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Buffalo Valley
     

Buffalo Valley

3.6 57
by Debbie Macomber
 

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It's a time of change for a small prairie town

Buffalo Valley, North Dakota, has a will to survive, to prosper. And the outside world has discovered Buffalo Valley. A large retail conglomerate plans to move in, which would surely destroy the independent businesses...and maybe the town.

It's a season of change for Vaughn Kyle

Just out of the

Overview

It's a time of change for a small prairie town

Buffalo Valley, North Dakota, has a will to survive, to prosper. And the outside world has discovered Buffalo Valley. A large retail conglomerate plans to move in, which would surely destroy the independent businesses...and maybe the town.

It's a season of change for Vaughn Kyle

Just out of the army, he's looking for a life to live--and waits for his reluctant fianc?e to make up her mind. Vaughn decides to visit Buffalo Valley and Hassie Knight. He was named after Hassie's son who died in Vietnam and she thinks of him as a surrogate son. He arrives at her store one snowy day and finds not Hassie but a young woman named Carrie Hendrickson...

Will the season bring peace and joy--to Vaughn and to the town?

As he begins to love Carrie, Vaughn questions his feelings for the woman he thought he loved. He wants to stay in Buffalo Valley and fight for its way of life. A life that's all about friends and...

Editorial Reviews

bn.com
Since Debbie Macomber introduced readers to the town of Buffalo Valley in her New York Times bestselling Dakota trilogy, readers have watched the town revitalize, as long-term residents and newcomers fought to preserve it -- and often found love along the way. In this charming volume, Buffalo Valley faces a new challenge. Everyone thinks Vaughn Kyle has come to town to meet Hassie Knight. After all, Vaughn was named after Hassie's dead son, and this is the first time he's come to town. What the folks in town don't know is that Vaughn's fiancée, Natalie Nichols, works for the Value-X conglomerate, and that Natalie has asked Vaughn to use this visit as a scouting trip to evaluate Buffalo Valley as a location for one of their superstores. If that store gets built, it will be goodbye Main Street, including Hassie Knight's drugstore. Once Vaughn meets Hassie's assistant, Carrie Hendrickson, it doesn't take long for him to realize that he's facing one of the most important choices of his life. He's caught between Value-X and Buffalo Valley, between Natalie's corporate savvy and Carrie's country-girl smarts, and between the future he always envisioned for himself and the appealing way of life that he glimpsed in the unique little town.
Publishers Weekly
The fictional town of Buffalo Valley, which was the setting for Macomber's Dakota trilogy (Always Dakota, etc.), faces a new hurdle at Christmastime in this fourth volume. Recently discharged after seven years in the army, Vaughn Kyle arrives in the North Dakota community with a double motive. The first is to meet Hassie Knight, the aging town pharmacist whose deceased son was Kyle's namesake. The second is to secretly scope out the town for Value-X, a Wal-Mart-like chain for whom Vaughn is about to start work and for which his hard-driving girlfriend, Natalie Nichols, works as a vice-president. The meeting with Hassie affects Vaughn more than he expected, and so, in a different way, does an encounter with her assistant, Carrie Hendrickson. Wary after a painful divorce, Carrie is drawn to Kyle and offers to show him the town. Rationalizing that he's supposed to find out as much about Buffalo Valley as possible, he agrees. Soon Kyle meets a raft of townspeople and learns about the close relationships that make the community special. He also finds himself falling for Carrie. When the news breaks that Value-X plans to build a store in town, people are outraged at the threat to their small businesses and organize to fight it. Caught in the middle, Vaughn must choose between the brittle Natalie, with whom he had discussed marriage, and the compassionate Carrie. Although there's never any doubt that both the town and true love will triumph, Vaughn's dilemma generates genuine tension. Macomber keeps her characters straight enough to avoid confusion and displays her usual gift for tugging on the heartstrings. Although there isn't enough depth or suspense here to generate runaway sales, thissentimental stocking-stuffer should please fans of the series as well as new readers. (Oct.) Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781426843662
Publisher:
MIRA
Publication date:
08/01/2009
Series:
Dakota Series , #4
Sold by:
HARLEQUIN
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
400
Sales rank:
11,172
File size:
587 KB

Read an Excerpt

Chapter One


So this was North Dakota. Gazing steadily ahead, Vaughn Kyle barreled down the freeway just outside Grand Forks. Within a few miles, the four lanes had narrowed to two. Dreary, dirt-smudged snow lay piled up along both sides of the highway. Fresh snow had begun to fall, pristine and bright, glinting in the late-afternoon sun.

    His parents had retired earlier in the year, leaving Denver, where Vaughn had been born and raised, and returning to the state they'd left long ago. They'd moved north, away from the majestic peaks of the Rocky Mountains to the endlessly boring landscape of the Dakotas. This was supposed to be beautiful? Maybe in summer, he mused, when the fields of grain rippled with the wind, acre after acre. Now, though, in December, in the dead of winter, the beauty of this place escaped him. All that was visible was a winding stretch of black asphalt cutting through flat, monotonous terrain that stretched for miles in every direction.

    After seven years as an Airborne Ranger in the U.S. Army's Second Battalion based in Fort Lewis, Washington, Vaughn was poised to begin the second stage of his working life. He had his discharge papers and he'd recently been hired by Value-X, a mega-retailer with headquarters in Seattle. Value-X was one of America's most notable success stories. New stores were opening every day all across the United States and Canada.

    His course was set for the future, thanks largely to Natalie Nichols. They'd met two years earlier through mutual friends. Natalie was smart, savvy and ambitious; Value-X had recognized her skills and she'dadvanced quickly, being promoted to a vice presidency before the age of thirty.

    Vaughn had been attracted by her dedication and purpose, and he'd admired her ambition. His own work ethic was strong; as he'd come to realize, that was increasingly rare in this age of quick fixes and no-fault living. Natalie was the one who'd convinced him to leave the army. He was ready. When he'd enlisted after finishing college, he'd done so intending to make the military his career. In the seven years since, he'd learned the advantages and drawbacks of soldiering.

    He didn't mind the regimented life, but the career possibilities weren't all he'd hoped they would be. What he lacked, as Natalie had pointed out, was opportunity. He was limited in how far he could rise through the ranks or how quickly, while the private sector was wide-open and looking for promising employees like him. He'd been interviewed by three headhunters who recruited candidates for a variety of corporations and in just a few weeks had six job offers.

    At first he'd felt there might be a conflict of interest, taking a position with the same company as Natalie. However, she didn't view it that way; they would be a team, she'd told Vaughn, and with that remarkable persuasive skill of hers had convinced him to come on board. He wouldn't officially start until after the first of the year, but he was already on assignment.

    Value-X was buying property in Buffalo Valley, North Dakota. Since Vaughn was going to be in the vicinity, visiting his parents in nearby Grand Forks, Natalie had asked him to pay the town a visit. It wasn't uncommon for a community to put up token resistance to the company's arrival. In most cases, any negative publicity was successfully handled, using a proven strategy that included barraging the local media with stories showing the company's "human face." After a recent public-relations disaster in Montana, Natalie was eager to avoid a repeat. She'd asked Vaughn to do a "climate check" in Buffalo Valley, but it was important, she insisted, that he not let anyone know he was now a Value-X employee, not even his parents. Vaughn had reluctantly agreed.

    He'd done this because he trusted Natalie's judgment. And because he was in love with her. They'd talked about marriage, although she seemed hesitant. Her reasons for postponing it were logical, presented in her usual no-nonsense manner. She refused to be "subservient to emotion," as she called it, and Vaughn was impressed by her clear-cut vision of what she wanted and how to achieve it. They'd get married when the time was right for both of them.

    He was eager to have her meet his family. Natalie would be joining him on December twenty-seventh, but he wished she could've rearranged her schedule to travel with him.

    On this cold Friday afternoon two weeks before Christmas, Vaughn had decided to drive into Buffalo Valley. Because of Hassie Knight, he didn't need to invent an excuse for his parents. Hassie was the mother of his namesake. She'd lost her only son—his parents' closest friend—in Vietnam three years before Vaughn was born. Every birthday, until he'd reached the age of twenty-one, Hassie had mailed him a letter with a twenty-five-dollar U.S. Savings Bond.

    In all that time, he'd never met her. From first grade on, he'd dutifully sent her a thank-you note for every gift. That was the extent of their contact, but he still felt a genuine fondness for her—and gratitude. Hassie had been the one to start him on a savings program. As a young adult Vaughn had cashed in those savings bonds and begun acquiring a portfolio of stocks that over the years had become a hefty nest egg.

    An hour after he left Grand Forks, Vaughn slowed his speed, certain that if he blinked he might miss Buffalo Valley entirely. Value-X could put this place on the map. That was one benefit the company offered small towns. He wasn't sure what kind of business community existed in Buffalo Valley. He knew about Knight's Pharmacy of course, because Hassie owned that. Apparently the town was large enough to have its own cemetery, too; Hassie had mailed him a picture of her son's gravesite years earlier.


Excerpted from Buffalo Valley by Debbie Macomber. Copyright © 2001 by Debbie Macomber. Excerpted by permission. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.

Meet the Author

Debbie Macomber, with more than 100 million copies of her books sold worldwide, is one of today's most popular authors. The #1 New York Times bestselling author is best known for her ability to create compelling characters and bring their stories to life in her books. Debbie is a regular resident on numerous bestseller lists, including the New York Times (70 times and counting), USA TODAY (currently 67 times) and Publishers Weekly (47 times). Visit her at www.DebbieMacomber.com.

Brief Biography

Hometown:
Port Orchard, Washington
Date of Birth:
October 22, 1948
Place of Birth:
Yakima, Washington
Education:
Graduated from high school in 1966; attended community college
Website:
http://www.debbiemacomber.com

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

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Buffalo Valley (Dakota Series #4) 3.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 57 reviews.
harstan More than 1 year ago
Vaughn Kyle has just left the Army and seems to have every thing ready to start civilian life in an upbeat manner in Seattle. He has been thinking of marriage and will start a job in the New Year, but returns home for the holidays to see his family in Grand Forks, North Dakota.

A bit restless about his future, Kyle visits elderly pharmacist Hassie Knight in Buffalo Valley. He never met Hassie before, but they are connected as his parents named him after her deceased son who died in Nam. At the pharmacy, Kyle meets trainee Carrie Hendrickson. They begin to fall in love. However, Kyle¿s employer in Washington State plans to build a superstore that will put the small shops out of business and potentially destroy the serenity and optimism of the area.

BUFFALO VALLEY is a warm regional drama that returns readers to a special place highlighted in Debbie Macomber¿s Dakota trilogy. Fans of the series will enjoy learning what has happened to the townsfolk in Buffalo Valley since the last novel was published. Though the tale is Rockwell in scope, painting a simplistic evil Goliath vs. idealistic David landscape, the story line retains the flavor and charm of the series, especially as the audience looks into the lives of the cast. Ms. Macomber takes her myriad of fans on a wonderful journey to a Shangra-La threatened by ¿progress¿.

Harriet Klausner

Diane_RNJ More than 1 year ago
I loved the entire Dakota Series! The characters were very well developed. The story line was easy to follow. I could not wait to read more every chance I got.... but became very sad when I had completed the series. I am sure that you know what I mean.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Buffalo Valley was a wonderful, well-written book. I read it over the Christmas holidays, and I couldn't put it down. This book reminds you of the things that are REALLY important! I think anyone would enjoy reading Buffalo Valley. I am looking forward to reading more books written by Debbie Macomber.
Jean Midyette More than 1 year ago
A most delightful series whose characters come alive through the telling of their stories. I have lived in South Dakota and the descriptions of this areas wild beauty are en pointe. Wholesome characters you will fall in love with. Jean
PrettyBrownEyes77 More than 1 year ago
I'm disapointed. I will stick to buying the books online. It gives me a better idea of what I am purchasing. The sample doesn't help either.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The three previous Dakota nooks eere great. This is a rush job. It protests the ravages Walmart is perpetrating in small town America. All that is true however we paid to read more about her wonderful characters and town which were glossed over in this mini book!
ekaterin More than 1 year ago
A totally predictable, totally forgettable story. Macomber spends so much time trying to review all her town's characters, she spends very little time developing the two people the book is supposed to center around. They start to do something together, and she just cuts off to some part of the story we couldn't care less about. There's never any real confrontation with the big, bad Value-X that is supposedly coming to destroy their town, and the climax just falls flat. She obviously just rushed this book out to get something on the shelf to sell.
Iasereht More than 1 year ago
Another wonderful author that can make you feel a part of the story, a part of the community. Your heart goes out to those having troubles and you can't help but want them to have everything they want. I know it's fiction, but it feels good to feel a part of a story that still has morals and ethics. I love her books.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Might be a good book, but not 400 pages. My Nook shows 135, and that's not subtracting all the previews and advertizing. Very disappointing for $6.99!!
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