Texas, 1874. Long ago, Scout Proffitt gave up on ever being a man of honor like his Civil War hero brother Clayton. But when Scout steps foot on the rundown remnants of the Circle C ranch, he wonders if maybejust maybethe Lord has something different intended for him.
Rosemarie has lived most of her life doubting her worth and shouldering the blame for her brother’s death. But when a stranger rides onto her ranch, claiming he owns it, she suddenly is given a choice: either keep looking at the dark side of life . . . or dare to dream.
About the Author
Shelley Gray's first Amish novel, Hidden, was nominated for the Inspirational Readers Choice award. Her book Simple Gifts won the Reviewers Choice Award. Shelley’s novel, The Protector, recently made the New York Times bestseller list. A native of Texas, she earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Colorado, and taught school for ten years. She lives in southern Ohio where she writes full time.
Read an Excerpt
A Texan's Choice
Book 3 of the Heart of a Hero series
By Shelley Gray
Abingdon PressCopyright © 2012 Shelley Sabga
All rights reserved.
They'd been waiting five days for her father to die.
Only a strong sense of duty drove Rosemarie back into the darkened room, where the scents of whiskey and sickness grabbed her the moment she crossed the threshold. When she coughed, in a half-hearted attempt to adjust to the dim, thick air, six faces turned to her in surprise. The seventh occupant was oblivious.
"Sorry," she murmured around yet another cough. "Didn't mean to startle y'all."
"Rosemarie. Hush now," her mother ordered. "You're gonna disturb your pa."
Yet—as much as Rose could tell—Pa continued to lay motionless. The only sign he was still alive was the faint fluttering of the collar on his nightshirt. Though she hadn't been invited to do so, Rosemarie edged closer to the bed.
It wasn't easy to do with too many people packed into a too-small bedroom, and the place had never been much anyway.
Of course, it went without saying that their whole house had never been much. Her father had built it from a slew of cast-off boards from someone else's broken barn. Judging by the gaps in the planks, Rose had always assumed the former owners had known what they were doing when they'd left the wood for scrap before heading back east.
Her family had settled into the fifty-acre farm eight years ago, in the midst of the war. It lay just outside the borders of Broken Promise, a sorry little town if there ever was one.
But it had become home.
Her father had used every cent he had to settle them in and had promptly named the ranch "Bar C." Though the red dirt and loads of dust didn't look like much of anything, Pa had said the land was as good as any.
He was happy to settle and escape the fighting, though Rose had never understood exactly what was wrong with him.
Her mother had slapped her silly the one time she'd asked.
Now, though, her father seemed dwarfed by his past as much as by the old iron bed frame above his head, the pair of oak rocking chairs to his left, and group of bodies surrounding him.
Rosemarie stood in the perimeter, looking in, trying to see her father's face. But all she saw was the jumble of covers covering the majority of his chest. A wide splotch of brownish liquid had soaked into the warring rings making up the quilt. The once pristine white and soothing pink rings looked like faded replicas of what they'd once been, and that was the truth.
His breathing turned labored.
"How is he doing? Any change?" she finally asked, unable to bear the silence anymore. Unable to bear the idea that the waiting would continue. And continue some more after that.
"Ah, Rose." Doc glanced her way over a pair of wirerimmed spectacles. "I'm afraid I have no good news for you. He's about the same."
"His breathing slowed," her mother added somewhat hopefully.
With a weary nod, Pastor Colson nodded. "I believe it has. He'll be with the Lord soon, Rosemarie."
The comment had come from a sense that too much had happened that could never be repaired. They'd known for days now that their father wasn't going to get better, and since they'd begun the deathwatch, the atmosphere among all of them had turned into a helpless sense of inevitability.
Actually, the air in the room was so thick with the mingling of warm bodies, the light so dim, and the smell of sickness and despair so overpowering, Rose knew death would have to be better than the current situation.
But she probably should never have acknowledged that. To her right, her sister Annalise gasped. "Rose, how could you say such a thing?"
Though Rose knew Annalise had probably felt the same way—as did everyone else in the room—she apologized. "I'm sorry. I spoke out of turn."
"You certainly did."
"However, I dare say that heaven is a whole lot better," Rose said, not quite able to hide the irony she was feeling. After all, this place had never been good.
At least not for her.
Since Annalise only blinked, looking determined to pretend that they were in the middle of one of those fancy homes owned by the cattle barons—and the others looked grateful to have something to think about besides her father's labored breaths—Rose continued. "Heaven is supposed to be a wonderful place, right? A whole lot better than this?" When her sister merely continued to look shocked, Rose looked to the preacher for support.
Pastor Colson, however, was praying over his clasped hands.
"You need to learn to keep your thoughts to yourself, daughter," her mother murmured. "No one wants to hear your opinions."
No one ever had ... well, not since her brother, Pete, had died under her watch. "Yes'm."
The atmosphere relaxed a bit as all eyes turned back to Ben Cousins. With bated breath, they continued to watch Pa gasp and struggle to wheeze. No one touched him, not the doctor nor the preacher. Not Annalise. Not even her mother.
Maybe not especially May Cousins. Rose couldn't blame her mother for that, though, because her pa had never been much of a good man. In many ways, he hadn't been a bad one either.
No, more like her father was a study in what could have been. He could have been brighter, smarter, handsomer, or even nicer. Maybe even meaner. Instead, he'd often faded into the woodwork, not doing much of anything.
The thing was, no one expected him to do much, anyway. Not even to stay fighting in the war.
If Rose had been a betting woman, she'd have pretty much bet all her worth that no one had actually ever liked Ben Cousins, except, perhaps, his momma.
After all, what did you do with a man who clung to dreams like strings from kites and who made promises with the smallest amount of hope possible? Dreams only got you so far in the middle of November when the wind was howling, the fireplace was bare, and there wasn't a thing in the rickety house worth eating.
Once, when Rose was supposed to be sleeping but couldn't because her parents were going at it something fierce, May Cousins let forth a stream of dire words. "You're nothing but a waste and a wastrel, Ben. Day after day I've been waiting for you to go do something of means, but all you do is say that you don't feel well or that you've got plans in town. You're nothing but a worthless mass of bones and skin."
Rose reckoned that to be a pretty fair description.
Pa had been all of that and more. Full of shiny smiles and made-up promises. He was a shell of a man, his pride and confidence as brittle and fragile as one of the eggs the hens laid on a good day.
Now, as he lay dying, he wasn't much better.
Predictably, he was taking forever to meet his maker, holding up a mess of chores and work in the meantime.
Maybe Jesus wasn't in a real hurry to visit with him, neither.
As if reading her mind, May Cousins looked up from her perch next to her husband's side, the damp rag limp in her hand. "Rosemarie, do something to make yourself useful. Fetch more water, would you?"
Rose knocked into the thick door as she hastily walked back out. Her clash with the door's frame rang out a racket, drawing her older sister's scorn. "Can't you even walk right?"
Her sister's impatience was no surprise. Annalise Cousins Petula was only three years older but was comprised of a lifetime of different choices. At twenty-two, she was married, nursing a new baby, and still managed to look fresh and beautiful. Of course, Annalise had always managed to look perfect, even when she'd lived with them.
In contrast, Rosemarie, with her riot of brown curls and murky blue eyes, always seemed to be in need of a mirror.
She'd never had a patient nature, had hardly ever been able to sit still. That was surely why she'd spent the day brewing coffee, frying flatbread, and fetching for everyone else. It was why she'd gotten up early to take care of the chickens and Sam, the pig. It was why her hair was falling out of its hastily pinned bun and her bare feet were dirty.
Even in the chilly month of November.
Knowing that even if she got a pail of water and brought it back without dripping a drop, her mother would still find fault, Rose passed the pump and just kept going. She threw open the rickety back door, raced down the four steps, and welcomed freedom.
Grains of dust, cold and hard and unforgiving, spat up underfoot, mixing with the hem of her calico. A few errant pebbles scattered, flying in her path. One hit the wheel of the doctor's buggy, the sharp sound spurring his horse to lift his ears in annoyance. But no one yelled, and the air smelled clean. It felt so good to be outside.
The sun was setting, bringing with it a riot of color in the otherwise mud-brown horizon. In the distance, an owl hooted, signaling his dismay about the intrusion to the peaceful silence.
Rose didn't care. With eager feet, she passed the doc's buggy and the preacher's mare. She scurried by chicken pens. Around the gate to the garden. Finally with care, she approached the lone fence post. Pa had pounded it in the earth years ago, back when he'd intended to fence in their property. He'd never gotten any farther. It was as good a symbol as any, showing Broken Promise—maybe even the world—that the Cousinses never had much and weren't likely to, neither. Just beyond their land was opportunity. Rose clasped it gratefully.
As the sun continued to set, she spoke, praying and talking. Communicating with the only one who seemed to care about her. "Why's it taking so long, Lord? I'm thinking Pa's suffered enough."
The wind howled, slapping her in the face, bringing her shame for even wishing her Pa would hurry up and do the inevitable.
After all, their neighbors, the Kowalchecks, had crops to tend to. Annalise needed to get on home to her snooty husband. And, well, everyone else just seemed plumb worn out from all the waiting.
Was wishing for death so wrong? Rosemarie wasn't sure. But there had to be hope in death if there wasn't in life, right? And, well, Doc Breane said Pa's condition wasn't going to get better. Ever. Everyone had been on deathwatch for days. Rose couldn't remember for certain the last time her pa had been awake. One week ago? Ten days? Too long, for sure.
So shouldn't they all be hoping that Pa's glorious salvation would come sooner than later?
Life, such as if was, needed to go on.
As the sun sank and darkness flooded the plains, a stillness rose. No moon, or even a star deigned to keep her company. Only the wind, that howling, never- ending factor that was always present. Cool air sank into her bones. Crept in, teasing her with its company. Spurring her to duty, no matter how unpleasant. It was time to go back inside.
But then, in the distance, a shadow appeared. As it got bigger, Rose felt the vibration of horse hooves on the ground. Who now?
Unafraid, Rose watched the rider approach. Was it Mr. Wilson, their neighbor to the north? Russ Parker, the sheriff?
Annalise's husband? No doubt he would be looking for his dinner and his wife.
But as the shadow formed, Rose sensed he was a stranger. She knew of no man who sat a horse so perfectly. And she'd certainly not seen a black stallion of that size and strength.
He came closer.
Rose noticed his boots were black. The horse's bridle had a bit of silver. His duster was long and black and worn.
Who was he? Fear rose inside her.
His horse slowed as he approached, then finally came to a stop a good four feet away. Under the brim of the hat, pale blue eyes met her own.
For the first time in her life, Rose was afraid to speak. This man looked powerful and strong. Vaguely threatening.
"Ma'am?" His voice sounded scratchy, like he wasn't used to talking. Very slowly he tipped the rim of his black hat.
After swallowing hard, she found her voice. "What do you want?"
Before he could answer, a scream tore through the night, spooking the horses, even the stranger's. After the man gained control, he glanced at the window, then looked at her in concern. "What just happened?"
Rose knew. She knew as sure as if she'd been asked to stand by the bed, been allowed to hold her pa's hand. Loosening her right hand's death grip on the post, she pointed behind her. "I do believe my pa just died."
The sound of crying curled through the loose planks of their home, then dissipated into night air. To her surprise, Rose found she was not immune. Tears trekked down her cheeks—though maybe her eyes were watering from the cold that had suddenly engulfed her.
In front of her, still mounted on his very fine, very tall horse, the man in the black Stetson cursed under his breath. Finally, he spoke again, his voice low and husky. "Now, don't that beat all? My timing never was worth beans."
"Mister, who are you?"
After a lengthy pause, he spit out the words. "My name is Scout Proffitt."
Even someone as isolated as Rose knew the name. "You're an outlaw." Dime store novels told his tales. He'd killed before. Whispers hinted that he'd done worse.
All the novels also claimed that he wore only black. And this man, well, he certainly fit the bill.
"An outlaw? That's putting things a little harsh, don't you think?"
She thought it suited him just fine. "Why are you here?" Rose gripped the post as if her very livelihood depended on it.
"To claim my property ... if this is indeed the Bar C."
She heard the hint of sarcasm. The mess of boards and barbed wire in the middle of nowhere certainly didn't look in need of a name. "This is the Bar C. But it isn't your property. It's ours."
"It is now." A drop of humor and something else entered his eyes. As he leaned back in his saddle, he almost smiled. Almost. "Your pa bet this place and lost."
Rose struggled to grasp what he was saying. "My pa bet our home? Our land?"
"He did. Last time he came through Shawnee." His voice drifted off as he scanned the area. With one pass, he seemed to take in everything. The scraggly mesquite trees in the distance. The weed-filled garden. The planks in the house with the strangely beautiful door. The sorry state of the barn. The red dust that covered it all. "Though, by the looks of things, I reckon I might have come up as the loser after all."
As the crying continued in the distance, and the hens squawked their discomfort, as Rose heard her mother call for help and felt the burst of wind blow yet another curl loose from its pins, Rose had a feeling that he might be right.
"Rose? Rose! Where are you, girl?"
The gunslinger's mouth twitched. "Is that you? Rose?"
Wearily, she nodded.
With a look of sympathy, the outlaw pushed back his hat. "I guess you're needed. Go on now. Don't worry, I'll still be here when you come back."
She figured he would. After all, he'd come to claim her home.
As Rose turned and ran, she wasn't sure if she was afraid of that or very, very glad.
One more time, her sister yelled her name. "Rose, get in here!"
"I'm a-comin'!" she yelled, back to the house where she'd always wished she'd never been. Back to the home she'd always wished she'd never known.CHAPTER 2
After Rose had gone into the house—such that it was—Scout threw his leg over the horn and slid to the ground. Figuring the lone post was as good as anywhere, he tethered Rio to it. And then took a good look around.
The house was made of planks, sprinkled liberally with mud. The windows were glass, but dirtier than the depths of a murky pond stained with silt, making his view of the inhabitants hazy at best.
The house was a sad and ugly thing. Not near as pretty or large as the house he'd grown up in with his brother and sister.
It was even smaller than the house he'd lived in with Corrine during the war, back when it had been basically just the two of them since Clayton was off fighting Yankees as soon as he'd been able.
But one thing that the house did have going for it was a curiously attractive door. It looked to be solid oak. A master carpenter had carved an arch on the top, making the panel curved and pretty. But the nicest thing about the door was that it was painted a bright shiny red.
The door reminded him of some of the city houses he'd seen out in St. Louis. The door looked stately and high class and so completely out of place that it seemed like a bandit must have stolen the thing and attached it to this grandiose shack.
Just for kicks.
Excerpted from A Texan's Choice by Shelley Gray. Copyright © 2012 Shelley Sabga. Excerpted by permission of Abingdon Press.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
A Texan’s Choice by Shelley Gray Heart of a Hero Series Book 3 Scout Proffitt has gone the opposite way of his war hero brother, Clayton. Scout has lived his life as a loner and hired gun. After some things that happened in Scout’s life in the second book, A Texan’s Honor, he decides to go to the ranch he won gambling and settle down. What he didn’t expect was how run down the place was and the young woman who was there with nowhere else to go. Rosemarie Cousins felt unworthy. Since an accident ten years ago she has been an outcast in her own family. Her father has just passed away, an outlaw has come to claim their home and land and to top it all off….the rest of her family don’t want her. She is left to the mercy of a merciless killer. Or is he different than the rumors and dime novels that were written about him? A Texan’s Choice brings back characters from the previous two books, A Texan's Promise and A Texan's Honor. Many of these characters feel unworthy to be loved or respected. They look up to Clayton as a role model that they never believe they can emulate, but all want to. We see grace for a lonely and forgotten woman, a tired outlaw, a man who never cared about anyone but himself as well as a young man still in his teens who had to grow up way too quickly. The author never leaves out the tough things. The real life evil of the world or what her characters have lived. Which just makes God’s grace all that more when we see the end story. **Received through NetGalley for review
This was a great story. I love all the characters and was very intrigued to get to the next book. Loved this series.
Good book, good series, but unlike the first two books, this one had way too many errors. One spot even put in a wrong character's name in the middle of a scene. And there were just too many spots with grammatical errors. It almost appeared that the author was still in a rough draft and no proofreader double checked before going to ebook issue. It definitely detracted from the enjoyment of an otherwise good story.
Loved the series
A Texan's Choice. The third in a series, this book can easily be read alone (but I can guarantee will leave you rushing to get more of Shelley's Heart of a Hero books). Shelley, has brilliantly taken us back in time to late 1800's; introducing us to outlaws, cattle rustlers, ranchers and everyday people who struggled to survive. It is this fight for survival, with which readers identify. We first meet Rosemarie as she tends to the bedside of her dieing father. Immediately, we can sense she is a troubled young lady, but why? Sadness envelopes her, yet obviously it is not from her father's impending death. Does it come from her family's poorness, which is clearly seen as we enter the Bar C ranch? A poorness, which surely hits the eyes of Scout Proffit, as he rides up to stake his claim. Scout, the outlaw who's fame precedes him. Soon, Rosemarie's troubles, the reasons behind them and Scout's battle to put his fame behind him become lives entwined in the town known as Broken Promise.Their lives continue and we begin to understand answers as to why Rosemarie appears as she does, we also realize how each of us has a bit of Rosemarie in us. Reading on, we sense something else, something which cannot be seen...but was it? Before long we are in the camp of young outlaws, traveling the land, carrying secrets and searching their lives; much like young men (an women) of today. Finally we meet Miles Grant; a wealthy, yet seeming shy and insecure man. Miles owns the largest ranch in Camp Hope, a bustling town in complete contrast to Broken Promise. Past hurts, past mistakes, self-doubt and how they effect our characters lives, our characters and our own lives can be pondered. Through daily acts, their interacting lives, events which happen, confessions, we see each characters relationship with God; whether they are searching for it or trying to regain it. A Texan's Choice, enthralls readers with action, humor, identifiable characters and is one of those books you don't want to set down.
A Texan's Choice by Shelley Gray is the third installment in the Heart of a Hero Series and it is just as fantastic as the first two. This book is mainly about Scout Proffitt (whom we met in the previous book) and Rosemarie Cousins. There is also a side story with Scout's old gang member, but the main focus is on Rosemarie and Scout. In the second book, A Texan's Honor, we remember that towards the end of the book, Scout met a young girl named Kitty who changed his life. His whole life he'd been trying to be like his older brother Clayton. He wanted to be worthy of his family and anyone in general. Somehow, Kitty broke through is tough and lonely existence and set him on a path of irrevocable healing. The beginning of this book marks Scout winning a ranch in a poker game and going to retrieve it. Without giving away any more of the plot, he meets Rosemarie Cousins and has no choice but to marry her. Scout never dreamed he have a wife, especially not one like Rosemarie. Rosemarie is tired. She is tired of waiting and tired of being ignored. She, like Scout, faces a difficult time accepting that she is worthy of any one's love and affection since her family has treated her so horribly. She is, however, facing what life throws at her straight on. She is tough and determined to make her life better. She, like Scout, never thought she would find herself married, yet alone to a notorious gunslinger who acts nothing like the novels depicted him to. I like the part near the beginning of the book that, after Scout asked Rosemarie to marry him, that says "For the first time, she took [his hand] easily. Like they were becoming a pair instead of merely two lost souls stuck on some of the worst land in the great state of Texas" because I believe this is where the true healing for each of them begins. They have to learn to rely on each other and think about each other's thoughts and feelings, when they are both so used to being alone. The main theme, running rampart through the book, is about choices. Each person faces life with choices. That's part of God's will for our lives, the freedom to choose whether we believe or not. This book metes out past and present choices for each of the characters, ultimately ending in a happy, sweet way. "Faith and believing in a higher power? It's a personal thing. Something that can't be forced or taught." I hope you enjoy this series as much as I did!
I have loved reading this wonderful series. Good clean romance. I hope the author writes another book for the series!!
This was a very good read!
I very much enjoyed this book as well as the whole series. I hope there will be a book 4. Hopefully it will be about Russell.
I've thoroughly enjoyed this series. Loved it and can't wait to read more from this author.
I was hooked in the first few pages of A Texan's Choice by Shelley Gray and read it in one evening. It is the third book in The Hear of A Hero Series and I will be going back to read the other two books in the series, A Texan's Promise (book #1 and A Texan's Honor (book #2 This one can easily stand on its own. I loved the strong character of Scout Proffitt and that he had a tender side when it came to Rosemarie. I enjoyed seeing the wonderful changes in Rose's life as the relationship between she and Scout progressed. A Texan's Choice is proof that God can change even those people that the world does not think can be changed. This one has tough men who dream of a better life, and romance to smile about. I give this one a 5 out of 5. I received this book from Abingdon Press and Net Galley for my honest opinion.
This is book number 3 of a set. Got number 1 for free, BOUGHT #2 and 3, hoping for a #4! :)
All three books in 'The Heart of a Hero Series' by Shelley Gray are very good. It's so refreshing to read good, clean fiction without getting bombarded with sex and sexual innuendo. So thankful for Christian fiction!
This is the third book in the Heart of a Hero Series, and I would recommend you read all of these books, but you can read this one without. Enough information is provided to allow you to know what is going on. We start this book in 1874 West Texas, and if you think you have had a bad day, Rosemarie Cousin's would probably win. She has just lost her Father, and her Mother and Sister have left her. Then a man shows up to claim he owns her home and ranch....Scout Proffitt won the property in a card game from her Father. You will feel sorry for Rosemarie right from the beginning. When she was eight and her brother was four, he drowned while she was watching him. Her family has blamed her ever after. Some family! Scout Proffitt has lived his life as a gunslinger and has been on the run. When out of the blue an offer appears, he will not be able to turn down. We follow along as other characters we have learned to love a reintroduced, and we wonder if all will survive, or will we say goodbye? What happens between Rosemarie and Scout is sweet, and although unexpected, we hope for Rosemarie. Ah, she deserves to be happy, but can she find it with a gunslinger? We find that a lot of these people need to find forgiveness, and the Lord surely leads them. Enjoy this great read...you won't be able to leave this one alone once you start. I received this book from Pump Your Book Virtual Tours, and the Publisher Abingdon Press, and was not required to give a positive review.
Rosemarie is the outcast of her family thanks to a horrible accident when she was a child that was not her fault. With her father dead and a scary yet rugged cowboy claiming her families rundown ranch she is left with no where to go. Her only hope is to work for this cowboy. What she does not plan on is him stealing her heart. Scout is leaving his old life behind and starting a new with a ranch he won in a card game. Though the ranch is in desperate need of repair he is content to make it his own. He did not expect the woman to become part of the deal but with her family’s desertion he offers to let her work for him. He soon finds himself carrying for her yet when his past comes to find him will be be able to let go and find the happiness he has always wanted? This is the 3rd and final book in the Heart of a Hero series and I have to say I was a little disappointed. We started to get to know Scout in the 2nd book and I guess I expected a little more from this book. What I liked: The book was well written and the characters likeable. I really wanted Rosemarie to find some happiness after the way her family treated her. What I did not like: Both Scout and Rosemarie could have used some more depth. Scout was once a ruthless killer and now in this book he seems quite mellow. I know he was going from the fearless outlaw to the right side of the law rancher but I thought he could have been a little more exciting. Rosemarie could have used some backbone. I know her family treated her badly but it would have been nice to see her with a little more spunk. Also the added storyline with some of Scouts past gang members was odd. I was expecting a little more action at the climax of the story but it ended so quickly I had hoped for a little more excitement. Over all this was an okay book but it almost seemed like the series was tied up to quickly that maybe a 4th book would have made this story stronger and gave some of the other characters more time to develop(like the brother of Vanessa from the first book). It still was a good book and the ending made me tear up I just wish it would have had a little more meat at the climax.
Loved the ending!
To say that Rosemary Colson was having a bad day was simply an understatement. Not only has her father died today, but on the heels of his funeral, an hired gun, Scout Proffitt shows up to notify the family that their farm belongs to him. He won it in a card game with their now deceased father. Seems like he never did anything right when it came to his family. Now just moments after burying her father, Rosemary watches as her mother and sister pack up what little belongings they have and ride off, leaving her behind. Her mothers parting words to her were that she made so many poor choice when it came to finding someone to marry her, that now she must make a way for herself. She has only one other choice and that's to find a way to convince Scout Proffitt to let her stay on the ranch to take care of the cooking and cleaning. Little did Scout Proffitt realize how much he would get when he came to claim the land he had won against Ben Colson. He didn't want to spend time caring for another young woman when the last time he had done so it resulted in suicide when he couldn't offer her what she wanted. He didn't want to get involved in this situation again in caring for another, but then again, he couldn't just turn her away like her own mother did. He'd spent his whole life running and perhaps now with a chance to settle down and own a ranch, perhaps his old way of life is about to change. If only everyone else would believe that he is a changed man despite his legendary rumors that run contrary to those beliefs. In book three of the Heart of a Hero Series by Shelley Gray, A Texan's Choice shows how difficult it is to leave our tainted pasts behind us and attempt to start over again. For both Scout and Rose, the scenarios are similar but different. Each of them is strong-willed when it comes to what they both believe is right for their lives but find themselves crossing paths more often than not. When a string of thefts in town come too close for comfort the past is about to reunited with the present and Scout is about to learn that sometimes people aren't willing to let the past be forgotten! I received A Texan's Choice by Shelley Gray compliments of Pump Up Your Book Tours and Abingdon Press for my honest review and have to say, I love how this entire series has come together with this one being the conclusion. I've had the delight to read all the books in this delightful series and Christian Western Romances are a huge favorite genre for me. In each, there is a moral lesson that is overcome and the challenges of living the life on the western frontier make them all the more challenging, when guns are often used to resolve disputes and women can be treated as mere property. Times were hard, life was living fast and short but in the end, the goal is always achieved. It often makes you wonder how many times people wondered if there was a different way of dealing with things over the way life played out. Shelley gives the reader an idea that things weren't always easy and the choices had tough consequences in the end. I personally rate this one a 5 out of 5 stars.