Texas Frontier, 1826
Kit Barclay followed her husband into the wilds of Texas only to be widowed. Stranded with her mother- and sister-in-law to care for, with no hope of rescue before winter sets in, Kit has only one goal: survival. So when a lone horseman appears on the horizon, and then falls from his mount in fever, Kit must weigh the safety of her family against offering aid and shelter to the handsome stranger.
Trace Watson has lost everything that ever mattered to him. Trying to forget, he heads to the frontier colony of San Felipe, not caring if he lives or dies. But when he wakes to discover he's being nursed back to health by a brave young widow, he vows to repay her kindness by guiding the three women back to civilization, no matter what the cost.
Soon, Kit and Trace are fighting the elements, Indian attacks and outlaws—as well as feelings they both thought were long buried...
|File size:||392 KB|
About the Author
MJ Fredrick knows about chasing dreams. Twelve years after she completed her first novel, she signed her first publishing contract. Now she divides her days between teaching elementary music, and diving into her own writing—traveling everywhere in her mind, from Belize to Honduras to Africa to the past.
She's a four-time Golden Heart Award finalist, and she won the 2009 Eppie Award with Hot Shot and the 2010 Eppie with Breaking Daylight. She was a 2012 Epic Award finalist with Don’t Look Back.
Connect with MJ online.
Read an Excerpt
The Texas Frontier, 1826
Katherine Barclay straightened from stirring the laundry in the iron pot. She swept loose tendrils of hair back from her face and schooled her features into patience before she turned to her sixteen-year-old sister-in-law. Mary ran into the yard of the garrison, not wearing a wrap to protect her from the winds sweeping across the coastal plains. The young woman was recovering from a fever and didn't have the sense to cover her head on this frosty Texas day?
But Mary revered Kit, and while that admiration frequently tried Kit's patience, she had to remain conscious of it. There was no living with the girl if Kit hurt her feelings.
"What is it?" Kit asked, at the same time Mary blurted, "A man is riding this way!"
Kit's heart thumped. Could it be John? Had the word they'd received of his death on the Texas border been a mistake?
She tamped down that hope as she'd trained herself to do. Fear rose in its place. Only she, Mary and her mother-in-law, Agnes, remained at the garrison standing guard between the Karankawa tribe and Stephen Austin's colony of San Felipe. The other inhabitants had fled. John had urged Kit to accompany him on his mission back to the States, but their young son, Daniel, had been sick. She'd feared traveling would make him worse. Agnes and Mary had agreed to stay with her, a fact she'd been grateful for when she received word that her husband had been killed in a skirmish with outlaws, and when she'd buried her son a week later.
Before regret could squeeze her heart, she closed the door on it. She couldn't dwell on the past now. She was in charge. As much as she loved Agnes and Mary, they were too frail for this frontier life. And now their safety was threatened.
She released the stirring stick she'd been gripping and flexed her cold, aching fingers. "Where is this man?"
"He's coming from the northeast. We saw him through the window."
Another transgression. They shouldn't have had the window set in the fort wall open, not when the January wind had such a bite. The last thing Kit needed was to bury her sister-in-law if she caught another fever. Kit stepped away from the laundry fire and snatched her wrap from the chair nearby. She folded the woolen fabric around herself as she headed for the steps leading to the top of the wooden cabin that sat just inside the fort wall.
"Stay here," she ordered over her shoulder as Mary began to follow.
The command did no good, and the young woman trotted behind her up the steps.
Wind whipped at Kit's already wild hair and tore through her thin cloak and damp dress. The low gray clouds offered no hope of sun. She buried her hands in the folds of her cloak and scanned the flat horizon.
There, astride a beautiful roan, slumped a man in a saddle, heading straight toward the garrison.
Alarm shot through her as she realized she'd left her loaded rifle beside the chair where her cloak had been. She cursed her lack of foresight. She hadn't expected him to be so close.
She whirled to run for the rifle when a movement from the man caught her eye. She turned back just in time to see him drop out of the saddle and remain motionless on the road.
Drunk, was her first thought. Or hurt. Or sick.
She stiffened. No more sickness. She couldn't bear expending her energy on someone else she couldn't help.
She stared at the man, so still in the golden dry grass, his horse standing patiently beside him, and gnawed her lip in indecision.
Mary gripped her arm, huddling against Kit for warmth. "What are we going to do?"
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Having control and having a plan are primary needs for Kit Barclay. Even though she's bowed-down with grief, she struggles to keep two inept women and herself alive in an abandoned fort. A sick man added to her burdens was not in her plan, but Christian duty demands she try to save his life. He impacts every part of her life - physical, emotional, spiritual, and mental - making Sunrise Over Texas an exciting, captivating story of survival against tremendous odds. Trace Watson, running away from everything with no plan for anything, hates being a burden and pushes himself to the limit to get well enough to help assure their survival. He is determined to get them to civilization before they starve or get killed by outlaws or Indians. However, the challenge is more than he alone can win, but with Kit's help they plan with care then set out on a dangerous journey that tests every ounce of courage they have. Mary and Agnes are both royal pains and of no help. They are a startling contrast to the hard-working Kit who feels responsible for them since they are her in-laws. The breathtaking love scenes show a deep, primal need as well as an emotional connection that reaches past the rules of society. Trace and Kit need each other on so many levels. The turn of events late in the novel brings cold, harsh reality to the hero and heroine that is heartbreaking. How Ms. Fredrick will get things back on track so there will be a happy-ever-after keeps one turning pages with urgency. Talented author MJ Fredrick creates a feast for the senses - the cold and fear while crossing the Trinity River, the roar of the cannon, the taste of food, the smell of a loved one, and sight of civilization are just a few of the many things to enjoy. Sunrise Over Texas is crammed full of troubles, but the memorable love story outshines all else. Originally posted at the Long and Short of It Romance Reviews
SUNRISE OVER TEXAS by M.J. Fredrick is a delightful historical romance set in 1826 Texas Territory. It is well written with details, depth, twists and turns. It has romance, passion, love, hardship,death, survival,Indian attack, outlaws, betrayal, hurt, and traveling across the vast land of Texas. The characters are easy to follow, easy to win your heart, strong, determined to survive, and longing for love, safety and home. The heroine, Kit, is strong willed, hard working, beautiful, gutsy, determined for her family and herself to survive the hardship they have to endure.She is a widow who has just lost her son and her husband. The hero, Trace, is handsome, strong, just lost his wife and infant child, goes to the frontier to run away from his hurt and pain. He is sick and wanders into a abandoned fort, which is not abandoned but has three women left. Kit, brings him into the fort to help him. While both try to fight their feelings for each other, the attraction only grows. Trace,Kit, her sister-in-law and her mother-in-law set out to get to Austin. Along the way they encounter outlaws, Indians, fight the cold,harsh Texas weather, limited supplies and their feelings. This is a wonderful story of love, lost, finding love again in the midst of tragedy and hardships. I would recommend this book. This book was received for review from Net Galley and details can be found at Carina Press and My Book Addiction and More.
Better then average................................................................................................................................ Interesting story with some twists and turns to it. Probably could have done without the blow by blow description EVERY time they had sex. But the emotions of all the characters seemed real. There were a few surprises also. Highly recommend.