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Book Review

Publisher's Note:

Greta Nilsson's trip west to save her ailing little sister, Astrid, could not have gone more wrong. First, bandits hold up her stagecoach, stealing all her money. Then, upon arriving in Fairplay, Colorado, she learns the man she was betrothed to as a mail-order bride has died. Homeless, penniless, and jobless, Greta and her sister are worse off than when they started. Wyatt McQuaid is struggling to get his new ranch up and running and is in town to purchase cattle when the mayor proposes the most unlikely of bargains. He'll invest in a herd of cattle for Wyatt's ranch if Wyatt agrees to help the town become more respectable by marrying and starting a family. And the mayor, who has promised to try to help Greta, has just the candidate in mind for Wyatt to marry.…

A Cowboy for Keeps

by Jody Hedlund

Overall Book Review:

A Cowboy for Keeps by Jody Hedlund is an interesting and thought-provoking work of historical fiction.  The book takes place during the post-Civil War era and follows a naive, but desperate young woman named Greta Nillson on her journey to Colorado to become a mail-order bride.  As one might expect, her adventures are not just that of learning to live with her never-before-seen husband.

The focus of the story is on the main characters and their path to becoming a family, but the secondary characters stood out more than usual.  Judd’s story is finally told and it is a heart breaking one for sure.  More than anything it teaches strength, endurance, and the ability of humans to rise from the ashes of their lives.

Another character wants so badly to be reunited with his family that he goes to great lengths to achieve this.  It really gives one pause to consider what sacrifices one would be willing to make to be united once again with a loved one. 

The story is enjoyable and filled with all sorts of emotions.  Greta herself is a sad tale of abuse and endurance.  Readers will sympathize and some will empathize with her desire to finally find a place to call home.  Romance, danger and historical tidbits fill this book. 

Review of a Digital Advance Reader Copy

This book was sent to Compass Book Ratings for review by Bethany House Publishers

Content Analysis:

Profanity/Language:  None 

Violence/Gore:  Characters are robbed at gunpoint; man recalls his step-dad striking him and his brother; character attempts to grab hold of a woman, shots are fired; a man’s cattle are slaughtered and there is mention of blood; a man grabs a woman and is shot and killed. 

Sex/Nudity:  Several mentions of prostitution; a few references to the marital bed; a character asks another if he has consummated his marriage; married characters kiss and embrace.

Mature Subject Matter:

Abuse of a child by a parent, terminal illness, death.

Alcohol / Drug Use:

Implication that characters consume alcohol.

Overall Book Rating

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About the Reviewer

I primarily read fiction from all genres. I have six children and many happy hours have been spent reading together. I also love quilting, hiking, and camping.