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A desperate bargain
Running for her life, Kate Chandler flees to Oklahoma with a price on her head, hoping to stake a claim in the Great Land Run of 1889. But with no money, no protection, no food--and an unborn baby to think about--she is desperate enough to accept a devil's bargain from a notorious bounty hunter Cole Youngblood. Ruggedly handsom, he'll stake her claim if she'll be a mother to his sister's three orphaned children--unaware of Kate's dangerous secret: she is the quarry he's been hired to find.
A dangerous love
Cole knows Kate is running from something terrible; the fear in her eyes is clear as day. But that doesn't change is plan to marry her, make the Land Run, then leave Kate and the children behind--safe away from the hard life he's chosen. He didn't expect the wild emotions that would sear his hardened heart and make him yearn for a life beyond the grim realities of living by his gun. But as passion exposes the deadly secrets that shadow them both, he knows their only hope for a future together is to forge a love stronger than the danger trying to tear them apart.
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Adult/High School-Twenty-year-old Kate Chandler, upstairs maid for New York socially prominent and politically powerful Edgar Talmidge, is terrified and shocked at her predicament. Because she looks so much like the barren Mrs. Talmidge, she has been raped by Talmidge to carry his heir and is told that if she runs away, both she and her baby will be hunted down and killed. With some mysterious help, Kate manages to escape and flees to Oklahoma in April of 1889 to join in the Great Land Run. What she doesn't realize is that the Homestead Act limits participants to those 21 years old and over and heads of households. Along comes Cole Youngblood, a well-known bounty hunter, who says he will stake her claim if she will care for his sister's orphaned children. Cole is unaware that Kate is the woman that he has been hired to bring in. To protect her interest, Kate holds out for marriage. Cole knows Kate is running from something but agrees to marry her for the sake of the children. The characters are strongly drawn and move the story into a lasting romantic relationship, and the ending may surprise readers. The hardships and the determination of those seeking land of their own are vividly portrayed. Also, a glimpse into the lives of women on the frontier will give some meaning to the phrase "you've come a long way baby." Believable characters, lots of action, a vivid historical setting, and romance are the key elements of this good read.-Carol Clark, formerly at Fairfax County Public Schools, VA
Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.From Publishers Weekly:
Set against the backdrop of the Great Land Run of 1889, this captivating historical love story grapples with themes of feminine empowerment, family duty and personal morality. While working as a maid for the wealthy New York Talmidge family, Kate Chandler finds that her uncanny resemblance to the patriarch's barren wife casts her as the pawn in the Talmadges' scheme to have an heir. Edgar Talmidge rapes the young servant and holds her captive, but Kate, pregnant and penniless, escapes to Oklahoma to seek anonymity and a new life for herself and her child. But the heroine's dreams are thwarted by the rules of the Run: to stake a claim, one must be either 21 years old or married. Determined to survive, she agrees to care for three orphaned children who had been left to a widely feared hired gun, Cole Youngblood. In exchange, the gunslinger will secure a choice plot of land for Kate. What Cole doesn't know is that his new bride is the runaway maid he's under contract to destroy. His new, makeshift clan brings him unexpected contentment, and a showdown with the evil Talmidges proves he's a changed man, newly devoted to love and family. Porter (Captive Angel) sets up a potent irony by delivering her heroine into the keeping of her assigned killer. At times, the story stalls with too much character introspection, and a few plot points are bit too coincidental, yet the narrative zings along with high drama toward a heartwarming denouement. (May)
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Book Description St. Martin's Paperbacks, 2000. Mass Market Paperback. Condition: New. Never used!. Seller Inventory # P110312972911
Book Description St. Martin's Paperbacks, 2000. Condition: New. book. Seller Inventory # M0312972911