Go to Homepage   Jodi Thomas: When a Texan Gambles


Crescent Blues Book ViewsJove (Paperback), ISBN 0-515-13629-8

Sarah Andrews suddenly finds herself in an interesting dilemma -- married to a stranger to get out of jail. Her first husband and newborn daughter died on a wagon train trip west across the country, and the train's leader abandoned her and two other unattached women in Texas. During an attack from a mean drifter, Zeb, the three women kill him then confess to the murder. This lands all three in jail. But Zeb's life of crime leaves no one upset about his death, so the sheriff holds a wife lottery to save the townspeople the cost of supporting the three women.

Book: jodi thomas, when a texan gambles
Bounty hunter and Texas' most hated man (by both criminals and upstanding citizens) Sam Gatlin idly partakes in the lottery, only to be captivated by Sarah's angel-like beauty. Luckily for him, Sarah pulls his name from the pot. But their marriage gets off to a rough start. The evening after the wedding, an outlaw stabs Sam in the back. A friend in town loads their wagon and Sarah drives all night to a hidden clearing in a canyon.

There Sarah nurses Sam back to health. Through the next few days, Sarah begins learning just what type of man she married, while Sam falls more in love with her. But he needs to earn her trust and assure her that he won't force himself on her. And for the first time, he contemplates giving up his outlaw-hunting lifestyle for a home and the sense of security he feels with Sarah.

Flat and with little to distinguish it from other Western romances, Jodi Thomas delivers a ho-hum tale. Sarah's ideas of what a proper wife should do or feel come across as silly. Even when true feelings begin to develop, they don't seem exciting or passionate. And Sam's fascination with her beauty doesn't provide a strong enough plot device to sustain this book. A mildly entertaining read, but definitely not the best on the market.

Jen Foote

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