the tale. The characters, especially Matthew’s sister touched my heart and made the love story all the more surreal.
I highly recommend Heart of Gold to fans of Christian historical romances and fiction. Heart of Gold is available in paper and eBook formats. I look forward to reading more of this award winning author’s work.
I want to thank Booksneeze and Thomas Nelson Publishing for providing this ARC in exchange for my unbiased review.
I gave this novel 4 coffee cups out of 5.
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Labels: faith-based, historical romance, Robin Lee Hatcher