On his way to interview for a position at a church in the Piney Woods of Texas, Crockett Archer can scarcely believe it when he’s forced off the train by a retired outlaw and presented to the man’s daughter as the minister she requested for her birthday. Worried this unfortunate detour will ruin his chances of finally serving a congregation of his own, Crockett is determined to escape. But when he finally gets away, he’s haunted by the memory of the young woman he left behind–a woman whose dreams now hinge on him.
For months, Joanna Robbins prayed for a preacher. A man to breathe life back into the abandoned church at the heart of her community. A man to assist her in fulfilling a promise to her dying mother. A man to help her discover answers to the questions that have been on her heart for so long. But just when it seems God has answered her prayers, it turns out the parson is there against his will and has dreams of his own calling him elsewhere. Is there any way she can convince Crockett to stay in her little backwoods community? And does the attraction between them have any chance of blossoming when Joanna’s outlaw father is dead set against his daughter courting a preacher?
How many outlaw would hold up a train and steal a preacher, and as a birthday gift for the gang leader’s daughter, no less? Silas Robbins would, and the unfortunate Crockett Archer gets dragged into one mighty odd situation.
But as the Bible says: All things work together for good. And when Crockett helps Silas’s daughter Jo reopen the local church, lives are changed in a way Crockett never thought.
I’ve always loved Karen Witemeyer’s books, and have dread almost every one of them. I’m thinking that this one is destined to become a favorite. There’s plenty of humor, a touch of hijinks, and just a hint of suspense. The book never takes itself too seriously. It’s a light and easy read that is great for when you’re stressed and can’t take too much excitement in your books. I highly recommend it, and any of the rest of Witemeyer’s works to everyone.
My Rating: Five Flames
Romance: Clean. Some flirting and kisses only.
Drinking/Drugs: Clean. It is mentioned that one character’s father is an alcoholic, but we never actually see him.
Blood/violence: There is an attempted hanging, and one character is shot. There is description of the surgery and removal of the bullet that, while never graphic, might make more squeamish people a bit queasy.