For Ellen Beckwith, it comes as a shot -- a rifle shot introducing her to her new life in New Mexico Territory. Fleeing her turbulent past and uncertain of her relationship with God, she has two clear missions: to open a store in Simsville, New Mexico and find employment for women bereft by the Civil War. She survives assaults, kidnapping, arson, and torture with the help of Territorial Marshal Owen Brady and the young half-breed Ellen rescues from a murderous mob. Forces attempting to drive her from the territory align with her malevolent ex-fiancé determined to obtain her fortune by any method necessary. A friend who betrayed her saves Ellen's life without regard for his own, posing the dilemma of following man's law or God's. But her enemies are still loose and she is not safe. She finally realizes God has been answering her prayers in His own mysterious way.
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In a country still reeling from the effects of the Civil War, Ellen Beckwith is committed to helping widows rebuild their lives. New Mexico Territory needs development, making it ideal for her to open a store and begin finding places for the women to work. However, her beginning starts off rockily when her coach is held up by bandits. Fortunately, her stash of cash is hidden well enough to remain safe. The robber escapes with little more than a kiss. Shaken by that, Ellen goes from the frying pan to the fire when the local banker is stunned into hostility upon learning that C E Beckwith is not a man, but money proves handy in unruffling feathers. So begins her new life, but the past is not done with her. With a fortune dragging her down and hindering her faith, Ellen is in a prime spot to be hurt by that past in more than one way. Love and God are calling to her, if she makes the best choice. ................... **** A clear message reaches through this adventurous tale of post war America. Although sweet, at times it is gritty enough to hold you on the edge of your seat. The main flaw would be the phonetic drawls displayed by many characters that sometimes slow the pace. ****
I've just finished reading Enchanted Hearts and enjoyed it immensely! I found it to have interesting characters, a strong heroine, a good story line, and some twists and turns to keep things interesting. I would highly recommend it to anyone who wants to curl up with a good book!