‘Montana Bride’ by Joan Johnston

mb jjSTORY: A Desperate Deception
The Promise Of Forever

When Karl Norwood’s mail-order bride meets an untimely demise on the way to the Montana Territory, Hetty Wentworth steps in to take her place. Hetty has no idea how she’s going to pretend to be all the things she isn’t—including the mother of two kids. She only knows her deception is necessary if she’s going to save two orphans from the awful fate she suffered as a child.

Karl smells a rat when a much younger woman than he was expecting arrives with two children who look nothing like her. But his mail-order bride is so beautiful, he doesn’t object—until he realizes that his charming new wife has been lying . . . about everything. Can a woman forced to keep secrets and a man hindered by distrust ever hope to find happily ever after in each other’s arms?

REVIEW: Ms. Johnson continues her Mail-Order Brides series with Hetty’s story, Hannah’s sister, the one that I was on a war path with in Hannah’s story. Holy Crap! She might have driven me to murder were I her sister! If there was trouble to be had, she was in it to her eyeballs!

She drove me crazy in the beginning of this story but then I slowly warmed up to her, as her character grew, I liked her more and more.

As I mentioned before in my earlier reviews of this series, Ms. Johnson is good when it comes to characterization. Hetty is the proof of that. She created a whiny, shallow and bratty girl and then turned her into a compelling, affectionate and determined woman I couldn’t help but care for.

As for Karl, he was a perfect Beta Hero. As smart, patient and kind man who is plain looking, he thought he hit a jackpot with his beautiful mail-order bride. Hetty on the other hand wasn’t of a similar opinion when it came to her opinion of her groom.

I’ve read all the books in this series and I’ve loved them all equally. I’m chomping at the bit to read Josie’s story in ‘Blackthorne’s Bride’!

If you like western romance then this author and her books, this series included, should be on your list.

Melanie for b2b

Complimentary copy provided by the publisher

‘Texas Bride’ by Joan Johnston

tb jjSTORY: He May Be Her Only Hope. She May Be His Last Chance

Miranda Wentworth never imagined becoming a mail-order bride. Now marriage to a stranger is her only hope of finding a home where she and her two younger brothers can escape the brutality of the Chicago orphanage where they live. With any luck, she can even start a family of her own, once the three of them are settled at Jacob Creed’s Texas ranch. But Miranda has one gigantic concern: Her husband-to-be knows nothing about the brothers she’s bringing along. What if he calls off the deal when he discovers the trick she’s played on him?

Jake Creed is hanging on to his Texas ranch by his fingernails. His nemesis, Alexander Blackthorne, is determined to ruin him. Jake will never give up, but he’s in desperate trouble. His wife died six months ago in childbirth, along with their stillborn son, and his two-year-old daughter needs a mother. The advertisement Jake wrote never mentioned his daughter—or the fact that he has no intention of consummating his marriage. He’s determined never to subject another wife to the burden of pregnancy. But Jake doesn’t count on finding his bride so desirable. He doesn’t count on aching with need when she joins him in bed. And he never suspected his bride would have plans of her own to seduce him.

REVIEW: WARNING! Gushing ahead!!!

Without a doubt, this is a character-driven story which, combined with fast pace and more than one couple to root for, will take you on a journey of self discovery for all characters. Ms. Johnston made sure that her writing was so good that as a reader, I just ‘wanted’! This multidimensional story left me laughing, crying, and definitely wanting more.

I wanted to know about all the kids that were left behind, and I wanted to know what happened to Jake’s father. I adored this book so much that as soon as I was done with it, I wanted to know more about Jake’s mother and her second husband. I NEEDED to know more, so off I went and bought all of the books connected to this dynamic and dynastic family.

I am all in knots waiting for WYOMING BRIDE (Hannah’s story), MONTANA BRIDE (Hetty’s story) and BLACKTHORNE’S BRIDE (Josie’s story). I am not a patient person, so I’m reading all her books while waiting for these to hit the shelves or my Kindle.

Melanie for RRAH

‘Wyoming Bride’ by Joan Johnston

WB JJSTORY: After three months in a mail-order marriage, Hannah Wentworth McMurtry is a widow—pregnant, alone, and near death in the Wyoming wilderness. Though she is saved by a man with a face cut from stone, she still grieves the husband who died on their journey west. Hannah needs a husband, but does she dare marry another stranger?

Flint Creed has also lost someone he loved—when the woman he hoped to marry chose his younger brother instead. Now he must find a ranch wife of his own. But every female in the remote Wyoming Territory is too old, too young, or already married . . . until he discovers Hannah on the prairie. Flint doesn’t pretend to love her, but he doesn’t tell her he loves another woman, either. Hannah doesn’t pretend to love him, but she doesn’t tell him about the child she carries. Though danger surrounds them on the Wyoming frontier, the greatest threats of all are the secrets within—revelations that could destroy the new life Hannah and Flint have begun to cherish.

REVIEW: I was looking forward to reading the second book in this series ever since I read the first one!

Ms. Joan Johnston’s tales are new to me, but I’ve already tracked down almost all of her back list and hope to read them in between my Regency World.

What originally attracted me to this particular series, and for that matter this author, is the way she develops not just her characters, but the families within those stories. Everything about her books just has that feel of ‘saga’. They’re all connected and just sort of ‘grow’ on you…You just get hooked, and once you read one story, off you go to next and on and on!

This time we have Hannah’s story and as much as I liked her, I was on a war path with her twin, Hatty. Holy Crap! She might have driven me to murder were I her sister! If there was trouble to be had, she was in it to her eyeballs!

‘Wyoming Bride’ picked up where ‘Texas Bride’ left off and Hannah is doing exactly what her sister did, marries a man just to save herself and her two sisters, from the orphanage.

It was great to watch Hannah become strong and decisive woman. Like I said, character development seems to be one of many talents Ms. Johnson has.

As for our hero, Flint Creed, I thought him a very complex and it was too much fun being in his head, just waiting for him to figure out that the woman he thinks is his ‘soul mate’ is nothing but an infatuation.

And then we have the secondary characters, Ransom and Emaline, which are as well drawn as the first and following them was even more fun!

There were many times I wanted to strangle this idiotic chick and tell Ransom to drop her like a hot potato!

If you’ve never read any of Joan Johnston’s books, here is what you’re missing: great writing, wonderful three-dimensional characters and stories that have an epic feel to them. She excels in bringing her readers to go through sadness to elation within a paragraph! That’s a gift!

Looking forward to Hatty’s story which will be out later this year, ‘Montana Bride’ and then, the one I can hardly contain my excitement for, Josie’s in ‘Blackthorne’s Bride’!

*Book provided by the publisher through NetGalley.