Book Beat - To Win Her Heart

I've found a new author to add to my must-read list. Karen Witemeyer's novels brim over with romance, humor, and well-developed characters, and I chewed through all three in a very short time. To Win Her Heart has a similar setting (Texas in the late 1800s) as the first two novels, A Tailor-Made Bride and Head in the Clouds, but each novel completely stands alone.

Eden Spencer is the wealthy daughter of the town founder, who runs a lending library, makes art from pressed flowers, and abhors violence. Levi Grant is the new town blacksmith who stumbles over his words and has violence hidden in his past. Not a likely pair, but the chemistry between them rings true, and they discover unexpected depth in each other. When Levi rescues the daughter of a saloon girl and then reveals his secret, Eden has to confront the prejudices she holds inside and learn the meaning of redemption and forgiveness.

The characters were so richly developed. I loved Levi's restraint - from how he creatively works around his speech impediment to how he resists the urge to violence. I also loved watching Eden grow from a woman who sees herself as charitable to a woman who actually is charitable. The side characters are delightful as well.

Even if you're not a fan of the Texas frontier - and I'm not - the beautiful writing and fascinating characters will draw you in. I strongly recommend To Win Her Heart and can't wait for Karen Witemeyer's next novel!

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